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Senators Skeptical of Kim’s Nuke Pledge As Trump Prepares for Summit
North Korean leader says he’s putting a freeze on nuclear and medium- and long-range missile testing

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., threw cold water on the notion President Donald Trump’s planned meeting with North Korea President Kim Jong Un would lead to serious concessions from the North. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senators from both parties offered measured applause to President Donald Trump over the weekend after North Korea announced it would suspend nuclear and medium- and long-range missile tests ahead of Trump’s planned summit with its leader, Kim Jong Un.

The North’s promises to stem its nuclear weapons program “show that the president has put Kim Jong Un on the wrong foot for the first time,” Sen. Tom Cotton said Sunday on CBS's “Face the Nation.”

Lieu Apologizes for Inviting Parkland Student to Try California Pot
Kyle Kashuv has gained popularity on Twitter among conservative circles

Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., apologized for a tweet Sunday inviting a survivor of the Parkland, Florida, shooting to experience the state’s cannabis when he turns 21. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Ted Lieu issued a quick apology on Twitter Sunday after inviting a Parkland, Florida, school shooting survivor, Kyle Kashuv, to California to experience the state’s “awesome cannabis” when he turns 21.

“While I am proud of California’s legal cannabis law, I can see why saying this to you can be misinterpreted because you are not 21,” Lieu wrote in reply to Kashuv about the post. “I hereby apologize. You should listen to your parents.”

Sen. Doug Jones Tells LGBT Staffers He’s Discouraged By Trends in Alabama
Democratic senator, who has a gay son, sees state going in ‘opposite’ direction of LGBT rights

Sen. Doug Jones, D-Ala., arrives for a bipartisan meeting on immigration in the Dirksen Building office of Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, in January. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Doug Jones is a political outlier, a Deep South advocate in the Senate for gay and lesbian people.

Nary a social progressive had emerged from conservative Alabama to represent the state in the U.S. Senate until Jones, a Democrat, pulled off a stunning upset in December over the GOP hard-line conservative nominee, Roy Moore.

FCC Rejects Democrats’ Request to Review Sinclair License
Broadcast group made its anchors read a promotional script blasting other outlets’ ‘fake news’

Ajit Pai, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission, rejected 12 senators’ request to investigate Sinclair Broadcasting group's license after its "fake news" segment. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai declined Thursday to follow through on a request from 12 senators that his bureau review Sinclair Broadcasting group’s license and temporarily block its merger with Tribune Media.

Eleven Democratic senators and independent Sen. Bernie Sanders wrote their request in a letter to Pai Thursday that highlighted the local television media conglomerate’s recent move to force its anchors in dozens of U.S. cities to read a scripted, uniform segment blasting “fake news” and media bias that favors liberals.

Norman Defends Pulling out Pistol in Diner
‘I didn’t do anything wrong,’ South Carolina rep says

South Carolina Republican Rep. Ralph Norman is taking heat for pulling out his pistol during a meeting with constituents last week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Ralph Norman on Monday continued defending himself from criticism for removing his handgun from his blazer jacket and placing it on the table at a “coffee with constituents” event in South Carolina on Friday.

“Two days in a row I’ve had front-page news question the legality of what I did,” Norman said on Fox News Monday morning. “I didn’t do anything wrong.”

Hardy Campaign Adviser Fired After He Made Ex-Fiancee His ‘Slave’
Benjamin Sparks was fired from consultant’s job working on Rep. Cresent Hardy’s campaign

Former Nevada Rep. Cresent Hardy fired political strategist Benjamin Sparks from his campaign amid a domestic battery investigation. (D.A. Banks/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Benjamin Sparks, a political strategist who has worked on several high-profile Republican campaigns over the last decade, was fired in March from his position working on former Rep. Cresent Hardy’s campaign after police responded to a domestic dispute between Sparks and his then-fiancee.

It turns out Sparks and his fiancée had signed a contract in November making the woman his “slave in training,” the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported, citing text messages, emails and a copy of the contract the ex-fiancee shared with the publication.

Rep. Elizabeth Esty Won’t Seek Re-Election in Wake of Abusive Staffer Disclosures
Connecticut Democrat’s decision opens up potentially competitive seat

Rep. Elizabeth Esty, D-Conn., says she will retire at the end of this term amid reports of her questionable handling of a former chief of staff who battered, threatened, and sexually harassed a subordinate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Embattled Rep. Elizabeth Esty has decided not to run for re-election, she announced via Facebook on Monday.

The Connecticut Democrat faced bipartisan criticism over the weekend after multiple news outlets reported her questionable handling of a former top aide who battered, threatened, and sexually harassed a female employee in her office.

Tenney Blames ‘Deep State’ for Carson Furniture Debacle
HUD secretary would not purchase expensive dining set because he grew up ‘in poverty,’ rep says

Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-N.Y., believes the so-called “deep state” was behind the Ben Carson furniture affair. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Claudia Tenney found herself on a rhetorical island again Wednesday after she claimed the so-called “deep state” was responsible for ordering an extravagantly priced dining set for Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson’s office.

“Ben Carson is so misunderstood,” the New York Republican said on a local upstate New York radio show before blaming an unnamed person in the deep state for ordering the furniture.

Rooney Adopts New GOP Line: House Investigations Have ‘Lost All Credibility’
House Intelligence Committee to close Russia investigation

Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Fla., arrives with Alabama GOP Rep. Martha Roby on the West Front of the Capitol before Donald Trump was sworn in as president on Jan. 20, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congressional committees can no longer conduct credible investigations without poisoning them with partisan politics, Rep. Tom Rooney said.

“We’ve gone completely off the rails, and now we’re just basically a political forum for people to leak information to drive the day’s news,” the Florida Republican said in an interview Monday with CNN. “We’ve lost all credibility, and we’re going to issue probably two different reports, unfortunately. ... In that regard, that’s why I called for the investigation to end.”

Bernie Sanders Rips DCCC For Smearing Democrat Before Texas Primary
Laura Moser made the May 22 runoff in Texas 7th District

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., criticized the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for openly rejecting one of the party's own candidates, Laura Moser, ahead of the Texas primaries Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As Sen. Bernie Sanders injects himself into the Texas political landscape with a swing through the state this weekend, the 2016 presidential candidate blasted the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for smearing one of the party’s own candidates, Laura Moser, before Tuesday’s Longhorn State primaries.

Sanders found it “outrageous” that the DCCC would release negative research on Moser before her crowded primary battle with other Democrats in Texas’ 7th District, the Vermont independent told the Texas Tribune.