congressional-affairs

Lawmakers React to Latest Trump-Russia Bombshell: ‘What Now?!’
Report: President asked two top intel officials to deny collusion with Moscow

President Donald Trump speaks during a joint statment with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin at the President's House on May 22, 2017 in Jerusalem, Israel. (Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)

BY JOHN T. BENNETT, LINDSEY McPHERSON AND REMA RAHMAN

Lawmakers on Monday evening seemed resigned to yet another bombshell report suggesting President Donald Trump attempted to interfere with a federal investigation aimed at, in part, determining whether there was collusion between his campaign and the Russia government.

Flynn May Have Lied During Security Clearance Renewal, Says Cummings
Oversight ranking member asks chairman to subpoena records from White House

Rep. Elijah Cummings, left, has asked House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz, right, to subpoena records from the White House about Michael Flynn. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The ranking member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is asking the panel’s top lawmaker to use his subpoena power to ask the White House for documents related to former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

Rep. Elijah Cummings wrote to Chairman Jason Chaffetz that the committee had in its possession documents that appeared to show Flynn lied to investigators in 2016 when he was getting his security clearance renewed.

Hill and Mueller Don’t Have to Clash, but It Will Not Be Easy
Congressional inquiries and prosecutors have different purposes, but the same witnesses

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller’s appointment as special counsel for the Russia investigation was greeted positively by lawmakers, but they disagreed on the effect his probe will have on their own investigations. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congressional inquiries and special counsels can productively coexist, serving complementary purposes because of their reciprocal approaches, unless they’re unable to settle inevitable fights over the same documents and star witnesses.

That may be the best response to a question many on Capitol Hill started asking as soon as Robert S. Mueller III was appointed to run the government’s probe of Russian interference in last year’s election and whether Moscow collaborated with President Donald Trump’s campaign:

‘Law and Order’ President Meets Ultimate Lawman
Should Trump be concerned? ‘Absolutely,’ GOP strategist says

Sources and lawmakers describe former FBI Director Robert Mueller as a “superstar” and highly qualified to head the Russia investigation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Donald Trump is fond of describing himself as a “law-and-order” president. Suddenly, however, the fate of his presidency could be decided by a man who embodies that characterization: Robert Mueller, a true lawman’s lawman.

The irony is thicker than a column on the White House’s North Portico. And for Trump, his party and the republic, the stakes could not be higher.

Opinion: Trump Troubles Not an Excuse for Hill GOP’s Failures
Republicans on the Hill should be desperate to strike some deals

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., holds his weekly news conference in the Capitol on Thursday, May 18, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The distractions of Donald J. Trump are creating opportunity as much as crisis for Capitol Hill Republicans — even if they’re unwilling to seize it.

By now, it’s conventional wisdom in Washington that the Trump agonistes have frustrated the GOP agenda. But like much considered and collective inside-the-Beltway thought, that argument is pure horse hockey.

How the Koch Network Could Sink Tax Overhaul
Lobbying network poised for policy win

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: Americans for Prosperity Foundation chairman and Koch Industries Executive Vice President David H. Koch (C) listens to speakers during the Defending the American Dream Summit at the Washington Convention Center November 4, 2011 in Washington, DC. The conservative political summit is organized by Americans for Prosperity, which was founded with the support of Koch and his brother David H. Koch. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The lobbying and political network of Charles and David Koch, bogeymen to Democrats for years, is poised for a significant policy win — but it will come at the expense of fellow conservatives on Capitol Hill.

Their victory also could derail a policy goal they share with those same Republican lawmakers: a permanent comprehensive overhaul of the nation’s tax code.

Senators Warn FCC, Trump Administration About Freedom of the Press
Comes after CQ Roll Call reporter was pinned against a wall while covering the commission

Iowa Sen. Charles E. Grassley says it is customary for reporters to question public officials after meetings, as he is seen doing here. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senators, including Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, are warning the Federal Communications Commission about its treatment of reporters after a CQ Roll Call reporter was manhandled Thursday.

“The Federal Communications Commission needs to take a hard look at why this happened and make sure it doesn’t happen again. As The Washington Post pointed out, it’s standard operating procedure for reporters to ask questions of public officials after meetings and news conferences,” the Iowa Republican said. “It happens all day, every day. There’s no good reason to put hands on a reporter who’s doing his or her job.”  

Report: Trump Told Russians Comey Firing Relieved ‘Great Pressure’
Close WH aide to president allegedly a person of interest to FBI

President Donald Trump walks toward Marine One before departing from the White House on April 28. Two reports out Friday allege he told Russian officials firing FBI Director James Comey helped him, and that a close aide is a person of interest in a FBI probe of the 2016 election. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Trump reportedly told senior Russian officials that firing FBI Director James Comey relieved “great pressure” on him because of allegations of nefarious ties between his campaign and Russia. And another report places a senior White House official as a “person of interest” in the bureau’s ongoing investigation.

“I just fired the head of the FBI. He was crazy, a real nut job,” the New York Times reported Friday, citing a document that summarizes his Oval Office meeting earlier this month with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Moscow’s ambassador to Washington.

Having Fun With the Health Care Bill Holdup
Hoyer needles McCarthy about delay in sending House bill to Senate

House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer had some fun with Republican delays in transmitting their health care measure to the Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Minority Leader Steny H. Hoyer had a little fun with his Republican colleagues’ delay in transmitting their health care overhaul legislation to the Senate.

“You can imagine my shock, chagrin and surprise when I learned yesterday that bill has not gone to the Senate. Apparently it’s gone from one chair to the other chair in the desks before me,” the Maryland Democrat needled House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., in their colloquy on the floor Friday. He asked McCarthy if there would need to be another vote on the bill and when it will be sent to the Senate.

Photos of the Week: Lawmakers Reel and Run
The Week of May 15 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Arizona Sen. John McCain talks with reporters on Wednesday after a vote in the Capitol about whether a special prosecutor is needed to investigate President Donald Trump’s alleged ties to Russia. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

BY BILL CLARK AND TOM WILLIAMS

The House returned Tuesday after a one-week recess to a Washington reeling from new allegations related to the firing of FBI Director James B. Comey and revelations that the president shared classified information with Russian officials in the Oval Office.