john-boehner

Freedom Caucus Member’s Book Slams Money-Obsessed Politicians
In ‘Drain the Swamp,’ Ken Buck also takes aim at NRCC’s ‘pay-to-play’ culture

Colorado Rep. Ken Buck attributes criticism of the House Freedom Caucus to “just plain jealousy.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Freedom Caucus member Ken Buck describes a money-hungry, lobbyist-influenced Republican leadership in his first book “Drain the Swamp” but he told CQ Roll Call that life is better for the hard-line conservative faction under Speaker Paul D. Ryan.

The Colorado Republican, now in his second term, has few kind words in his book released this week for Ryan’s predecessor, Ohio’s John A. Boehner, whom conservative lawmakers worked to oust. Boehner has since set up a practice at the K Street firm Squire Patton Boggs, and his spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

How Devin Nunes Got Where He Is Today
Networking, not expertise, got him the Intel gavel so many now want to take away

California Rep. Devin Nunes is facing criticism for gridlocking the House Intelligence Committee at a potentially historic point in history. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Any search for a single Republican capable of undermining not only his party’s efforts to project a modicum of independence from President Donald Trump, but also the House’s institutional standing in the world of global affairs oversight, would not normally focus on an alfalfa and dairy farmer turned congressman from California.

But such is the uniquely unsettled nature of Washington this spring that the open casting call for the most newly pilloried person at the Capitol this year is over after just 10 weeks, the role awarded by virtually unanimous consent to Devin Gerald Nunes.

White House Ends 10th Week Like Others: Embroiled in Controversies
Possible campaign collusion with Russia an anchor on Trump administration

The White House was on the defensive from multiple controversies at the end of its 10th month under the presidency of Donald Trump.(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Trump White House on Friday ended the week in a manner that has become routine: embroiled in controversies that staffers struggle to explain and that threaten the president’s legislative agenda.

The beginning of the week mirrored the pattern of most of the nine of Donald Trump’s presidency that came before it — recovering from a setback, this time in the form of the collapse of the GOP-crafted health bill’s failure. 

CQ Roll Call Staff Survey Finds GOP Doubts on Border Wall
Aides confident of GOP’s chances for enacting contentious policy overhauls

President Donald Trump gets a standing ovation after speaking at the Republican congressional retreat in Philadelphia on Jan. 26. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

At their retreat in Philadelphia last week, Republican congressional leaders painted a picture of unity with President Donald Trump. Their aides aren’t sure about that. 

Only 49 percent of the GOP staffers who responded to CQ Roll Call’s January Capitol Insiders Survey thought Congress would enact a law to construct a wall along the Mexican border, while just 44 percent see the $1 trillion infrastructure package Trump has promised becoming law.

How to Watch the Quirky Congressional Opening Day
Look for unusual traditions, cacophony and a few moments of bipartisanship

Congressional opening day collegiality may devolve into partisan posturing almost as soon as the swearing-in Bibles are shelved. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

If the last fall’s orientation period for the newest lawmakers was the Capitol Hill equivalent of freshman days at college, then the formal convening of the 115th Congress on Tuesday is the first day of school.  

And so it may be useful, for the congressional community as well as the throngs of well-wishers in town just for the festivities, to be reminded of some of the curious ways in which the customs of the day are different from all the others.

Boehner: ‘Thank God I’m Not in the Middle of This’
Former speaker compares president-elect to Teddy Roosevelt

Asked if he missed being involved more closely in this year’s election cycle, former House Speaker John A. Boehner replied, “Oh my God, no.” (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former House Speaker John A. Boehner weighed in on the incoming Trump administration Wednesday, calling the president-elect a “good guy” who wants to do “big things,” and advocating for bipartisanship in the new Congress.

Boehner told Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO that he and Trump have known each other for a long time. 

Milder Persona, Same Hard Line from New Freedom Caucus Chairman
Mark Meadows is eager to back Trump, but only when he adheres to the House GOP conservative group’s views

Mark Meadows, R-N.C., as elected to become the new chairman of the House Freedom Caucus. (Bill Clark/RC Roll Call)

A defining principle for the House Freedom Caucus can be summarized this way: The painful short-term political consequences for the Republican Party from provoking internal discord must be steadfastly disregarded in the name of long-term conservative purification.

The second lawmaker to lead the group, Mark Meadows of North Carolina, has a reputation as one of the friendliest and folksiest newcomers to influence in Congress. But he is signaling no interest in deviating from that combative rubric even in the coming era of unified GOP control over Washington, born out of an election where voters signaled an intense desire to end the capital norms of backbiting gridlock.

Where Are They Now? Power Players in 1992 and 2016
Today’s leaders were still works in progress during Bill Clinton's inaugural run

Presumptive Democratic nominee Bill Clinton waves to supporters with his wife Hillary at a rally in St. Louis in July 1992. (TIM CLARY/AFP/Getty Images file photo)

Much has been made about the fact that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has remained in the public eye for a quarter century.  

Many of her closest allies — and a few of her fiercest antagonists — have followed similarly storied paths through modern political history.  

Trump and the Ultimate Outsider-Turned-Insider
Mike Pence could be a ready-made bridge to Republicans in Congress

The wooden style of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, right, could be a counterweight to Donald Trump’s extemporaneous boisterousness, writes David Hawkings. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Before the House Freedom Caucus made it cool to leverage power by openly combating the Republican leadership, there was Mike Pence.  

During his dozen years in Congress, Pence was among the most confrontational conservatives of the previous decade. By pairing an absolutist approach to policy questions with unambiguous ambition, he became head of the Republican Study Committee, then home base for the House’s hardest right, before claiming the No. 3 spot in the GOP hierarchy with one of the most notable outsider-goes-inside maneuvers of recent congressional vintage.  

Trump and the Ultimate Outsider-Turned-Insider
Mike Pence could be a ready-made bridge to Republicans in Congress

The wooden style of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, right, could be a counterweight to Donald Trump’s extemporaneous boisterousness, writes David Hawkings. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Before the House Freedom Caucus made it cool to leverage power by openly combating the Republican leadership, there was Mike Pence.  

During his dozen years in Congress, Pence was among the most confrontational conservatives of the previous decade. By pairing an absolutist approach to policy questions with unambiguous ambition, he became head of the Republican Study Committee, then home base for the House’s hardest right, before claiming the No. 3 spot in the GOP hierarchy with one of the most notable outsider-goes-inside maneuvers of recent congressional vintage.