messaging

Freedom Caucus Isn’t Backing Down After Trump Threat
Conservatives say they’re up for any challenge from the right

House Freedom Caucus member Trent Franks said if President Donald Trump wanted to find someone to challenge him from the right in 2018, he was welcome to try. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

If President Donald Trump’s intention was to intimidate House Freedom Caucus members with his assertion on Twitter that “we must fight them” in 2018, it didn’t work.

“If somebody can get to the right of me in the primary, God bless him,” Freedom Caucus member Trent Franks said.

Trump Ready to Fight House Freedom Caucus
President threatens to help oust members whom he blames for health care failure

President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday that the House Freedom Caucus “will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don’t get on the team, & fast.” (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump, still smarting from his first major legislative failure, threatened Thursday to help oust House Freedom Caucus members from office next year.

The president delivered the intraparty broadside after the conservative faction — and Republican moderates — refused to support a bill that would have repealed and replaced the Obama administration’s 2010 health care law. Trump and Speaker Paul D. Ryan pulled the bill Friday when they concluded they lacked the 216 GOP votes needed to pass it.

Corker Criticizes Ryan for Not Wanting Trump to Work With Democrats
Tennessee Republican: ‘We have come a long way in our country’

Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker appeared to criticize House Speaker Paul D. Ryan in a Thursday tweet. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s pronouncement that he does not want President Donald Trump working with Democrats on health care wasn’t received well by one senior Republican.

Sen. Bob Corker tweeted that “we have come a long way in our country when the speaker of one party urges a president NOT to work with the other party to solve a problem.”

Opinion: Not So Fast, Democrats. You Had a Good Day, but Now What?
Party needs to focus on a clear message

Democratic leaders such as Charles E. Schumer and Nancy Pelosi may be celebrating the GOP’s recent health care debacle, but they need to focus on making sure that Americans know what they stand for, Curtis writes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As the Republican Party has learned, it’s much easier to be the party of “no” than to actually have a plan to lead. So while Democrats are celebrating a GOP in disarray, the party out of power needs a message and a plan.

Understandably, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosicelebrated as the GOP’s new-and-improved health care plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act failed. But long term, she must truly want to experience a return to the speaker’s post. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer knows just how to rile Donald Trump, his fellow New Yorker. But he still has to call Trump Mr. President.

Group Strives to ‘Make Congress Great Again’
Legislative Branch Capacity Working Group has a bipartisan following

Lee Drutman, left, and Kevin Kosar are the founders of the Legislative Branch Capacity Working Group, which is focused on bringing together congressional staff from all sides to brainstorm ways to improve Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Its name is a mouthful, but the Legislative Branch Capacity Working Group has gained a following for its mission to strengthen a polarized and unpopular Congress.

The founders come from think tanks in different positions on the political spectrum. Kevin Kosar spent 11 years at the Congressional Research Service before leaving for the “free market” R Street Institute. Lee Drutman is a senior fellow at the more liberal New America.

Trump Slowly Wades Back Into Choppy Health Care Waters
White House signals desire for more methodical try at repleacing Obama's 2010 law

Ready to try again? Rep. Greg Walden and other lawmakers might get another shot at reworking the health insurance system. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The White House is inching ever-so-slightly toward another try at a health care overhaul package -- and Trump administration officials signaled on Wednesday they want a more methodical process this time.

In the hours and days after President Donald Trump and Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., decided to pull a GOP-crafted measure aimed at repealing and replacing the Obama administration’s 2010 health law, the chief executive and his top aides signaled the effort was dead.

Why Ryan Is Key to Republican Moderates’ Survival
Health care debacle has left GOP centrists without political cover

Some House Republican moderates are pushing Speaker Paul D. Ryan to try a different approach on health care. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Some moderate Republicans were left out in the cold by the GOP leadership’s push of a deeply unpopular health care bill over the last month.

And now, with leadership signaling it’s sticking by its commitment to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, they have every reason to want Speaker Paul D. Ryan to try a different approach — to save themselves and their party.

Why Committee Chairmen Should Be Concerned About Trump
White House has sent veiled warnings to appropriators, tax writers and authorizers

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., holds a news conference in the Capitol last Wednesday. The embattled chairman’s recent actions offer a cautionary tale for his colleagues. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

ANALYSIS | For Republican committee chairmen, House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes has had a month that amounts to a cautionary tale.

One day, you can be the respected chairman of one of the last remaining bipartisan committees on Capitol Hill. A few weeks later, your ranking member is calling for you to step aside from the most important probe the panel has done in years. Such is life for Republican committee chairmen in the Trump era.

Senate Democrats Vow to Block Border Wall Funds
Schumer ‘prepared to fight this all the way’

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer wants to block President Donald Trump’s budget proposals on immigration and the border wall project. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer on Tuesday said Democrats will block President Donald Trump’s budget proposals on expanding federal immigration forces and starting the border wall project.

“Senate Democrats are prepared to fight this all the way,” the New York Democrat said at an event organized by the National Council of La Raza, the country’s largest Hispanic civil rights advocacy group. “Instead of spending taxpayer dollars on a pointless wall, we should be investing in creating jobs and fixing our infrastructure.”

Club for Growth to Air TV Ad Against Handel in Georgia Special
Outside group has endorsed Bob Gray in race to replace Tom Price

Karen Handel has been the Republican front-runner in the special election to replace former Georgia Rep. Tom Price. (Courtesy Karen Handel for Congress)

Club for Growth Action is poised to air a television ad against early Republican front-runner Karen Handel beginning Wednesday in Georgia’s 6th District special election, according to a release first obtained by Roll Call and Inside Elections.

It’s a $250,000 ad buy on Atlanta cable, according to a Club source, and is scheduled to run through the initial April 18 election. If none of the 18 candidates receives a majority of the vote in the jungle primary, the top two finishers, regardless of party, will move on to a June 20 runoff. The conservative outside group endorsed one of Handel’s 10 GOP opponents, businessman Bob Gray, on March 14.