Technology & Innovation

Legislative Agenda Takes Back Seat to Trump’s ‘Beautiful Apartment’
Former Jeb Bush aide: ‘One step forward, one step back’

President Donald Trump opted against selling his legislative agenda in an address to supporters in Phoenix on Tuesday. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump roared, blamed, boasted, omitted and obfuscated Tuesday night at a campaign rally in Phoenix, but there was one thing he decided against doing: selling his stalled legislative agenda.

A night after delivering a measured and somewhat-detailed prime-time address that laid out his new counterterrorism-focused Afghanistan strategy, Trump’s criticism of the news media, his increasingly visible insecurities and his fixation on his political base took over just minutes into his remarks in the Valley of the Sun.

Podcast: Jeff Flake Feels the Heat
The Big Story, Episode 68

Arizona Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake talk before the start of the Senate Foreign Relations hearing to debate the authorization for use of military force in Syria on Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Jeff Flake's path to re-election is complicated. The Arizona Republican was potentially vulnerable even before President Donald Trump touched down in Phoenix to criticize him at a campaign style rally.

Now Flake, who has argued for more civility in politics, finds himself in a big fight in both the GOP primary and, if he gets past that, a compressed general election. Roll Call elections analyst Nathan Gonzales discusses the 2018 Senate race in Arizona with Roll Call leadership editor Jason Dick on the Big Story Podcast.

Democrats Warn Trump Against Shutdown, Remain Opposed to Border Wall
Threat 'is the polar opposite of leadership,' House Appropriations Committee ranking member says

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., are warning President Donald Trump not to shut down the government. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Threatening to shut down the government is the “polar opposite of leadership” and it “won’t accomplish anything” other than “chaos,” congressional Democrats warned President Donald Trump on Wednesday. 

During a rally in Arizona Tuesday night, Trump said he is willing to risk a shutdown to secure funding for a border wall. 

7 Ways Trump’s Arizona Speech Complicates Congress’ Fall Agenda
President threatens a shutdown, criticizes senators and their chamber’s rules

President Donald and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, pictured shaking hands after Trump's address to Congress in February, are at odds over willingness to shutdown the government and change the Senate's filibuster rules. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Short on legislative accomplishments so far in his tenure, President Donald Trump went out of his way to complicate Congress’ fall legislative agenda during a campaign-style rally in Phoenix, Arizona, on Tuesday.

Here are seven ways in just that one speech that Trump said things that don’t bode well for his ability to work with Congress:

Trump Threatens Shutdown, Attacks GOP Senators During Angry Rally
President on Sen. Flake: ‘Nobody knows who the hell he is’

Protesters chant and wave signs across the street from the Phoenix Convention Center as President Donald Trump holds a rally inside on Tuesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated at 9:40 a.m. An angry and defiant President Donald Trump used a Tuesday campaign rally to threaten a government shutdown, slam two Republican senators in their home state, and pour rhetorical gasoline on racial tensions he has twice stoked since the deadly Charlottesville, Virginia, white supremacist protests.

Trump stuck to his staff’s script at the start of a rally in Phoenix, reading prepared remarks from a teleprompter just as he did during a stoic speech the night before to announce his Afghanistan policy. But it didn’t last, with the president appearing to put even more distance between himself and mainstream Republicans and even some members of his own Cabinet.

Trump Says ‘Obstructionist Democrats’ Undermining National Security
President sends mixed messages before leaving for Camp David security summit

President Donald Trump, here aboard the USS Gerald R. Ford in March, lashed out at Democrats over what he says is their intent to "delay" his national security policies. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images file photo)

Donald Trump began the last workday of yet another chaotic week of his presidency by accusing Democrats of hindering the country’s security — while also sending some mixed signals.

About 90 minutes before his scheduled departure for a Camp David summit with his national security team on North Korea and related issues, the president took to Twitter with contradictory messages about the state of American security.

Opinion: Congress’ Passive Response to North Korea: ‘Not My Table’
Lawmakers need to step up

When dealing with President Donald Trump — especially when problems with North Korea are looming — members of Congress should remember that they are part of a co-equal branch of government, Shapiro writes. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Just as he did back during Black History Month in February with his startling discovery that Frederick Douglass “is being recognized more and more,” Donald Trump demonstrated in Monday’s White House statement on Charlottesville, Virginia, that he can learn and grow in office.

In 48 short hours, Trump discovered that “racism is evil” and groups like “the KKK, neo-Nazis [and] white supremacists … are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

GOP Members Face Tough Town Halls at Home
Man tells LaMalfa ‘May you die in pain’ over health care vote

Republican Rep. Mark Meadows  faced criticism at a town hall in his North Carolina district for his leadership on the House health care repeal and replace plan. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

While August recess gives members of Congress a chance to escape Washington, D.C., and spend time in their districts, it also means answering to their constituents.

As town halls replace committee meetings during this last stretch of summer, Republican congressmen find themselves facing increasingly critical and at times raucous crowds of voters.

New House Art Contest Controversy Swirls
Finalist’s painting depicts Statue of Liberty as a Muslim woman

Members of the group We The People Rising posted a video of their meeting with Rep. Lou Correa’s staff asking that a controversial painting in the annual House student art competition be removed from his district office. (We the People Rising via YouTube)

A new congressional art competition controversy is swirling around California Rep. Lou Correa after his office selected a painting of the Statue of Liberty depicted as a Muslim woman.

We the People Rising, a group that advocates stricter enforcement of immigration, is arguing that the picture hanging in Correa’s district office in Santa Ana as a finalist for the annual competition is a violation of separation of church and state, the Orange County Register reported.

Border Wall, Agents Would Get $15 Billion Boost From Cornyn Bill
DHS was consulted, Senate majority whip says

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, conducts a news conference on border security legislation in the Capitol on August 3, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republicans introduced legislation Thursday that would authorize $15 billion for new border wall construction and technology, the hiring of thousands more Border Patrol and interior enforcement agents, and measures to withhold federal funds from so-called sanctuary cities.

The bill, authored by Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis., is a companion measure to a House bill introduced last month by Johnson’s counterpart, House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas.

New Hampshire Lawmakers Not Thrilled With Trump’s 'Drug-Infested Den' Comments
State’s all-Democratic delegation blasts president for January remarks

President Donald Trump on the phone in the Oval Office on June 27. During a call with his Mexican counterpart that day, Trump said “drug lords in Mexico” are “knocking the hell out of our country.” (John T. Bennett/CQ Roll Call file photo)

New Hampshire lawmakers are criticizing President Donald Trump over reports that he referred to the Granite State as a “drug-infested den” to his Mexican counterpart.

“No, Mr. President, you’re wrong about New Hampshire — but you have failed to help us fight the opioid crisis. We need recovery facilities NOW. Stop attacking health care and make the investments you promised,” Democratic Rep. Carol Shea-Porter said in a Facebook post about transcripts of a Jan. 27 telephone call between Trump and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto that were published by The Washington Post on Thursday.

Report: Kelly Tells Sessions His Job is Safe
New White House COS called Sessions over the weekend to tell him he would not be fired

Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ job security has been in question after President Donald Trump attacked him on Twitter. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

New White House Chief of Staff John Kelly called Jeff Sessions on Saturday to tell him his post as attorney general was safe, despite the fact Kelly and Sessions’ boss, President Donald Trump, has levied repeated public attacks against Sessions in recent weeks.

In one of his first moves in his new position, Kelly told Sessions that the White House remained supportive of the AG’s work, The Associated Press reported Thursday. And although Trump was offended when Sessions recused himself from the ongoing investigation into Russia’s meddling in U.S. elections, the president did not plan to fire Sessions or hope he would resign.

Hoekstra, Trump’s Pick For Ambassador, Has Views at Odds With the Dutch
Hoekstra’s positions on abortion, gay rights, and Muslims have surprised some Netherlands observers

Former Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., prepares to testify before a House Subcommittee in 2014. He has been nominated as President Trump's Ambassador to the Netherlands. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump nominated former Rep. Pete Hoekstra to be ambassador to the Netherlands last week, but some of his views, as well as his ties to Trump, are being poorly received in the liberal nation.

The Dutch government will need to approve Hoekstra’s nomination, and the U.S. Senate will need to confirm it before he takes office.

Trump Backs GOP Immigration Bill, but Rift Within Party Widens
Senate’s No. 2 Republican sees ‘opportunity’ for Congress amid WH ‘chaos’

Activists demonstrate in Washington against President Donald Trump’s immigration policies in May. On Wednesday, Trump threw his backing behind new immigration legislation by Sens. Tom Cotton of Arkansas and David Perdue of Georgia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Donald Trump on Wednesday waded into the politically choppy waters of immigration law alongside two fellow Republicans, but the brief image of party unity failed to completely obscure a growing rift with other GOP senators.

Trump hosted Republican Sens. Tom Cotton of Arkansas and and David Perdue of Georgia, a longtime ally, at the White House to discuss their legislation that would impose a skills-based criteria on individuals hoping to obtain U.S. citizenship. It was a moment of Republican comity after weeks of slowly increasing tensions between Trump and the Senate GOP conference.

Analysis: At Trump Rally, It Was 2016 Again
President mixes fear with bold promises, big boasts before friendly crowd

President Donald Trump speaks during the annual Days of Remembrance Holocaust ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on April 25, 2017. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump, echoing his populist 2016 campaign, mixed the politics of fear and bold promises as he returned to the campaign trail Tuesday evening in Ohio.

As he delivered parts of his remarks in Youngstown, it well could have been July 2016 with then-Republican nominee Trump at the podium. The world is more unsafe than ever. The United States has been run for too long by “stupid” politicians. People who wish to Americans harm are pouring over the southern border. Other countries are taking advantage of U.S. workers and consumers.