Abortion

House to Take First Step to Overturn D.C. Assisted Suicide Law
Local groups plan to protest latest salvo against home rule

House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz has taken an aggressive stance on reviewing D.C. laws and budgets. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A House committee will take the first official step Monday evening to overturn a new Washington, D.C., assisted suicide law, raising concerns locally that a Republican-controlled Congress will be emboldened to interfere with city government under President Donald Trump.

Actually overturning the so-called Death With Dignity Act would require an improbable series of events. After the vote on the disapproval resolution at the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, the measure would have to pass floor votes in both the House and the Senate president before Feb. 17. That’s according to a timeline set out by the city’s Home Rule Act.

Democrats in a Dilemma Over Trump's Court Nominee
Senate Democrats will get a lot of advice about how to handle President Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court — and it appears they need it.

Judge Neil Gorsuch, Supreme Court Justice nominee, meets with North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in her Hart building office on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

There’s pressure from liberal advocacy groups and the party’s energized base for Democrats to pull out all the stops in an attempt to block Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court confirmation. Not only do those interests have concerns about his approach to abortion rights and environmental law, but they thirst for revenge for Republicans’ obstruction of former President Barack Obama’s nominee for the same seat.

Some moderate legal and political commentators, meanwhile, have urged Democrats to wait for another potential Supreme Court nominee to launch an all-out confirmation war — a possibility during the Trump administration since two justices are in their 80s. Gorsuch would replace the late conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, so his elevation from a federal appeals court in Denver wouldn’t shift the ideological balance of the high court anyway.

Never Normal Is the New Normal at the White House
Strife when President Trump should still be in his Honeymoon period

Walter Shapiro writes that it should have dawned on everyone — even the craven and the credulous — that there never will be a normal interlude with Trump in the White House. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

There are indelible details, admittedly sometimes exaggerated, that shape our memories of every presidency:

A drunk Richard Nixon talking with the White House portraits. Jimmy Carter monitoring who used the White House tennis courts. George H.W. Bush looking baffled by a supermarket scanner. Bill Clinton … nah, let’s not go there. Barack Obama limiting himself to just seven lightly salted almonds a night.

Word on the Hill: Week Three of Trump
House Democrats go on retreat this week

Showing this week: a film that looks back on Barack Obama’s presidency. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

We’ve entered into the third week of Donald Trump’s presidency.

This week on Capitol Hill might be a little lighter than last.

Supreme Court Nominee’s Legal Approach Follows Scalia
Analysis of past rulings reveal an ideology similar to late justice’s

Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, left, and Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley arrive to speak to reporters following their meeting in the Capitol on Feb. 1. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Judge Neil Gorsuch included a line in his first remarks as a Supreme Court nominee that signals just how closely his approach to deciding cases aligns with the late Antonin Scalia, the polarizing and reliably conservative justice whose seat Gorsuch would fill.

“A judge who likes every outcome he reaches is very likely a bad judge, stretching for results he prefers rather than those the law demands,” Gorsuch, 49, said at the White House last Tuesday.

Defeat or Pyrrhic Victory? The Democrats’ Dismal Choices on Gorsuch
Part of the blame — dismal Democratic candidates in 2016

President Donald Trump and Judge Neil Gorsuch in the East Room of the White House. If confirmed, Gorsuch would fill the seat left vacant with the death of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia in February 2016. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

In the best of all possible worlds, Merrick Garland and Neil Gorsuch would both soon grace the Supreme Court. But, alas, someone like Henry Clay is no longer in Congress to negotiate the Compromise of 2017.

So, dispirited Democrats are left with their choice of frustrating outcomes as they rage against the success of Mitch McConnell’s scorched-earth strategy to deprive Garland of a vote all through 2016.

New Poll Shows Unease With ‘Nuclear Option’ for Supreme Court Pick
Survey conducted largely before Trump announced his choice

Tenth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge — and now Supreme Court nominee — Neil Gorsuch delivers prepared remarks before a group of attorneys in Denver in January. (David Zalubowski/AP Photo)

A new poll commissioned by progressive groups has found that nearly seven in 10 voters say they’re against using the “nuclear option” to confirm a Supreme Court justice.

The survey was conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research for NARAL, Every Voice and End Citizens United, and shared first with Roll Call. It asked about the Senate Democrats’ insistence that the current nominee be confirmed with a supermajority of at least 60 votes. 

Democratic Class of 2018 Key to Gorsuch Supreme Court Fight
Manchin the first Democrat to meet Trump’s nominee

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin III, right, meets in his office with President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch, on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Joe Manchin III on Wednesday became the first Democrat to meet with Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, as Republicans began the long quest for Democratic votes for the conservative judge from Colorado.

When asked if Gorsuch should need 60 senators to support his confirmation, as he would if Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon and other Democrats follow through on a filibuster threat, Manchin said nominees should always need bipartisan backing, including for the president’s Cabinet and lower courts.

Neil Gorsuch Nominated by Trump for U.S. Supreme Court
10th Circuit judge lauded by president for his ‘extraordinary résumé’

President Donald Trump nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House January 31, 2017 in Washington, DC. If confirmed, Gorsuch would fill the seat left vacant with the death of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia in February 2016. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Tuesday announced his nomination of U.S. Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, setting up a confirmation showdown with Senate Democrats still upset over how Republicans blocked the last pick. 

In a prime-time event broadcast from the East Room of the White House, Trump touted Gorsuch as among the finest and most brilliant legal minds in the country — and a fulfillment of his campaign promise to find the best judge in the country to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

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.