Bill Flores

Word on the Hill: Comey Time
Seersucker Thursdays begin

D.C. will be watching as former FBI director James B. Comey testifies today. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former FBI director James Comey is heading to Capitol Hill this morning and D.C. is preparing in many different ways.

The Capitol will be hectic leading up to the 10 a.m. hearing. For those outside of the Capitol complex, or able to leave work for a couple of hours, there are a handful of bars in D.C. opening early, pouring cleverly titled drinks, and taking advantage of some great TV.

Word on the Hill: Day of Reason and/or Prayer?
New tech caucus, and staffer movement

California Rep. Ted Lieu wants to celebrate reason and logic. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

If Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., had his way, today would be a National Day of Reason as well as the National Day of Prayer.

Lieu introduced a bill in Congress in April that would declare May 4 to be a National Day of Reason as a secular alternative to the National Day of Prayer to recognize the importance of reason in the betterment of humanity, he said.

Republicans Want to Keep at It on Health Care Overhaul
Conservatives still aim to use current fiscal year reconciliation bill

New Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur thinks there is room for Republican conservatives and moderates to work together on health care. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In a sign of the renewed Republican optimism surrounding a health care overhaul, several House GOP members say they still want to use the budget reconciliation process for the current fiscal year to pass legislation, effectively providing themselves with less than two months to get a deal.

Leadership has yet to make any concrete decisions on the path forward for health care after pulling a bill last week that would have partially repealed and replaced the 2010 health care law.

Word on the Hill: Happy Friday
Books, restaurants and trees

This week was taken up with debate over the Republican repeal and replace health care effort. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

After a busy week on the Hill, there’s a lot to do off the Hill this weekend to chill out.

Temperatures are supposed to reach 75 degrees in the District on Saturday, so it will be a great time to check out what’s left of the Cherry Blossoms on the Tidal Basin.

Photos of the Week: Health Care, Health Care and More Health Care
The week of March 6 on Capitol Hill as captured by Roll Call's photographers

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., held a presser Thursday on the GOP plan to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, complete with a PowerPoint. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Republicans started the week by rolling out their option to repealing and replacing the 2010 health care law on Monday evening. From there, several news conferences held by GOP leaders — and one headlined by Speaker Paul D. Ryan with series of charts — began the sale of the bill to House members. Some conservatives, however, are on not on board with the plan despite it passing two committees. 

Paul Ryan Returns to ‘Binary Choice’ Rhetoric
Speaker used same phrase to argue for Trump presidency

Ryan argues that the current GOP health care plan is a “binary choice,” echoing his arguments that Trump should be president. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan is selling the Republicans’ health care bill the same way he did the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump. But on the health front, his pitch is falling flat with conservatives.

“Binary choice” is the phrase the Wisconsin Republican used during the presidential election to describe his reason for supporting Trump over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Ryan acknowledged throughout the campaign that both candidates were flawed but Trump was the better of two options, the only one who would help Republicans advance their legislative agenda.

Word on the Hill: Congressional Dinner
Television safeguard awards and singer and athlete in D.C.

MSNBC host Greta Van Susteren will emcee Wednesday night’s Congressional Correspondents Dinner. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The day after President Donald Trump, an outspoken critic of the media, gave his joint session address to Congress, members of Congress and the media are getting together.

The annual Congressional Correspondents Dinner is tonight, when the media invites sources and politicians to be their guests for the event.

Word on the Hill: Recess Wrap Up
Former vice presidential candidate’s birthday this weekend

Artist Kelsea Ballerini takes a selfie with Rep. Joseph Crowley in Los Angeles on Feb. 11. (Photo courtesy of the Recording Academy)

Recess is coming to an end. Members did everything from hosting town halls to traveling overseas and attending CPAC.

One bipartisan group of music lovers kicked off recess a little early with a congressional briefing hosted by The Recording Academy on Feb. 11, during Grammy weekend in Los Angeles.

Health Coverage Questions Persist for Republicans
Chances of House GOP blueprint passing the Senate remain unclear

Speaker Paul D. Ryan told reporters the House GOP health care measure will be introduced after the Presidents Day recess but it might face opposition from Republicans in the Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As Republican lawmakers face questions from constituents and colleagues about their plans to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, there are few answers available, starting with what kind of legislation can pass the Senate. 

Republicans do not need Democratic support to undo much of the law, since they will move the legislation through the budget reconciliation process that only requires majority support in the Senate. But with only 52 Republican senators, the GOP plan will have to get support from both their conservatives and moderates, and it’s not clear what can get everyone onboard.