Claire McCaskill

Bernie Sanders, the Man With Single-Payer Clout
Vermont independent continues to direct the future of national Democratic Party

Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders bashed special interest groups when introducing the so-called Medicare for All Act of 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The seismic shift in support for Sen. Bernie Sanders’ plan to transform the U.S. health care system into a single-payer program indicates the reach the Vermont independent has within the Democratic Party.

At the same time that his onetime presidential foe Hillary Clinton is reminding people of the party’s devastating loss last fall, Sanders is trying to define its future. His bill to enroll every American in Medicare drew 16 co-sponsors, 16 more than when he first introduced similar legislation in 2013.

No Easy Answer for Vulnerable Dems When Trump Sends Invite
Heitkamp took Air Force One to N.D. event, but McCaskill skipped one in Missouri

President Donald Trump is pushing Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., to support a coming tax-overhaul package. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

One by one, President Donald Trump asked state and local officials to join him onstage during his Wednesday tax overhaul roadshow stop in North Dakota. And he saved perhaps the most important one, at least when it comes to getting the votes for such a rewrite of the tax code, for last, Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp.

“You are all in favor of tax cuts,” Trump said to the group, as the North Dakota officials joined the audience in applause. “They work hard. They are with you 100 percent,” the president told the audience.

Trump Reaches Out to Centrist Democrats on Taxes
Trump’s team has ‘some optimism’ that Heitkamp will support coming overhaul package

President Donald Trump is making overtures to centrist Democrats like Sens. Jon Tester and Heidi Heitkamp, who will accompany him on Air Force One on Wednesday to her home state of North Dakota. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump is sending mixed messages to incumbent Senate Democrats up for re-election in red states as he and GOP leaders try to woo bipartisan support for a major tax overhaul package. 

With his public calls for centrist Democrats to support an emerging GOP tax plan, Trump has underscored his desire to cement a legislative victory before the 2018 midterm elections. But Democrats wonder if he is sincere or if he simply intends to attack them, as he did last week by calling out Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Missouri, during a tax speech in her home state. 

Trump’s Tax Speech Shows Entire Agenda Rests on Overhaul Push
President: ‘Foundation of our job-creation agenda’ is tax rate, code changes

President Donald Trump arrives to give remarks during an appearance at the Loren Cook Company Wednesday in Springfield, Missouri. President Trump spoke about  his plans for tax reform. (Photo by Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)

 

 

McCaskill Pushes Pentagon for Answers on Improper Payments

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., wants more information from the Pentagon on its so-called improper statements to contractors and individuals. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Claire McCaskill wants some answers from Defense Secretary James Mattis on the Pentagon’s efforts to curb so-called improper payments to contractors and individuals.

McCaskill sent Mattis a letter Wednesday seeking an update on reports of inadequate Pentagon compliance with a law that mandates monitoring overpayments and underpayments, which totaled $1.2 trillion across the federal government between 2003 and 2016, according to the Government Accountability Office.

McCaskill to Hold 25 Town Halls Amid Challenges From Right and Left
‘Whether they agree with me or not, every Missourian is my boss,’ Missouri senator says

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., faces a tough road to re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Facing a tough re-election campaign next year, Sen. Claire McCaskill said she she plans to hold 25 town hall meetings with constituents this month.

President Donald Trump won Missouri by nearly 20 points, and Republicans are eager to try and flip the seat. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the race Tossup.

McCaskill Gets Primary Challenger
Former Obamacare marketplace worker running to Missouri Democrat’s left

Missouri Senate candidate Angelica Earl says Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill is too conservative on issues such as health care. (AngelicaforMissouri.com)

A former health care marketplace worker is challenging Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill for the Democratic nomination in 2018, calling the incumbent “too conservative.”

Angelica Earl, a political novice, said she rejects McCaskill’s push for a bipartisan solution to health care. The 31-year-old from St. Louis County said she supports “single-payer health care for all,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

Appointed Senators: Some Stay, Some Go
Alabama’s Luther Strange faces the voters on Aug. 15

Appointed Sen. Luther Strange is campaigning to keep his job in a special election in Alabama. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Being appointed to the Senate seems like a politician’s dream come true. Skip the hard work and tedium of campaigning and go directly to the Senate chamber.

But an appointed senator at some point must face the voters if he wants to continue serving. For Alabama Republican Sen. Luther Strange, (who was appointed to the Senate to replace Jeff Sessions), the first encounter with voters will come next week when he will be one of nine Republicans on the Aug. 15 primary ballot.

Missouri’s Josh Hawley Forms Exploratory Committee for Senate Bid
GOP donors have been urging the state attorney general to challenge McCaskill

Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., greets newly elected Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley (right) prior to speaking to supporters in Springfield, Missouri in November. (Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley has formed an exploratory committee with the Federal Election Commission for a challenge to Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill.

“Josh’s state campaign committee has ceased expenditures and the soliciting or accepting of donations while he considers becoming a federal candidate,” Hawley spokesman Scott Paradise said in an email, according to the Kansas City Star

Senate Looks Ahead to Tax, Debt Limit Debates After Recess
McConnell predicts reconciliation process for tax overhaul

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell met Tuesday with Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on raising the debt limit. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

By NIELS LESNIEWSKI and JOE WILLIAMS

Tuesday might not be the last time the Senate leaders address reporters before departing for August recess, but their messages were already setting the stage for September.