Continuing Resolution

Rubio Says Puerto Rico Recovery Needs Go Far Beyond Money
Logistical challenges could make situation on the ground even worse

Sen. Marco Rubio spoke to reporters in the Capitol on Tuesday about hurricane disaster relief for Puerto Rico. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Marco Rubio has a message for the Trump administration and his Republican colleagues: Puerto Rico has massive logistical challenges in recovering from Hurricane Maria that are at risk of getting worse, not better.

“If tomorrow we authorize $10 billion of aid to Puerto Rico, we would struggle to deliver it,” the Florida Republican told reporters after a meeting at the White House Tuesday.

Lawmakers Sing a Bipartisan Tune as a Bitter Fall Looms
Trump’s recent deal-making elicits confusion and hope

President Donald Trump's recent outreach to Democrats has elicited mixed reaction from both Republicans and Democrats. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Bipartisanship is the song of September.

After Deal, Debt Limit Talk Still Permeates Debates
McConnell dismisses calls to eliminate borrowing ceiling

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer sparred with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday on how to frame the debt limit deal Congress passed last week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Policymakers are still talking about last week’s surprise deal to fund the government and suspend the debt limit, and they might be talking about it for a while.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has thrown cold water on the idea of abolishing the debt ceiling.

Taxes, Immigration Bigger Tests for Ryan Speakership Than Fiscal Deal
Conservatives concerned about how speaker will handle DACA

Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s leadership will be tested in upcoming debates over taxes and immigration, potentially determining whether he remains the House’s top Republican. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s leadership capabilities are back in the spotlight after September’s fiscal crises were quickly resolved last week without any wins for conservative policies. But that deal is unlikely to define his speakership the way upcoming legislative battles on taxes and immigration will.

Whether the 10-term Wisconsin Republican remains speaker — either by his or the House GOP’s choosing — may depend on his ability to deliver legislation in those areas that can both appease his largely conservative conference and get through the more moderate Senate to President Donald Trump’s desk.

Why Most House Republicans Voted for a Deal They Loathed
Debt haters and defense hawks made up most no votes

Texas Rep. Pete Olson, seen here at a Wednesday press conference, was among the 21 of 25 Texas Republicans to vote for final passage of the Hurricane Harvey relief measure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Most House Republicans griped about the fiscal package they were forced to vote on Friday, but ultimately, a relatively small portion of the conference was willing to vote against it.

A little more than one-third of House Republicans voted against a package that would extend government funding and the debt ceiling for three months, while providing $15 billion in disaster relief aid, primarily to Texas and Louisiana to help with the Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts.

Van Hollen Vouching For All Congressional Interns to Get Paid
Maryland Democrat says it will increase diversity among staffers

Maryland Sen. Chris Van Hollen poses with his 2017 summer interns. (Courtesy Van Hollen’s office)

Interns, is it time to guarantee that you get paid? Sen. Chris Van Hollen thinks so.

The Maryland Democrat authored a provision to expand paid internships as part of the text of the Legislative Branch appropriations bill.

Senate Appropriators Reject Trump Administration’s ‘Apparent Doctrine of Retreat’
Unusually blunt committee report rebukes State Department, OMB

Sen. Lindsey Graham is chairman of the State-Foreign Operations subcommittee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate appropriators are rejecting the Trump administration’s foreign policy, blasting what they call an “apparent doctrine of retreat.”

Appropriations Committee reports are not usually must-reads, but the report to accompany the next fiscal year’s State-Foreign Operations spending package might be the exception. The bill and report go beyond just dismissing the budget request.

Congressional Funding an Issue for the 2020 Census
GAO includes it on ‘high-risk list’ of programs facing peril

In this photo provided by the U.S. Census Bureau, tabulators in Washington record the information from the more than 120,000 enumerators who gathered data for the 1940 U.S. Census. (AP/National Archives and Records Administration File Photo)

The United States Census Bureau is facing a host of challenges with 2020 on the horizon, from budget shortfalls and cost overruns to a shakeup atop the agency — the sudden resignation of Director John H. Thompson in June. There’s apprehension among some groups that President Donald Trump’s hard-line stance on immigration could depress participation, though questions are not asked about immigration status.

It all adds up to one central fear: a census that falls short of an accurate count of the population. The data from that decennial survey is used to map congressional districts, inform policymaking and steer billions of dollars in government resources where they’re needed.

Harvey Aid Bill Creates Dilemma for Texas Republicans
Most oppose move to tack debt and CR to disaster relief

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer struck a rare deal with Republican President Donald Trump on Thursday (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A measure that would provide Hurricane Harvey disaster relief to Texas has politically perplexed members of the Lone Star State’s congressional delegation, some of whom plan to vote against it.

That’s because it includes a debt ceiling extension and only three months’ worth of government funding — a deal struck by President Donald Trump with House and Senate Democratic leaders.

DACA Rhetoric Continues to Soften
Pelosi advised Trump on tweet, while Ryan thinks deal is doable

Since announcing the phaseout of the DACA program, President Donald Trump has said those covered by the program are not under immediate threat of deportation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is providing President Donald Trump advice on how to speak to undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children, after he decided to gradually rescind a Obama-era program that has sheltered roughly 800,000 of them from deportation — and apparently, he is listening.

Pelosi said Trump called her Thursday morning and they discussed the six-month phaseout of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, as well as other issues that she declined to specify.