Education

House Appropriators Ignore Trump’s Proposed Cuts to Arts
NEA, NEH would each receive $145 million

Nevada Rep. Mark Amodei, a member of the Interior-Environment Appropriations Subcommittee, said he was happy to see the arts funding preserved. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Federal arts and humanities programs targeted for elimination by the Trump administration would get a lifeline from House appropriators willing to ignore the president’s proposal and keep them running.

The $31.5 billion fiscal 2018 Interior-Environment spending bill approved by the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday includes $145 million for the National Endowment for the Arts.

Ralph Regula, Avuncular Appropriator from Ohio, Dies at 92
Canton-area congressman unapologetic for pushing bipartisanship

Former Rep. Ralph Regula, a long-time congressman from Northeast Ohio, has died at age 92. (CQ Roll Call File Photo.)

Former Rep. Ralph Regula, a moderate Republican from Ohio known for his deal-cutting acumen, avuncular manner and skills as an appropriator, died July 19. He was 92.

Born in Beach City, Ohio on Dec. 3, 1924, Regula was first elected to Congress in 1972 after stints in the Ohio state House and Senate. Between then and his retirement after the 2008 elections, he embodied a middle-of-the-road Midwestern approach to politics that valued working across the aisle and taking care of the folks back home.

Flake Defends Democratic Opponent From Anti-Muslim Slurs
‘Lots of wonderful people across Arizona,’ GOP senator says

Democratic challenger Deedra Abboud thanked Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake for his “leadership in rejecting behavior that doesn’t reflect our American values.” (Courtesy Deedra 2018)

Sen. Jeff Flake flew quickly to the defense of one of his 2018 Democratic challengers on Twitter late Tuesday in response to anti-Muslim comments posted on her Facebook page.

“Hang in there @deedra2018,” the Arizona Republican encouraged Deedra Abboud, a 45-year-old Phoenix immigration and estate planning lawyer, after seeing an Arizona Republic story pointing out some of the hateful comments. Abboud, a Muslim, launched her campaign to unseat Flake in April.

Senate Health Care Failure Prompts Republican Soul Searching
Onus falls to Mitch McConnell to unite GOP conference

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, seen here Tuesday with Majority Whip John Cornyn, is facing questions over his strategy used in crafting the health care bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell employed an iron fist over the Republican health care effort, keeping top lieutenants in the dark about key decisions and withholding detailed policy information from the conference as a whole until just before it was released publicly.

Now with the seven-year effort to gut the 2010 health care law in tatters, it falls on the Kentucky Republican to deal with the aftermath, and quell concerns about whether he can continue to lead effectively. 

Trump Dined on Rib-Eye, Cobbler With ‘Yes’ Votes as Health Care Bill Crumbled
White House defends dinner as ‘strategy session’ with vote-wranglers

President Donald Trump met Monday night with senators who were already expected to support the since-derailed Republican health care legislation. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

As the Senate Republican health care bill began taking on water, President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence dined on “rosemary-grilled” rib-eye steaks and “farm stand” peach cobbler with seven senators who were expected to support the legislation.

There was Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas, a vocal proponent of the legislation, who was involved in writing it and led the effort to wrangle the necessary votes. The same was true of his fellow GOP leaders present, Sens. John Thune of South Dakota and Roy Blunt of Missouri. All were sure to vote for the bill.

Mitch McConnell’s Plan B on Health Care Appears Dead
Murkowski joins Collins and Capito to oppose proceeding on measure

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowskisays she would vote against the current GOP repeal-only plan, giving opponents the necessary votes to block the measure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not have the votes necessary to pass a bill to repeal portions of the 2010 health care law, the Kentucky Republican’s “Plan B” following the failure of the GOP plan to overhaul the U.S. health insurance markets.

Three Republican senators — Maine’s Susan Collins, West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito and Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski — have all stated their intentions to vote against a procedural motion that would allow McConnell to bring up a 2015 measure that would end the law’s Medicaid expansion and repeal other portions of it starting in two years.

Latest GOP Leadership Health Care Plan Bleeding Support
Some senators have doubts about repeal-only proposal

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell still appears to be short of the votes to get to a health care measure. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Republican leaders continued to push their strategy to repeal the 2010 health care law, leaning on support from the White House even as their rank and file continued to express doubts about such an approach. 

“I regret that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failures of Obamacare will not be successful,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in his opening remarks on the Senate floor Tuesday morning. The Kentucky Republican wants his colleagues to vote soon on a procedural motion to get to the House-passed health care legislation so he can offer an amendment modeled on legislation Congress passed in 2015 to repeal the 2010 law.

At the Races: Democrats Announce for Wide Swath of Congressional Races

Angie Craig, the Democratic Farmer Labor candidate in Minnesota's 2nd District in 2016, announced on Monday she's running again. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats continued to announce their intentions for several congressional races on Monday, which ranged from tossup match-ups to crowded primary races to nearly hopeless cases in heavily Republican states. 

Angie Craig lost last year’s open-seat race in Minnesota’s 2nd District by less than 2 points. On Monday, the Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidate announced she’d try to unseat last year’s rival, freshman GOP Rep. Jason Lewis.

Salt Lake Democrat Announces Challenge to Orrin Hatch
Jenny Wilson faces uphill battle for solidly Republican Senate seat

Utah Sen. Orrin G. Hatch has not made a final decision about running for re-election. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Orrin G. Hatch has yet to make a final decision about whether he is running for re-election, but the Utah Republican now has another Democratic challenger.

Salt Lake County council member Jenny Wilson announced Monday that she is taking on Hatch, who would be running for his eighth Senate term. But Wilson’s bid would be an uphill battle in the deeply Republican Beehive State. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the race as Solidly Republican.

Republicans Seeing Red in Newly Open Nevada Seat
Rosen’s decision to run for Senate opens up 3rd District Seat

Nevada Rep. Jacky Rosen is running for Senate, leaving behind a swing House seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Republicans are largely on defense in 2018, but they see a bright spot in Nevada’s 3rd District. And they believe that spot is even brighter now that the Democratic incumbent is running for Senate.

Rep. Jacky Rosen’s decision to challenge GOP Sen. Dean Heller opens up the Nevada Democrat’s competitive seat. Operatives from both parties expect the House race to once again be one of the most competitive — and expensive — in the country.