Politics

Obama Doubts Trump Can Govern Via Twitter, Admits Some Missteps
Outgoing president: Bitter partisanship means ‘we’re weakening ourselves’

President Obama, Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., Rep. Joe Crowley, D-N.Y., Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., arrive in the Capitol Visitor Center on Jan. 4 for the meeting of House and Senate Democrats to discuss Obamacare. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

President Barack Obama used his final national television interview to express doubts that Donald Trump will be able to effectively govern by firing off tweets and offered some advice about the president-elect’s feud with the intelligence community.

In a lengthy interview that aired Sunday evening on CBS’s “60 Minutes” news program, Obama also acknowledged some mistakes — a rarity for the outgoing chief executive. Among them were missteps he made in dealing with Congress.

Mixed Bag of Republicans Vote Against Obamacare Repeal Vehicle
GOP defectors cite deficit, lack of replacement

Dent voted against the budget resolution because of concerns about the GOP rushing to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans on Friday passed a bare-bones fiscal 2017 budget resolution with few intraparty defections, as most GOP members saw the unbalanced and long-delayed spending plan as a necessary means to an end of repealing the 2010 health care law.

The nine Republicans who voted against the measure raised concerns about either the budget not balancing, a key priority for fiscal conservatives, or the aggressive timeline of repealing the Affordable Care Act, given that the GOP has yet to present a replacement plan. The final vote was 227-198. 

Ep. 36: Spooked by Russia
The Week Ahead

CQ Roll Call’s intelligence reporter Ryan Lucas separates fact from fiction on all the Russia-related reports that have thrown the nation’s capital into a tizzy. 

John Lewis to Skip Trump Inauguration
Says Trump is not a legitimate president

Rep. John Lewis, seen testifying at the confirmation hearing of Jeff Sessions for attorney general, is boycotting Trump’s inauguration. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis will not attend President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration, charging that Trump’s presidency is illegitimate. 

“I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president,” the Georgia Democrat told NBC’s “Meet the Press with Chuck Todd” in an interview to air this Sunday. “I think the Russians participated in helping this man get elected. And they helped destroy the candidacy of Hillary Clinton.”

Photos of the Week: Confirmation Hearing Frenzy on Capitol Hill
The week of Jan. 9 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, and Chairman Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, prepare for Sessions’ Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing in Russell Building’s Kennedy Caucus Room on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A total of seven confirmation hearings for President-elect Donald Trump’s Cabinet picks kicked off on the Hill this week. Meanwhile, a back-and-forth erupted between the parties over a student painting being taken down from the Cannon House Office Building.

Noem Replacement Candidate Raises $100,000
Comes as Noem makes a run for Governor

Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., announced in November that she would run for governor in 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former South Dakota Public Utilities Commissioner Dusty Johnson said he raised $104,000 in the final weeks of 2016 for his campaign to succeed Rep. Kristi Noem.

Johnson raised the money in the final weeks of December after Noem announced she would run for governor, the Argus Leader reported.

And Democrats Said: Let There Be Vice Ranking Members
House caucus rules amended to allow for new leadership posts

Massachusetts Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy III was one of the Democrats who came up with the idea of committee vice ranking members. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats on Friday adopted an amendment to their internal caucus rules allowing for the creation of vice ranking members for standing committees. 

The introduction of additional committee leadership posts comes in response to concerns raised following the Democrats’ poor showing in last year’s elections that there were not enough opportunities for younger members to contribute to the caucus at the committee and leadership levels.

Pelosi Calls for Investigation Into Trump's Ties to Russia
’This is an issue that is great deal of interest to the American people,’ House minority leader says

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., wants an investigation in to President-elect Donald Trump’s ties with Russia. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on Friday called for an investigation into any ties Donald Trump has with Russia and whether the Kremlin has any compromising information on the president elect. 

“We want our agencies of government to investigate what those connections are and hopefully resolve it in our favor,” the California Democrat told reporters at her weekly news briefing. 

Nevada Democrats Want McCarran Statue Removed From Capitol
Harry Reid wanted his name removed from Las Vegas airport

Rep. Jacky Rosen is one of three Democratic members of Congress who wants to see former Sen. Patrick McCarran's statue removed from Statuary Hall in the Senate (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Three Nevada Democratic House members want the statue of former Nevada Sen. Patrick McCarran's removed from the Capitol’s Statuary Hall.

Reps. Dina Titus, Ruben Kihuen and Jacky Rosen sent a letter to Nevada's Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval criticizing McCarran's legacy of xenophobia and antisemitism, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Texas Republican Compares Mexican Singers to Russian Interference
Says actors and singers who performed at Clinton rally tried to influence election, too

Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas, wants “the whole story.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas, said the Mexican singers and soap opera stars who appeared at Hillary Clinton events influenced the election as much as Russian hackers did.

“Those are foreign actors, foreign people, influencing the vote in Nevada. You don’t hear the Democrats screaming and saying one word about that,” Conaway told the Dallas Morning News.

House GOP Group Launches Digital Campaign for Health Care Plan
American Action Network will target 28 House districts

American Action Network is running digital ads about the House Republicans’ health care law replacement efforts in Ohio’s 4th District, held by former Freedom Caucus Chairman Jim Jordan. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

An outside group affiliated with House GOP leadership is ramping up its advertising campaign for a Republican alternative to the 2010 health care law, running $400,000 in digital ads across 28 congressional districts. 

American Action Network, a conservative nonprofit advocacy organization, is launching its first digital campaign of the year Friday, when the House is expected to vote on the budget resolution that would begin the process of repealing President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. 

Democratic Senate Incumbents Could Withstand Rust Belt Shift
An early look at the re-election prospects of 4 senators from Trump states

Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown will be up for re-election in 2018 in Ohio, where Republicans Donald Trump and Sen. Rob Portman won handily last year. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In the final stretch of the 2016 campaign, Paul Maslin could sense that former Sen. Russ Feingold was in trouble, as the Wisconsin Democrat tried to win back his Senate seat from Republican incumbent Sen. Ron Johnson.

“I could feel Johnson found a message groove and Russ was doing sort of a victory lap,” said Maslin, a Democratic consultant in the Badger State, who was doing work for the independent expenditure arm of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Ryan Calls Trump Lobbying Ban Proposal ’Dangerous’
Speaker says ’unseen circumstances’ come with lengthening the current ban

Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., does not support extending the current lobbying ban on members of Congress, which is part of President-elect Donald Trump’s ethics overhaul plan. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Thursday that a proposal to extend the one-year lobbying ban for retired members of Congress to five years — part of President-elect Donald Trump’s series of ethics reforms — is “dangerous.” 

The Wisconsin Republican said during a CNN town hall that he agrees with the intent of preventing members of Congress from leaving the institution and immediately going into the private sector just to get rich. However, he noted there are other “unseen circumstances” that come with the lobbying ban. 

White House Sees McAuliffe Playing Big Role for Dems in Post-Obama Era
Earnest floats notion next singular party leader is, for now, an unknown to most

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia at the Democratic National Convention last July. President Barack Obama sees him as a key part of the Democratic Party leadership team come Jan. 20. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Barack Obama expects the Democratic Party to transition to leadership by committee when he leaves office next Friday, and his top spokesman expects Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe will play a major role. 

Asked Thursday to whom Obama will articulate concerns or offer advice, Press Secretary Josh Earnest pointed to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and the new Senate Minority Leader, Charles E. Schumer of New York, then added McAuliffe to the list.

Progressives Outraged Over Booker, Democrats’ Vote on Prescription Drugs From Canada
12 Republicans voted for amendment to GOP budget resolution that begins dismantling of Obamacare

Sen. Cory Booker defended his vote on the amendment, saying it “didn’t adequately make sure foreign drugs meet American safety standards.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Progressives in the Democratic Party are outraged after 13 Democrats voted against an amendment that would have allowed Americans to buy cheaper prescription drugs from Canada, saying it’s a sign that Big Pharma has too much power in the party. 

The amendment was unlikely to pass, but critics say that’s why it should have been a safe way for Democrats to show their support for combating high drug prices.