Politics

Whip List: Obamacare Rollback Vote Nears Breaking Point
A handful of more GOP opponents would doom measure

House Appropriations Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, left, said he is opposed to the current bill. Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy will need to whip more votes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Enough Republicans appeared on the verge of breaching the dam of support for the House health care overhaul to require frantic lobbying as floor debate got underway Friday.

At least 18 House Republicans had already signaled opposition since the end of a Thursday evening huddle with top Trump administration officials in which Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney delivered an ultimatum, saying President Donald Trump was done negotiating on repealing and replacing the 2010 health care law.

Rep. LoBiondo: Stop Calling My Office Over Health Care Bill
N.J. Republican says his mind is made up, constituents can’t get through for services

Rep. Frank LoBiondo, R-N.J., is asking people to stop calling his office hourly about health care legislation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Frank LoBiondo is asking people to stop calling his office hourly to convince him to vote for the Republican plan to replace the 2010 health care law.

Lawmakers have reported huge increases of calls to their offices — many from outside their districts — both in D.C. and in their districts over the health carebill. And number of Republican members have seen protests in front of their district offices.

Announcing Keystone, Trump Declares ‘New Era of American Energy Policy’
Brash POTUS tells TransCanada boss his lobbyists did not do ‘a damn thing’ to get his OK

Pipes like these will be used to build the Keystone Pipeline in the United States, which President Trump formally approved on Friday. (Photo via WikiCommons)

President Donald Trump announced Friday he has formally approved a Canadian firm’s application to construct the Keystone Pipeline, a project long block by his predecessor and demanded by GOP lawmakers.

“It’s a great day for American jobs, a historic day for North America and energy independence,” Trump said at his desk in the Oval Office. “This announcement is part of a new era of American energy policy that will lower costs for American families, and very significantly reduce our dependence on foreign oil.”

House GOP Passes Closed Rule for Health Care Bill

UNITED STATES — MARCH 23: Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., returns to his office from the House floor in the Capitol on Thursday, March 23, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Continuing a weeks-long process of decisions regarding legislation to partially repeal the 2010 health care law that fly in the face of their repeated calls for “regular order,” House Republicans passed a same-day, closed rule to govern debate on the legislation. 

The 230-194 passage of the rule vote in no way indicates that the legislation itself will pass when the House votes on the bill later Friday. It simply means that opponents of the bill aren’t frustrated enough with the process to vote down the rule.

Former Rep. Owens Recalls Pressure Over Obamacare Vote
Obama tried making the final sell, left strong-arming to others

Former Rep. Bill Owens, D-N.Y., recalled the pressure he faced on his 2010 health care vote. (Bill Clark/Roll Call file photo)

Trump Cites Planned Parenthood to Exert Late Pressure on Conservatives
In need of perhaps 40 votes, president turns to his Twitter bully pulpit

President Donald Trump invoked one of the scourges of conservatives — Planned Parenthood — to try to sway holdouts to vote for the Republican health care bill. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump, hours from perhaps his first legislative defeat, used his favorite bully pulpit — Twitter — to pressure a conservative House group into supporting a GOP-crafted health overhaul bill.

Trump huddled at the White House on Thursday with more than 30 members of the House Freedom Caucus, trying to convince them to back the American Health Care Act. He failed to win over the entire group — and later moderates in the Tuesday Group — and eventually dispatched top aides to the Capitol with a message: It’s time to vote.

Trump Loss on Health Care Could Roil Markets
Investors dialing back expectations president’s agenda will be enacted swiftly

Investors are worried a failure on health care repeal and replace for President Donald Trump could weaken markets. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A potential failure to pass the proposed Republican replacement to the 2010 health care law could result in investors wanting to sell, analysts say.

Before the vote on the bill was postponed, investors were reducing hopes President Donald Trump could swiftly enact the rest of his agenda, Reuters reported.

House GOP Heads Into Health Care Vote ‘Between a Rock and a Hard Place’
Regardless of outcome, Republicans will walk away with losses

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., has been trying to woo undecided Republicans to support the health care bill as a do-or-die vote approaches on Friday. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The outcome of Friday’s House vote to partially repeal and replace the 2010 health care law is not certain, but one thing is: All parties to the Republican negotiations will walk away with some losses.

After a marathon few weeks of debate over the health care measure, President Donald Trump decided he was done dealing and urged the House to vote on the measure and let the chips fall where they may.

Trump’s Health Care Ultimatum Channeling ‘The Art of the Deal’?
But president may not be the only one willing to walk away

President Donald Trump may be taking a page from “The Art of the Deal” with his ultimatum on plans to partially repeal and replace Obamacare. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

By LINDSEY McPHERSON and REMA RAHMAN
CQ Roll Call

A lesson from “The Art of the Deal,” President Donald Trump’s 1987 bestseller, may play out in the House on Friday.

House Heads to Do or Die Vote on Health Care
White House threatens to walk if health bill fails

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, is interviewed in Rayburn Building after he and other members of the HFC met at the White House with President Trump, March 23, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Regardless of whether the votes are sewn up, the House will likely vote Friday on Republican leaders’ plan to partially repeal and replace the 2010 health care law — and President Donald Trump is willing to walk away from the effort if the measure fails in the chamber. 

In a closed-door meeting of the Republican conference attended by Trump’s senior aides, including Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Senior Adviser Steve Bannon, Counselor Kellyanne Conaway and Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, the president’s aides delivered the message that they were done negotiating and the time was now to vote, win or lose.

Despite Lack of Deal, White House Promises Health Bill Passage
Before delay, Trump spokesman: 'It’s going to pass. So that’s it.'

President Donald Trump is confident the GOP health measure will pass, according to his top spokesman, despite negotiations having produced no path there yet. A planned Thursday evening vote has been postponed. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The White House on Thursday laid down several markers on the contents of a still-under-negotiation GOP health overhaul bill, and insisted the measure would eventually pass.

But just when remains unclear. A House leadership aide confirmed to CQ Roll Call that there will be no vote on final passage of the American Health Care Act on Thursday; an evening vote had been planned.

Hunter Under Criminal Investigation Over Campaign Fund Spending
Department of Justice asks Ethics Committee to defer

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., faces charges of using campaign money for personal expenses (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo).

Cummings: Nunes Should be Investigated for Trump Revelations
Ranking Democrat on Oversight Committee says intel chairman ‘scuttled’ investigation

Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., gave President Donald Trump information that should not have been revealed. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Elijah Cummings suggested on Thursday that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes should be investigated for revealing that President Donald Trump’s campaign associates may have been caught up in a surveillance net.

Cummings, D-Md., the ranking member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said Nunes, R-Calif., acted inappropriately when he revealed publicly Wednesday that he had reviewed intelligence reports that had “nothing to do with” the Trump campaign or Russia but did show intelligence agencies had collected information about the campaign.

Plea Deal Reveals Stockman Accused of Stealing $775,000
Former staffer testifies that former congressman scammed two charitable organizations

Court documents in a plea deal for a onetime staffer for former Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, claims the former congressman scammed nearly $800,000 from two charitable organizations. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Testimony in a plea deal from a onetime aide to former Texas Rep. Steve Stockman puts the total of money he is accused of taking from charitable contributions close to $800,000.

Stockman was arrested last week as he was getting on a plane in Houston and charged with campaign funds violations. He was later released on $25,000 bond and forced to surrender his passport.

Rep. Swalwell Mistaken for Actor Jerry O’Connell
Congressman tweets #sorrynotsorry over the confusion

Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., was confused for actor Jerry O'Connell by people on Twitter. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Eric Swalwell was confused for actor Jerry O’Connell during Monday’s House Intelligence Committee hearing.

The high-profile hearing over Russian meddling in the 2016 election attracted a lot of casual viewers who pointed out the resemblance between the actor and the congressman.