Politics

Sanders and Trump Continue to Explore Debate
Sanders campaign manager prods Trump to not 'chicken out'

The idea of a Trump/Sanders debate that began in a joking exchange on late-night television has become a serious prospect, with Donald Trump telling supporters Thursday night that he would "love to" meet Sanders in California in the coming weeks.  

Such an exchange would bypass party tradition and sideline Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton before the decisive California primary on June 7. It would also present a potential ratings bonanza for the hosting television station and few — if any — potential downsides for either Sanders or Trump.  

Homosexuals 'Worthy of Death' Bible Verse Read Before Key Vote
130 Republicans voted against bill with LGBT protections

Rick Allen listens during a House Education and the Workforce Committee hearing. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Republicans at a conference meeting heard a Bible verse that calls for death for homosexuals shortly before the chamber voted Thursday morning to reject a spending bill that included an amendment barring LGBT discrimination.

Whether the freshman member who gave the prayer intended to condemn members of the LGBT community has left Republicans and Democrats deeply divided. What's certain is that the Energy-Water appropriations bill that came to the floor later in the morning was defeated on a resounding 112-305 vote, with a majority of the GOP caucus in opposition.

Regular Disorder: Another House Free-for-All
Failure of energy, water spending measure puts Paul Ryan strategy in focus, changes possible

Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is blaming Democrats for the failure of energy and water spending legislation on the House floor. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Who is to blame when a free-for-all amendment process causes a $37.4 billion spending bill to collapse on the House floor?   

[ House Rejects Spending Bill After Gay Rights Measure Added ]  

Republicans Urge Rubio to Reconsider Senate Run
GOP colleagues say he may be the only one who could hold Florida seat

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is being urged by his fellow Republican colleagues to reconsider his decision to not run for re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is telling reporters he stands by his decision not to seek another term in the Senate , even as some of his fellow Republican senators are going public with their calls for him to stick around.  

The former presidential candidate said Thursday it was "unlikely" anything could sway him to be a late entrant ahead of the Florida Senate primary's June 24 filing deadline.  

As Zika Risk Escalates, Congress Heads Out
Report says 2 million pregnant women in the U.S. could contract the virus

An Aedes aegypti mosquito, seen through a microscope, which transmits the Zika virus. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

As lawmakers leave for their Memorial Day break, a left-leaning think tank says more than 2 million pregnant women — and the children they are carrying — in the United States could be at risk of contracting the Zika virus.  

The Center for American Progress released a new analysis Thursday that estimates “the number of pregnant women potentially at risk in states that are projected to have a moderate or high abundance of the Aedes species mosquitoes that carry the Zika virus.”  

Obama's Dress Down of Trump Rare for a President
Obama uses bully pulpit to denounce his potential successor in an unusual step

President Barack Obama's harsh words for presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump were rare on the world stage. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

Challenging the foreign policy experience of political opponents is nothing new to the presidential race.  

Publicly dressing down a rival candidate in front of the world — as President Barack Obama did Thursday during remarks at the G7 summit in which he characterized presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump as being "ignorant of world affairs" — could very well be another first in the wildly unpredictable 2016 election.  

Susana Martinez in Harsh Trump Spotlight
GOP presidential presumptive nominee says she's not doing her job

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez speaking at the 2012 Republican National Convention. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – These days, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is a study in contrasts.  

The nation’s first Hispanic woman governor, she’s also the first Hispanic chair of the Republican Governors Association.  

Down But Not Out: Grayson Plots Long Shot Comeback
The Florida Democrat has run an underwhelming Senate campaign so far — but he might soon receive help from an unexpected source

Rep. Alan Grayson looks for his ride on the House steps following final votes in January. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Alan Grayson is underfunded, beset by questions about an offshore hedge fund, and only now hiring key members of his campaign.  

Of all of this election season’s Senate candidates, none have had a more difficult start to their race.  

Poll: Clinton Leads Among Middle Income Rust Belt Voters
More think Clinton would fight harder for middle class than Trump

Hillary Clinton leads among middle income voters in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan, according to Bloomberg's polling. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Part of the rise of Donald Trump has been attributed to his tapping into the anxieties of working class voters, but a new poll shows Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton leading among middle class voters in Rust Belt states.  

Forty-six percent of those surveyed in the Bloomberg poll  said they would vote for Clinton while only 39 percent would vote for Trump, the presumptive GOP Republican nominee .  

Trump Hits Magic Number
AP count gives him enough delegates to claim GOP nomination

The Associated Press reported a small number of unbound delegates will support Donald Trump, giving him enough delegates to claim the GOP nomination. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Donald Trump has won the support of enough delegates to claim the Republican presidential nomination outright, according to an unofficial count  reported by the Associated Press.

Trump quietly passed the threshold after some of the party's unbound delegates told the news organization they would support the billionaire businessman at the Cleveland convention in July.

Obama: World Leaders 'Rattled' by Trump's 'Ignorance of World Affairs'
Outgoing president hits presumptive GOP nominee on world stage

World leaders are leery of a potential Donald Trump presidency because they are worried he possesses an “ignorance” about world affairs, President Barack Obama said Thursday.  

"They're rattled by him and for good reason," Obama said in Japan during a G-7 summit. "Because a lot of the proposals that he's made display either ignorance of world affairs or a cavalier attitude or an interest in getting tweets and headlines instead of actually thinking through what is required to keep America safe."  

Trump Splits With Political Director Rick Wiley
Departure of top aide is latest shake-up in campaign

The Trump campaign statement said Rick Wiley was brought on as a consultant for a "short-term basis until the campaign was running full steam," but media reports noted that it was the first time the campaign had referred to him as temporary. (Tom Williams/Roll Call file photo)

Donald Trump continues to shake up his campaign staff as he heads into the general election, with a surprise announcement Wednesday that he is parting with his national political director Rick Wiley.  

The announcement, in a late-night press release, stood in contrast to the fanfare that accompanied Wiley's hiring just six weeks ago, when the former lobbyist was touted as a seasoned political expert who would bring depth and experience to Trump's staff.  

Trump Happy to Debate Sanders — If the Money’s Right
Billionaire requests $10+ million donation to unspecified charity

What started out as a goof on a late night talk show has since evolved into a potential windfall for whatever charitable organization GOP nominee Donald Trump names as the beneficiary of his latest pitch to debate-hungry White House hopeful Bernard Sanders.  

During a speech in Bismarck, N.D., Trump again reversed course on the possibility of facing off against the dark horse Democratic candidate. (Starts at 1:18:32 in above video.)  

Trump Admits He Sometimes Used Aliases
But likely GOP nominee insists to Jimmy Kimmel he never posed as spokesman

Donald Trump admitted Wednesday that he had sometimes posed as other people during business deals, but he continued to deny reports that he had frequently pretended to be his own spokesman.  

Trump said on "Jimmy Kimmel Live! " that he had often used aliases in real estate transactions to avoid paying a premium for the Trump name. But that distinctly Trump-like voice in a recorded phone extolling the Manhattan mogul's wealth and sexual prowess to a reporter? Not him, he said.

Pro-Abortion Rights Group Launches Supreme Court Ads
NARAL Pro-Choice America targets GOP senators in four states

The new ads by a pro-abortion rights group reiterate the Democrats' "Do your job" mantra. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A pro-abortion rights group is alleging that Republican senators are blocking the president's Supreme Court nominee over abortion, and is targeting four of them in new ads.   

NARAL Pro-Choice America plans to devote $100,000 to radio and digital ads in four states criticizing Republican senators for not considering Judge Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama's nominee to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.