Politics

Sanders Jumps Into Columbia Union Debate
Sends letter to students supporting unionization efforts

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, expressed support for efforts by student research and teaching assistants at Columbia University to unionize. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, expressed his support for undergraduate and graduate student teaching research assistants’ efforts to unionize at Columbia University. 

Sanders sent a letter to students saying he hoped they would vote to join the United Auto Workers and recalled meeting with a few students who were pushing to unionize.

Feds Push 17- to 21-Year Sentence for Fattah
Longtime Pennsylvania congressman convicted of racketeering, bribery, fraud, and obstruction

Rep. Chaka Fattah, D-Pennsylvania, received $29,000 in contributions after his indictment. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Long-time Pennsylvania Democratic congressman Chaka Fattah could be sentenced to two decades in prison for a multitude of charges including racketeering, bribery and fraud.

Government lawyers on Monday filed a court memo recommending the “self-serving” Fattah be sentenced to anywhere from 17 to 21 years, according to Philly.com.

Study: Obamacare Repeal Could Leave 30 Million Without Coverage
Urban Institute research looked at using reconciliation to repeal Affordable Care Act

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, has indicated replacing the Affordable Care Act would not come through reconciliation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A new study shows partially repealing the Affordable Care Act through reconciliation would cause almost 30 million people to lose health insurance.

The study from the nonpartisan Urban Institute found that of the 29.8 million who would lose their insurance, 22.5 million would lose coverage because of the loss of premium tax credits, Medicaid expansion and the individual mandate.

Report: Ellison Says He’ll Give up Seat if Elected DNC Chair
The Democratic National Committee will elect new chairman in February

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minnesota, reportedly told a private meeting of union leaders that he would give up his seat to run the Democratic National Committee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison upped his bid for the Democratic National Committee Chairman job last month, promising union leaders he would step down from his congressional seat to focus on the party if elected.

Ellison made the concession during a private meeting with the AFL-CIO, a national federation of labor organizations, according to The Washington Times. 

Charlie Rangel on How America Changed
First elected in 1970, New York Democrat is in his final days in the House

Rep. Charles B. Rangel looks back on his career in his near-empty office on Monday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

This year’s election taught Rep. Charles B. Rangel that America has changed.

“It’s abundantly clear that the standards that Alexander Hamilton expected to find for candidates for president have been lowered,” the New York Democrat said, speaking of President-elect Donald Trump.

Pence Signals Busy First 100 Days, Including More Military Spending
Vice President-elect to fellow Republicans: ‘Buckle up, the vacation’s over’

Vice President-elect Mike Pence walks to a recent meeting on Capitol Hill. On Tuesday evening, he laid out the incoming Trump administration’s plans for its first 100 and 200 days. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Trump administration officials envision a busy first 100 days, when they hope to repeal the 2010 health care law, overhaul Medicaid, and send Congress a bill that would boost military spending, said Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

He laid out the ambitious agenda on Wednesday evening, but in keeping with a main theme of President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign, he did not provide key details about the size and shape of the incoming administration’s policy proposals. The early Trump agenda Pence described is as bold and conservative as it is vague.

Nearly Half of Votes for Advancing IRS Impeachment Came From Outside the Freedom Caucus
Some leadership allies supported moving forward on impeachment resolution

Republican Policy Committee Chairman Luke Messer of Indiana and several allies voted against a motion to refer a resolution to impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen back to the Judiciary Committee. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Nearly half of the 72 Republicans who voted against a motion that effectively blocked a resolution to impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen are a not part of the House Freedom Caucus.

The caucus has led the push to remove Koskinen. 

Obama Sends Messages to Trump on Terrorism, Drone Strategies
POTUS to PEOTUS: Citizens can ‘criticize our president without retribution’

An MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle takes off from Creech Air Force Base. On Tuesday, President Obama defended his counterterrorism strategy, which has relied on the drones. (Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson)

President Barack Obama on Tuesday defended his approach to fighting the Islamic State and al-Qaeda in a speech that appeared to feature several tips for his successor, Donald Trump.

Obama used what was likely his final national security address to press for continuing his policy of avoiding resource-draining U.S. ground operations in the Middle East. He argued the use of armed drones, elite warriors and local troops has decimated al-Qaeda and has begun to substantially weaken the Islamic State. Trump has suggested some major changes to Obama’s strategy, including working with Russia, tightening Muslims’ access to the U.S., and teaming with any country that promises to fight “radical Islam.”

Mattis and West Could Be in Same Chain of Command
Trump’s defense chief pick had said West ‘watched too many Hollywood movies’ after Iraq incident

Former Rep. Allen West, a retired Army lieutenant colonel, met Monday with members of President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team. (Kevin Hagen/Getty Images)

Former Rep. Allen West is eyeing a job that might put him in the same chain of command as Gen. James Mattis, who once chastised West for an incident in Iraq.

West met Monday with Vice President-elect Mike Pence, Gen. Michael Flynn, President-elect Donald Trump’s national security adviser appointee, and K.T. McFarland, who Trump has chosen as deputy national security adviser, McClatchy reported.

Trump: Cancel New Air Force One
President-elect tweets that ‘costs are out of control’

President-elect Donald Trump on the cost of the Air Force One program: “We want Boeing to make a lot of money, but not that much money.” (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

President-elect Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday his intent to cancel a Defense Department contract that would provide new Air Force One planes for future presidents. 

Trump cited the rising cost of the Boeing contract in his tweet, and doubled down on his decision later in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, according to Politico.  

Rouhani Warns Trump Not to Rip Up Iran Deal
Iranian president says the nuclear pact should stand

President-elect Donald Trump called the Iran nuclear agreement a “disaster” and “the worst deal ever negotiated,” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the United States of repercussions should President-elect Donald Trump follow through on his promise to rip up the global nuclear deal.

During a televised speech at the University of Tehran on Tuesday, Rouhani referred to Trump and President Barack Obama explicitly, promising to act if the U.S. pulls out of the nuclear pact or tries to extend the Iran Sanction Act, Reuters reported.

Hudson Proposes National Concealed Carry Bill
North Carolina congressman is member of Trump's Second Amendment Coaliton

Rep. Richard Hudson, R-North Carolina, is a member of President-elect Donald Trump's Second Amendment Coalition. ( Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Richard Hudson, R-North Carolina, says he is preparing legislation that would allow those with concealed carry permits in their state to cross state lines.

According to the Daily Caller, Hudson's legislation would allow people with a state-issued concealed carry license to carry a handgun to any other state that allows concealed carry if the person is not banned from possessing or transporting a firearm by federal law.

Trump Continues ‘Thank You’ Tour With Mattis
Defense secretary nominee to speak at rally

President-elect Donald Trump acknowledges the crowd after speaking at his first post-election rally last week in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Ty Wright/Getty Images)

President Elect Donald Trump will continue his “Thank You” tour on Tuesday in Fayetteville, North Carolina, where he he's expected to introduce his Defense secretary nominee, Gen. James Mattis.

Trump campaigned in Fayetteville on multiple occasions, visiting in both the primary and general elections and winning the state both times.

House Democrats Round Out Leadership Posts
Minority party picks heads of campaign, messaging arms

House Democrats didn’t seem to put the blame for a disappointing Election Day on Democratic Congressional Campaign Chairman Ben Ray Luján, electing him unanimously to a post that had been appointed. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats on Monday chose who will fill out the additional leadership posts created by Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi in an effort to overhaul how the caucus conducts its business.

The Democrats re-elected Rep. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico to chair the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Lujan's position had been appointed and, despite disappointing results on Election Day which saw the party pick up far fewer seats than projected, he ran uncontested and was elected by unanimous consent, according to a source in the room.

Former Louisiana Democrat Poised to Become Anti-Establishment GOP Senator
Republican state Treasurer John Kennedy is favored to win Saturday runoff

Louisiana Treasurer John Kennedy, left, greets a fan at a tailgate party before a football game between Louisiana State University and the University of Alabama in Baton Rouge, La., on Nov. 5. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Louisiana state Treasurer John Kennedy has a distinct advantage over 2016’s other Republican Senate candidates.

As the front-runner in the Louisiana Senate runoff this Saturday — the last Senate election of the year — Kennedy knows who’s going to occupy the White House in January. And that’s freed him up to wrap his arms around President-elect Donald Trump.