Eric Garcia

Aide to Bob Brady Faces More Charges
Ken Smukler is accused of hiding donations to former congresswoman’s campaign

An aide to Pennsylvania Rep. Robert A. Brady, already facing charges from Brady’s 2012 campaign, is facing additional charges of obstructing a federal investigation of former Rep. Marjorie Margolies.

Ken Smukler was charged last year in relation to a scheme to pay off one of Brady’s Democratic primary opponents in 2012.

Prosecutor: Stockman Ran a ‘Massive Scam’
Defense emphasizes Stockman’s humble living and says he just lost track of finances

Former Texas Rep. Steve Stockman was accused by a federal prosecutor in his corruption trial of running a “massive scam” in which he funneled charitable donations for his campaign and personal use and lied about it.

The former Texas Republican congressman’s trial began on Monday.

Ferguson’s Primary Challenger Once Tried to Work for Him
Republican Philip Singleton sought job in Ferguson’s office before deciding to run against him

Georgia Rep. Drew Ferguson’s Republican primary challenger is trying to take his job, but at one point he sought one in his office.

Philip Singleton met with Ferguson in July 2017 to discuss employment opportunities, a month after Singleton filed as a candidate, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Student Suspended After Call to Amodei’s Office
Came during the nationwide student walkout over gun violence last week

A student from Reno is saying his civil liberties were violated after he was suspended from his high school after calling Nevada Rep. Mark Amodei.

Noah Christiansen called his congressman’s office last week while students across the country walked out of classes in support of gun control, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Democratic Campaigns Start Unionizing in #MeToo Era
Move could protect against sexual harassment and lead to better employee benefits

When Randy Bryce’s campaign for Wisconsin’s 1st District was only two staffers deep, one of them told him he was thinking of forming a union.

“There wasn’t really thought involved,” said the Democrat challenging Speaker Paul D. Ryan about allowing his campaign staff to unionize.

Corruption Trial Begins for Former Rep. Steve Stockman
Prosecutors call the allegations against former Republican congressman a ‘white-collar crime spree’

The corruption trial for former Texas Rep. Steve Stockman, accused of using charitable donations for campaign and personal use, is set to begin on Monday.

Prosecutors in the case have called the allegations against the former Republican congressman a “white-collar crime spree,” the Houston Chronicle reported.

Suozzi Suggests Using the ‘Second Amendment’ on Trump
Democratic rep’s campaign forwarded a quote from Thomas Jefferson to ‘take arms’ against rulers

Democratic Rep. Tom Suozzi suggested at a town hall that President Donald Trump’s opponents could take up arms against the president.

The New York Democrat was speaking at an event in Huntington, New York, last week and said it was important to put pressure on the president, in a video obtained by the New York Post.

Erik Prince to Hold Fundraiser for Rohrabacher
Comes as Trump associate faces scrutiny in Russia investigation

Blackwater founder Erik Prince will host a fundraiser for California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher as the Republican faces a tough re-election.

The fundraiser will take place at Prince’s home in Middleburg, Virginia, according to CNN. Prince, a former Navy SEAL who is Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ brother, interned in Rohrabacher’s Capitol Hill office in 1990.

Congress Warns North Korea — and Trump — on Nuke Talks
Messer says Trump deserves a Nobel Prize

Members of Congress were cautious in response to the news that President Donald Trump will meet with Kim Jong Un to discuss North Korea’s nuclear program.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, a hawkish Republican who went from being a major Trump critic to ally, said Trump’s “strong stand” against the regime gives the United States the best opportunity for peace.

Pelosi Mum on Whether Kihuen Should Seek Re-election
Nevada congressman announced he wouldn’t seek re-election after sexual harassment allegations

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was mum on whether Nevada Rep. Ruben Kihuen should seek re-election after saying he would not after being accused of sexual harassment.

“When he makes a decision, I’ll give you a reaction to it,” the Democratic leader said at a press conference Thursday.

Former Bush Lawyer and Trump Critic Exploring Minnesota Senate Run
Richard Painter says he’s not sure if he will run as a Democrat, Republican or independent

Former Bush administration ethics lawyer Richard Painter is considering a run for Senate in Minnesota against Sen. Tina Smith.

Painter said at a news conference in front of the state Capitol that he was forming an exploratory committee to examine a run, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported.

Bipartisan Bill Seeks to End Political ‘Burrowing’
Legislation would create cooling off period to prevent appointees from moving into career positions

A bipartisan duo’s legislation to prevent political appointees from receiving career positions in the federal government moves to the Senate after passing the House on Tuesday.

Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu of California and Republican Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado introduced The Political Appointee Burrowing Prevention Act, which was approved by a voice vote.

Titus Asks Justice Department to Preserve Online Gambling
Obama administration ruled in 2011 that online gambling was not illegal in states that allow it

Nevada Rep. Dina Titus is asking the Justice Department to keep online gambling legal.

In a letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, Titus asked him not to reverse a 2011 ruling by the Obama administration that online gambling within states did not violate the Wire Act, which outlaws illegal gambling, The Associated Press reported.

Katko Wants Federal Commission on Mass Shootings and Guns
Panel would be appointed by House and Senate leadership and president

Republican Rep. John Katko said he plans to introduce a bill to establish a presidential commission on mass shootings and gun laws.

Katko, who represents upstate New York’s 24th District, told the Syracuse Post-Standard that members would be appointed by Republican and Democratic leadership in both houses of Congress and by President Donald Trump.

Campaign Legal Center Files Complaint Against Pro-Doug Jones Super PAC
Group says ‘secrecy scheme’ cooked up by Highway 31 threatens to create a new disclosure loophole

The watchdog group accused Highway 31 of engaging in a “secrecy scheme to spend $4.2 million in the race” to support the Democratic candidate, reported.

Part of the complaint is that Highway 31, which is headquartered in Birmingham, said it spent $1.15 million in Alabama’s special election.

The Slow Breakup Between Democrats and the NRA
Group’s all-or-nothing approach to gun rights is forcing some to abandon ties

Just eight years ago, the National Rifle Association dished out $372,000 in campaign contributions to a record 66 Democratic incumbents.

By the 2016 cycle, that number had dwindled to four.

Bredesen Says He and Corker Discussed Senate Race
Corker’s retirement led to former Democratic governor’s candidacy

Democratic Senate candidate and former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen said he and outgoing Republican Sen. Bob Corkerhad “numerous” conversations about the race.

Bredesen’s candidacy has cleared the Democratic field after Corker announced in September he would not seek re-election after two terms.

Lipinski Warns About ‘Tea Party of the Left’
Illinois Democrat has been criticized for positions on social issues, faces primary challenge from left

As he faces a primary challenge for his positions on social issues in Illinois’ 3rd District, Rep. Dan Lipinski warned Democrats risked creating a left-wing tea party.

In an interview on 720 WGN AM, Lipinski said there is a “battle” for the meaning of the Democratic Party, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Rooney Says Hicks Was Set up with a ‘Bulls--- Question’
White House communications director announced her departure after admitting she told ‘white lies’ for Trump

Rep. Tom Rooney said that outgoing White House Communications Director Hope Hicks was set up by a “bulls---” question from a Democratic member of the House Intelligence Committee.

The Florida Republican told CBS News it was that  question that led to Hicks saying she told “white lies” on behalf of the White House, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Brat’s Office Removes ‘Likes’ of Controversial Parkland Tweets
Tweets speculated that Parkland shooting survivors appearing on cable shows were paid actors

After public criticism for “liking” multiple controversial tweets, Virginia Rep. Dave Brat’s staff removed the likes from his campaign Twitter account.

Brat, a member of the conservative Freedom Caucus, had come under criticism after his account liked tweets implying that one of the students who survived the shooting in Parkland, Florida, was an actor, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.