2017

George H.W. Bush, 41st President of the United States, Dies at 94
Last World War II veteran to serve as POTUS dies seven months after wife Barbara Bush

Barbara Bush and George H.W. Bush at the 1992 Republican National Convention.  (Laura Patterson/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former President George H.W. Bush, the 41st president and self-effacing patriarch of one of America’s premier political families, which has included two occupants of the White House, a senator and a governor, died Friday, at age 94.

As president, Bush led an international coalition to victory in the first Persian Gulf war in 1990-91, only to lose his bid for re-election the following year to Democrat Bill Clinton primarily because of a prolonged recession and Bush’s perceived inability to cure it.

Beneath the Politics, House GOP Quietly Touts Legitimate Oversight of FBI, DOJ
Judiciary and Oversight Committees’ probe of potential bias at DOJ, FBI has turned into political firestorm

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing in Rayburn Building on the Justice Department’s investigation of Russia’s interference in the 2016 election on Dec. 13, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The high-profile joint House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform probe into bias at the top echelons of the FBI and Department of Justice during 2016 has been marked by pitched partisanship that has distracted from the substance of lawmakers’ oversight goals — at least publicly.

Some of the quieter GOP voices on the panel believe they can tout legitimate pieces of oversight success despite that partisan cloud.

Trump Keeps Rosenstein Despite Reported Recording, Removal Talk
‘I have a very good relationship’ with deputy AG, president says

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves the Capitol on May 19, 2017. He is still in his job despite reported remarks about secretly recording President Trump with the goal of removing him from office. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rod Rosenstein, despite reports he discussed secretly taping President Donald Trump with the goal or removing him from office, is still the deputy attorney general after the two men spoke aboard Air Force One.

The senior Justice Department official joined Trump on the executive jet on the way to Orlando, where the president is addressing law enforcement officials. White House spokesman Hogan Gidley told reporters traveling with Trump that the duo talked for 30 minutes during the flight to Florida.

From Adams to Pence: Long History of Memorable VP Tie-Breakers
If Kavanaugh vote is deadlocked, vice president would put him on Supreme Court

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh (left) walks up the Capitol's Senate steps with Vice President Mike Pence for a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on July 10. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump face a high-stakes Saturday showdown with a handful of key senators that will decide whether the Supreme Court tilts to the right — perhaps for decades to come. But it might fall to Vice President Mike Pence to put him on the highest bench in the land.

After the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh — who has faced multiple sexual assault allegations and criticism for his angry rebuttal that included sharp criticism of Senate Democrats — cleared a procedural hurdle Friday morning, McConnell and Trump needed to secure 50 GOP votes.

Trump: Jamie Dimon Doesn’t Have the ‘Smarts’ to Be President, PR Hurricane Death Toll Inflated
President contends Democrats inflated Puerto Rico numbers

President Donald Trump walks from the South Lawn to Marine One on his way to Joint Base Andrews on July 27. (Photo By Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 11:43 a.m. | President Donald Trump warned those in Hurricane Florence’s path of the storm’s power, but then returned to attacking his foes and painting himself as the victim of an internal FBI scheme to damage him politically. And he essentially accused Puerto Rican officials and Democrats of lying about how many people died there after Hurricane Maria pummeled the island.

“That doesn’t make sense to me. I don’t know why he’d say that,” Florida GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo told reporters when informed of the president’s tweet saying the death toll from Hurricane Maria was a ploy by Democrats.

Trump Again Defends Puerto Rico Response as Hurricane Florence Nears
President blames ‘totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan’ for problems after Maria

Hurricane Florence rainfall predictions as the storm heads for the Carolinas and Virginia, according to the National Hurricane Center. (NOAA)

President Donald Trump on Wednesday warned Hurricane Florence could prove “bigger than anticipated” as it barrels toward the Carolinas and sharply blamed a Puerto Rican mayor for the widely panned federal response to a storm there last year.

FEMA Administrator Brock Long on Tuesday warned Florence has “an opportunity of being a very devastating storm,” adding “the power is going to be off for weeks.” He predicts the storm will be a Category 3 or Category 4 hurricane when it makes landfall this weekend. And Trump told reporters after being briefed by Long and Homeland Security officials that Florence will be “tremendously big and tremendously wet” with “tremendous amounts of water.”

Meadows: New Strzok Texts Show ‘Culture of Media Leaking’ at FBI, DOJ
Texts offer behind-the-scenes look at how FBI officials knew of media leak to WaPo, others

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., wrote a letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein decrying a “culture of media leaking” at the FBI and DOJ. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Mark Meadows has identified what he called a “systemic culture of media leaking by high-ranking officials” at the nation’s top law enforcement agencies, he wrote in a letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Monday.

The allegations that higher-ups at the FBI and Justice Department stem from yet more unmasked text exchanges between two officials Meadows and other House Republicans have criticized for months as they try to root out political bias at the agencies: the FBI’s recently fired Peter Strzok and DOJ lawyer Lisa Page, his former alleged mistress.

Trump Calls Anonymous Official Who Penned Critical Op-Ed ‘Gutless’
New York Times essay: Senior officials considered 25th Amendment removal of president

President Donald Trump lashed out at a senior administration official who sharply criticized him in an anonymous New York Times op-ed. His top spokeswoman called it a case of the “liberal media’s concerted effort to discredit the president.” (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump slammed an anonymous critical New York Times op-ed penned by a senior administration official as “gutless.”

The piece alleges that a cadre of White House aides and senior officials within every federal department and agency are working to stifle Trump’s worst instincts and policy whims. It even alleges there were whispers early in his presidency about invoking the 25th Amendment, under which a vice president and 13 of the 24 Cabinet officials can depose a chief executive, to remove Trump from office.

Trade Talks With Canada Stall, but White House Hopeful of Deal
‘The Senate will make it’s own decisions,’ a senior administration official said

U.S. President Donald Trump departs the White House July 31, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

The Trump administration’s trade talks with Canada stalled Friday without a pact, but the White House told Congress it still intends to include America’s northern neighbor in a preliminary U.S.-Mexico deal. Lawmakers have been firm the White House should only send them a three-way agreement.

President Donald Trump intends to finalize a deal with Mexico “and Canada, if it is willing” in 90 days, a senior administration official said Friday. “With respect to Canada … we believe we made progress. We continue to work toward an agreement.”

White House Counsel Don McGahn to Leave Post
Sen. Chuck Grassley warns Trump amid ongoing Mueller investigation

White House Counsel Don McGahn heads into a meeting with Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill August 23, 2018. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Updated 3:18 p.m. | White House Counsel Don McGahn will leave his post this fall following the expected confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, President Donald Trump announced Wednesday.

The president used a tweet the make the announcement, which comes amid Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation into Russian election meddling and possible illegal coordination with Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.