2020

Eager for Lame Duck Win, Trump Backs Prison Reform Bill
Members of both parties, Jared Kushner negotiated plan for months

President Donald Trump has thrown his weight behind a measure to reform the prison system that has bipartisan support. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Eager for a legislative win in the lame duck session, President Donald Trump on Wednesday endorsed legislation that would alter prison and sentencing policies as he tries to show he can push bipartisan bills through Congress.

Trump had been reluctant for months about whether to endorse the bill, which would include criminal justice changes backed by members of both parties in the House and Senate. His son-in-law and White House adviser, Jared Kushner, has been working with members of both parties to craft the measure and scored a big win with the presidential endorsement.

Todd Young Elected to Lead Senate Republican Campaign Arm
Indiana Republican has a challenging cycle ahead of him

Sen. Todd Young, center, will be succeeding Sen. Cory Gardner as the NRSC chairman. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Todd Young was elected on Wednesday to be the next chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, a much more difficult cycle for incumbent protection on the Republican side.

The Republican from Indiana was the only candidate for the post, which is being vacated by Republican Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado. Gardner is himself in what is expected to be among the most hotly contested races of the 2020 cycle.

Possible Trump-Macron Split Fuels European Power Vacuum
Bromance burned bright at first, but presidents spent weekend trading barbs

President Donald Trump, right, and French President Emmanuel Macron in April at the White House, when the two had a closer relationship than was in evidence in recent days. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Donald Trump is pushing away one of his few close allies, French President Emmanuel Macron, as experts warn of an emerging European power vacuum and some GOP lawmakers defend the U.S. president’s latest brash move.

The two presidents have little in common but quickly became unlikely allies. Trump is a businessman and former reality television star. Macron was a philosophy major who became a finance and economic wonk. A bromance developed, and Trump feted Macron during an official visit that included a private dinner at George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate and an elegant state dinner at the White House.

Trump Predicts ‘Deal-Making,’ Many Fights Ahead With Democrats
First up, both sides face border funding test in lame-duck session

President Donald Trump talks to reporters Wednesday, the day after the midterm elections. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump appears ready to make some deals — except when he’s threatening Democrats with “warlike” tactics.

Despite losing the House and several governorships in states that could be key for Trump’s 2020 re-election prospects, the president used a press conference last week to send widely divergent messages to lawmakers about just how much he wants to get done in the lame-duck remainder of the 115th Congress and after the 116th is seated in early January.

Richard Ojeda, West Virginia’s Trump-voting Democrat, Announces Presidential Bid
Retired army major lost his bid for 3rd District last week

State Sen. Richard Ojeda lost his bid for the 3rd District by nearly 13 points last week. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

On the heels of his losing congressional bid in West Virginia, state Sen. Richard Ojeda has filed to run for the Democratic nomination for president.

Speaking to his supporters via Facebook Live from the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on Monday afternoon, Ojeda laid out an anti-corruption platform and promised to fight for the working class.

Cheri Bustos Drops Out of Assistant Leader Race to Run for DCCC Chair
Illinois Democrat’s decision avoids face-off with current DCCC chairman Luján

Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., is dropping out of the assistant Democratic leader race to run for Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chair. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Illinois Rep. Cheri Bustos announced Friday that she was dropping out of the race for the next assistant Democratic leader and would instead seek to chair the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. 

“One of the greatest challenges we face in the next Congress is defending and expanding our majority,” Bustos said.

Donald Trump’s Trans-Atlantic Tweetstorm on Air Force One
President said he was focused on ‘the world.’ He spent hours attacking domestic foes

President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump step off Air Force One on Oct. 30 in Pittsburgh. On Friday, the president fired off a number of tweets from the plane while traveling with his wife to Paris. (Shealah Craighead/White House via Flickr)

President Donald Trump assured reporters as he left the White House Friday morning for Paris he was “thinking about the world.” Only, he wasn’t.

The president and first lady Melania Trump boarded Marine One just before 9:30 a.m. and lifted off to link up with Air Force One a few minutes later. By 10 a.m., the executive jet was wheels up for a diplomatic trip to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

Flake Interested in Own Future, Not Protecting Mueller Probe, Trump Says
Arizona Republican has not ruled out challenging Trump in 2020

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., was the target of more harsh words from President Trump on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Donald Trump lashed out Friday at retiring GOP Sen. Jeff Flake, accusing the Arizona Republican of putting his own possible presidential ambitions ahead of actually protecting special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.

Flake said Thursday that he and Democratic Sen. Chris Coons would try to call up legislation designed to protect Mueller when the Senate returns for the lame-duck session next week. In a tweet about the bipartisan bill, Flake said, “After the firing of The AG, it is more important than ever to protect the Special Counsel.”

Trump Claims No Mueller Probe Chats With Acting AG Whitaker
Sessions replacement has blasted Russia probe in the past

President Donald Trump says he has never discussed the Russia investigation with Acting Attorny General Matthew Whitaker. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Friday claimed he has never discussed special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation into Russia’s 2016 election meddling and possible coordination with his campaign with acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker.

“I didn’t speak to Matt Whitaker” about the ongoing Justice Department probe before naming him to the post, Trump said. 

The ‘Open-Book’ President Lays Out His ‘War-Like Posture’ Plan
‘Them being in the majority, I’m just going to blame them,’ Trump says of Dems

President Donald Trump walks toward Marine One from the Oval Office on Oct. 12. He sent several clear signals about his re-election messaging the day after the midterm elections cost his part the House. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

ANALYSIS | “I think I am an open book,” President Donald Trump said Wednesday. He made good on that pledge during a roller coaster press conference when he made clear he is spoiling for a “war” with House Democrats and the media.

Trump fired a shot across the bow, warning Democrats if they launch investigations into him, he will immediately go into a “war-like posture” that will ensure “nothing is done” in Washington. He sparred with reporters, barking at several to sit down while calling a CNN journalist a disgrace. He talked over reporters trying to ask questions and called an African-American PBS reporter’s question “racist.”