Chris Coons

Senate Democrats Likely to Oppose Push to Block Health Insurance Mandate
Desire to keep contentious amendments off spending bills might prevail

Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., chairs the Appropriations subcommittee where any amendment on the D.C. health insurance mandate might come up first in the Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A Republican amendment to a House-passed spending package that would ban the District of Columbia from implementing an individual health insurance coverage requirement is unlikely to gain steam as the Senate prepares to take up a similar measure.

It’s not clear yet if any Senate Republicans will introduce a similar amendment when the Financial Services and Interior-Environment package reaches the Senate floor, but it would likely face fierce minority opposition in the chamber, where Democrats are defending the 2010 health care law at every opportunity.

Democrats Press GOP for Quick Legislative Response on Russia
Several measures in both chambers designed to push back on Putin

Protesters participate in a candlelight vigil in front of the White House Wednesday to protest President Donald Trump in the wake of his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Congress could consider several bills in response to concerns about Russian meddling in the upcoming election. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

House and Senate Democrats are pressuring their Republican colleagues to bring to the floor legislation introduced in response to President Donald Trump’s comments — and revisions to those comments — this week on Russian interference in U.S. elections.

Democratic House leaders released a bipartisan package that includes 17 previously introduced bills that would further restrict the White House’s foreign policy and economic options when it comes to Moscow.

Foreign Relations Panel Shows Bipartisan Scorn for Administration Trade Agenda
Tough questions from both sides of aisle, liberal, conservative witnesses

Josh Bolten, right, CEO of the Business Roundtable, talks with Chairman Bob Corker, R-Tenn., after a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing in Dirksen Building titled "Tariffs: Implications for U.S. Foreign Policy and the International Economy," on July 12, 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker was candid with the State Department witness that appeared before his committee at a hearing on Trump administration trade policy Thursday morning.

“You are going to be cannon fodder this morning, and I don’t think you are really prepared to defend the policies in an appropriate manner,” the Tennessee Republican told Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs Manisha Singh.

Analysis: Donald Trump’s ‘Schmucks’ and KGB Summer Sojourn
‘Do you know what? Putin’s fine,’ president declares amid Dems’ concerns

President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in July 2017. They will meet again on July 16. (Evan Vucci/AP file photo)

President Donald Trump’s European summer swing will be bookended by summits that form a microcosm of his contrarian presidency. Some worry his coming talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin could alter the post-World War II global order.

Trump’s seven-day trip will start with NATO allies he believes are making “schmucks” of Americans and will end with Putin, whom Trump believes is “fine” despite agreement among his intelligence agencies that Russia tried to upend U.S. politics with a disinformation campaign in 2016. Democratic lawmakers are warning that Trump’s unique foreign policy philosophy — a mix of pre-World War I realism and modern-day mercantilism — could lead him to further anger allies and give in to a Russian strongman.

Analysis: Top Brow-Furrowing Moments From Trump’s Tax Bash
‘The economy is indeed doing well,’ president says before addressing newsroom murders

President Donald Trump on Friday asked invited guests if they were aware that the U.S. economy is the world’s largest. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

This might be remembered as the week President Donald Trump, back in campaign mode, got his sharp-tongued rhetorical groove back. And he kept it up Friday, even while making his first public remarks about a shooting at a Maryland newsroom that occurred roughly 30 miles from the White House and left five dead.

The president came to the White House’s East Room for a long-scheduled event on the six-month-anniversary of a GOP tax law he signed in late December with a prepared statement about the Annapolis shooting at the Capital Gazette office.

Outside Groups, Democrats Form Ranks in Supreme Court Fight
‘This will not happen without a fight,’ Sen. Cory Booker says

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker called for the Senate Judiciary Committee to not consider a Supreme Court pick by the president until the Russia investigation is complete. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Less than 24 hours after Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced his retirement from the Supreme Court, liberal advocacy group Demand Justice rallied in front of the court building Thursday with a string of Democratic lawmakers with a unified message: We will fight.

A professionally printed “Ditch the List” sign featuring President Donald Trump’s face hung on the podium, an expression of dissatisfaction with his list of 25 solidly conservative potential picks. Numerous Democratic senators also seized on the phrase as a hashtag on Twitter.

Kennedy Role on Court Meant Big Imprint on Nation
From gay rights to abortion, he was often the deciding vote on the most contentious issues

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, center, talks with Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., right, and ranking member Arlen Specter, R-Pa., after a hearing on judicial security and independence in February 2007. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, 81, became known as the swing vote during the final decade of his 30 years on the Supreme Court — a description he professed to dislike.

It’s not that his ideology or positions on legal issues moved back and forth. But he would frequently cast the deciding vote on the most contentious cases.

Trump Exaggerates Immigration Judge Proposals
DOJ, lawmakers have proposed fewer judges at the border than president asserts

President Donald Trump speaks at a Cabinet meeting at the White House on Thursday. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump’s tweet Monday opposing “hiring manythousands” of immigration judges for migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border goes far beyond the number of judges lawmakers want to add to speed up the nation’s deportation system, and is also significantly more than what the Justice Department says it needs.

The DOJ has made the hiring of additional judges a key component of its immigration enforcement agenda, despite Trump’s assertion in his tweet that it’s “not the way to go.” A department official told lawmakers last November it will take around 700 immigration judges total to make a dent in a massive backlog of cases in immigration court.

‘Zero Tolerance’ Remains in Effect as First Lady Visits Migrant Kids
POTUS says one thing about prosecutions, newspaper another, DOJ something else

First lady Melania Trump smiles after signing a welcome poster made for her at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The White House policy prosecuting all adults who enter the United States illegally remains in place even if they arrive with children, President Donald Trump said as his wife defiantly toured a southern border detention center.

Trump defended the “zero tolerance” policy at the conclusion of a Cabinet meeting at the White House amid confusion about the status of the program and the fates of detained migrant families.

Analysis: Migrants, ‘Rocket Man’ and Trump’s Ever-Changing Mind
Executive order another contradictory move in an ever-changing presidency

President Donald Trump speaks to reporters as he arrives at the Capitol for a meeting on immigration with House Republicans on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Donald Trump is a hardliner. Until he’s not. Donald Trump is open to compromise. Until he’s not.

The president — yet again — on Thursday reversed himself on a major issue by ending his administration’s practice of separating migrant families. In doing so, he bowed to all kinds of pressure: from his wife and daughter, from human rights groups, from Democratic members — and even from his fellow Republicans.