Filibuster

‘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.

Uncertain Immigration Votes Set in House
Chances of either bill passing looked even slimmer after Trump tweeted Thursday morning

Rep. Mark Walker, R-N.C., left, and Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., talk as they leave the House Republican Conference meeting on June 13. The House will consider a bill backed by Goodlatte on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

After weeks of huddled negotiations, House Republicans on Thursday will attempt to bridge a longstanding intraparty divide and pass immigration legislation that would protect so-called Dreamers from deportation and bolster President Donald Trump’s enforcement and border security agenda.

The House will vote on two bills, both of which are long shots to pass given that no Democrats plan to support them and Republicans are split. The measures face crucial tests around lunchtime, when the House will vote on the rules for both. If Republicans don’t unite at least on those votes, one or both bills could die before coming up for a vote final passage.

This Time, Trump Undercuts Both House GOP Immigration Bills
President: ‘What is the purpose’ of chamber’s votes if Senate Dems oppose both?

Speaker Paul D. Ryan escorts President Donald Trump to the House Republican caucus meeting in the Capitol basement on Tuesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump, the leader of the Republican Party, Thursday morning gave already skeptical House GOP members even less incentive to support either immigration bill set for floor votes later in the day.

Conservatives are skeptical of a compromise measure crafted largely by Republican leaders during talks with the conference’s various factions. And moderates have long had heartburn about a conservative measure.

House GOP Immigration Talks Raise Questions on Path to Law
Negotiators float cuts that couldn’t pass Senate

Speaker Paul D. Ryan tested the waters with a small cross section of House Republicans ahead of Thursday’s conference-wide immigration discussion. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans say the goal of immigration negotiations is to reach agreement on legislation that could become law, but the ideas floated Wednesday run contrary to that claim.

While the negotiators appear to be seriously attempting to compromise on the legal status of so-called Dreamers, they’re also discussing cuts to legal immigration — like reducing family and diversity visas — that if passed through the House would have no chance of advancing in the Senate.

GOP Slips Past Another Senate Custom, and Democrats Turn Blue
Home-state senators’ sway over judicial nominees is quickly disappearing

Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have decided that the use of a “blue slip” when considering judicial nominees is a practice that needs to fade away, Hawkings writes. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The latest threat to what’s made the Senate the Senate for generations can be illustrated with a sheet of paper the color of cornflowers.

First to go was the reverence for compromise. It went out the window a decade or so ago, the start of the current era when the most conservative Democrat is reliably positioned to the left of the most liberal Republican. Then the veneration of minority-party rights got obliterated, five years ago, with a blast of “nuclear” limits on filibuster powers.

5 Obstacles to a House Republican Immigration Deal
Dreamer question, rules for debate, Democrats, the Senate and Trump all stand in the way

Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Calif., says moderate Republicans want the House to pass a bipartisan immigration bill that will have a chance of passing in the Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans are trying to do in a matter of weeks what they couldn’t accomplish during their nearly eight years in the majority — pass a sweeping immigration bill.

The GOP is facing a self-imposed deadline to move legislation the third week of June that, among other things, would protect so-called Dreamers from deportation. The legal status of those young undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children is in limbo, along with the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.

McConnell’s Plan for a Packed Summer Senate Agenda
Majority leader says he is “not into playing games this summer”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell spoke with Roll Call about the busy summer agenda. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 3:18 p.m. | Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s aggressive summer legislative agenda features floor time for bundles of spending bills, as well as three major authorizations.

The Kentucky Republican said he would prioritize the fiscal 2019 defense authorization, a new farm bill and updated water resources development legislation.

Opinion: Is the Democrats’ Pivot to a ‘Scandal Strategy’ a Wrong Turn?
Voters may not bite and there’s potential for blowback

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., didn’t “drain the swamp” as promised in 2006, and a Democratic pivot to an anti-corruption strategy may not get much traction with voters, Winston writes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

In 2006, Nancy Pelosi told The Associated Press that after 10-plus years of Republican control of the House, she would begin to “drain the swamp” in her first 100 hours as speaker and also “break the link between lobbyists and legislation.”

Yes. She really said “drain the swamp.”

Republicans Warming to $15 Billion Cuts Package
Dispute remains over whether proposal is protected from filibuster

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did not rule out his chamber considering a proposal to cut spending already authorized, as long as it passes the House. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Republicans appear ready to advance the White House’s $15.4 billion rescissions request through both chambers of Congress, after the administration dropped the idea — for now — of canceling funds provided in the fiscal 2018 omnibus spending bill enacted in March.

“If the House is able to pass the rescissions package, we’ll take a look at it,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday, noting that the so-called special message “does not breach the bipartisan agreement we reached in the caps deal.”

4 of Congress’ Recent Anti-Abortion Actions, After Iowa Passes Measure
A look at Hill action after Iowa legislation passes both state chambers

Guests bow their heads in prayer near the Washington Monument during the annual March for Life on Jan. 27, 2017. Attendees march from the monument to Capitol Hill to oppose abortion. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Iowa state legislature this week passed a bill banning abortions after about six weeks of pregnancy, one of the stricter regulations in the U.S. should the governor sign the bill into law.Dubbed the “heartbeat bill,” the legislation aims to block abortions once a heartbeat is detected, which would essentially ban the procedure for most cases after a month and a half.More lawmakers across the United States started introducing anti-abortion legislation following President Donald Trump’s election. Nineteen states instated 63 restrictions in total to abortion procedures in 2017, the highest number of state laws on the issue since 2013, according to sexual and reproductive health research organization the Guttmacher Institute.States have successfully put more roadblocks in front of abortion, but federal lawmakers have not had such luck. Here are some recent attempts by Congress to limit abortions:

The Senate rejected a bill banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy in January after the bill passed the House in 2017.The “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” introduced by Sen. Lindsey Graham, failed to overcome a Democrat filibuster“To those who believe in this issue, we will be back for another day,” Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina and the chief sponsor of the bill, said in advance of the vote according to the New York Times.