john cornyn

Speaker Ryan's Greatest Hurdle: Congressional Math

Ryan should have no problem dealing with Senate Republicans, but problems still remain. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

It's well-documented that Speaker Paul D. Ryan's success depends on his ability to work with the Republican Conference's right flank, but that's just the half.  

For any legislation to advance to the president's desk, the Wisconsin Republican must also find common ground with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. It's not as much a personality issue as it is congressional math, and that means balancing the desires of conservative hardliners with McConnell's reality of needing at least six Democratic votes to clear anything for the president's signature. Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas, who is no stranger to the far-right's ire, is optimistic. He said Ryan seemed like "the one guy" who could unite House Republicans on legislation that has a chance in the Senate.  

Budget Deal's Fate Looks Good in Senate

Republican leaders, including Cornyn, right, walk Tuesday to meet the press. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 3:26 p.m. | Senators feel confident a two-year budget deal that also lifts the debt limit before the Nov. 3 deadline has the necessary support.  

Leaders are looking at 1 a.m. early Friday for a cloture vote, but the exact time is still up in the air as senators negotiate a final agreement. Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas, told reporters Thursday he was confident the deal would get the 60 votes required to advance, and that the expectation is a vote on final passage could come in the hours after the cloture vote Friday morning.  

Crop Insurance Fix Likely Coming Down the Road

Cornyn says senators working to address crop insurance concerns. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

   

Updated 5:07 p.m. | Farm-state lawmakers have been assured by leaders that a provision in the bipartisan budget deal that would trim the federal crop insurance subsidy program will be replaced down the road, Senate Republican Caucus Chairman John Thune confirmed Wednesday afternoon.  

Cornyn Pitching Mental Health as Response to Gun Violence (Video)

Cornyn is taking the reins on a Republican response to mass shootings. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

While the White House, frustrated with congressional inaction, weighs its own crackdown on guns , the Senate's No. 2 Republican is looking to address the country's cycle of mass killings with mental health legislation that includes a stronger background check system.  

Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the majority whip, believes the mental health angle is an opportunity for consensus. Other Republicans have signaled similar sentiment, but Cornyn is the most prominent of them. “This legislation is a product of my frustration with legislation that won’t actually solve any problems,” Cornyn told CQ Roll Call. “In other words, I look at all of the legislation that gets introduced and I wonder: 'OK, which of these incidents might have been prevented if this legislation had been law?' And there isn’t any.”  

Laughs and a Hug at Sentencing Overhaul Unveiling (Video)

Sen. Cory Booker and several other members of the Senate Judiciary Committee unveiled a bipartisan overhaul to the criminal justice system. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Cory Booker stood on a platform with eight other senators, holding back his desire to hug them all.  

The New Jersey Democrat was gushing with joy as he and many members of the Judiciary Committee announced a major overhaul to the criminal justice system, particularly on sentencing and recidivism reduction. The effort uniting senators from across the political spectrum, as well as disparate interest groups, is particularly notable in a Congress known more for hyper-partisanship.  

Pope Francis Unlikely to Influence Sentencing Bill

Sen. John Cornyn and Sen. Charles "Chuck" Grassley both expect a criminal justice package to be introduced soon (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Argentine-born Pope Francis will visit prisoners in Philadelphia this week, fueling speculation that he'll make criminal justice reform part of his message on Thursday to Congress.  

But even though Sen. Charles E. Grassley has shown a willingness to revisit federal sentencing laws, the tough-on-crime chairman of the Judiciary Committee is unlikely to be persuaded by the Vatican leader. "We legislate according to American people," the Iowa Republican told CQ Roll Call on Wednesday.  

Special Prosecutor for Clinton Emails Would Be a Waste of Money, Leahy Says

Leahy, right, said he had faith in Lynch's ability to handle the Clinton email matter. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy on Tuesday compared a Republican request for a special counsel to probe the email server used by former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to something from "Alice in Wonderland."  

"Let's not spend millions of dollars more in taxpayers' money. I have complete faith in the integrity of the Attorney General and the director of the FBI," the Vermont Democrat told CQ Roll Call in a brief interview. "They seem to just want to spend millions and millions and millions of dollars in taxpayer money to go after her. These are the same people who refused to pass money to increase security in our embassies. Now they want to spend millions of dollars talking about Benghazi."  

The Tweeting Whip

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Send a tweet to @JohnCornyn, and it turns out you're actually reaching Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn.  

The Texas Republican says he uses the account to share what he's reading or paying attention to with his constituents and other followers (he has more than 63,000). Cornyn's Twitter account has issued more than 15,000 tweets since the early adopter joined in February 2008, and he's the highest-ranking member of Congress who is regularly doing the tweeting on his own.  

Cornyn: 'We Learned the Hard Way'

"We have the responsibility to govern," Cornyn said. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

At the start of the last Congress, John Cornyn wrote an editorial titled "Partial Government Shutdown May Be Needed to Restore Fiscal Sanity." He's singing a different tune today.  

"I've evolved," the Texas Republican and newly minted Senate majority whip said in an interview last week with CQ Roll Call.  

Cornyn Warns Against Confirming Holder Successor in Lame Duck (Video)

Cornyn (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn said Monday the debate over replacing Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. will "take a lot of oxygen out of the air" for the post-election lame-duck session.  

"There's so much ill will already, this would just poison the well even further," the Texas Republican said in an interview with the editorial board of The Dallas Morning News.