Ken Buck

When a hate crimes hearing goes very wrong, something’s not right in America
Casting a shadow on the hearing, as he does on everything, was the president

House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, left, and ranking member Doug Collins both condemned white nationalism Tuesday. But the hearing quickly devolved into a shameful spectacle, Curtis writes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

OPINION — When people are being threatened, intimidated and murdered, you would think that partisan bickering would take a back seat. But this is the U.S. Congress we’re talking about. Instead, what was supposed to be an examination of white nationalism and the rise of hate crimes on Tuesday devolved into what Americans have wearily begun to expect from their elected representatives. The House Judiciary Committee members inhabited different parties and different planets.

When what’s at stake is this serious, that’s pretty frightening.

House Judiciary Committee approves Violence Against Women Act reauthorization

Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and the majority Democrats on his panel approved a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday approved, along party lines, 22-11, a bill to reauthorize and expand programs designed to help victims of sexual and domestic violence.

The protections and programs authorized by the 1994 law lapsed during the partial government shutdown last year, but were reinstated in the January short-term fiscal 2019 spending deal. An extension was not included in last month’s deal that provided for spending through the end of fiscal 2019.

‘Dead billionaires’ and a tech Peace Corps? Lawmakers float ideas to fix Congress
First hearing of new modernization committee turns into a brainstorming session

Reps. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., left, and John Sarbanes, D-Md., are seen in between testimony during a Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress business meeting in the Capitol on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer kicked off the first hearing of the new Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress with a plea for a return of something from the past: earmarks.

The Maryland Democrat was the first among 30 lawmakers who offered ideas Tuesday to the temporary and bipartisan panel, which has been charged with making recommendations about how to update Congress for the modern era.

The most vulnerable Republican senator in 2020
Colorado’s Cory Gardner has a difficult, but doable, roadmap for re-election

Cory Gardner of Colorado is the most vulnerable Senate Republican heading into the 2020 campaign. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Under normal circumstances, Sen. Cory Gardner would be a clear favorite for re-election.

Personable and politically astute, the Colorado Republican ran a terrific campaign in 2014 to oust Democratic incumbent Mark Udall. But President Donald Trump has energized partisan Democrats and alienated suburban swing voters nationally, and that has made Gardner the most vulnerable GOP senator up for re-election in 2020.

Michael Bennet went viral. Now what?
Colorado Democrat running digital ads about his speech in early primary states

Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet on his way to the Senate floor last month, when he surprised even his own staff by delivering a lengthy and fiery retort to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

It’s been two weeks since Colorado’s senior senator made a national splash with a Senate floor speech that went viral.

But you’d be forgiven if you’d already forgotten about Michael Bennet. He hasn’t been included in most polling of the Democratic field and barely makes the cut in stories about potential candidates.

Lots of legislation would deal with future shutdowns, but most of it DOA
Republicans and Democrats introduced at least 30 bills in January but most won’t go anywhere

Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine introduced multiple bills in January taking aim at government shutdowns. Virginia is home to the most government workers of any state in the country. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Momentum built in Congress last month to address future government shutdowns, with lawmakers from both parties introducing at least 30 bills in January to curb the effects on government workers, create monetary disincentives for lawmakers and administration appointees to let appropriations lapse, or, in some cases, eliminate the government shutdown altogether.

Illinois Democratic Rep. Bill Foster proposed a bill to prohibit House lawmakers from getting their pump on at the Capitol’s member-exclusive gym or grubbing at the Members’ Dining Room, both run by the Architect of the Capitol.

No cracks in Democratic unity as ethics overhaul glides along
Tuesday saw the first congressional hearing for the HR 1 mega-package

Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., is seen after a meeting of the House Democratic Caucus in the Capitol on Wednesday, January 23, 2019. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

If Democrats on the House Judiciary panel have any concerns about their party’s mega-overhaul of voting, ethics, lobbying and campaign finance laws, they kept them private on Tuesday during the measure’s first congressional hearing.

The bill, HR 1, is a top priority of the party in the chamber, though it probably won’t go anywhere in the Senate this Congress after Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky renewed his opposition Tuesday.

Grassroots Have Grown Deeper Since Trump. Now Comes the Hard Part
It hasn’t been all roses, sunshine and lollipops

Protesters descend on Washington on Jan. 20, 2018, as they arrive for the Women's March one year after the inauguration of President Donald Trump. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

First there was the shock of Donald Trump’s election. Then came the marches and protests. Next came the outraged phone calls to Congress.

Now comes the hard part: Getting people elected.

The Investigation Will Be Televised
Ken Buck was 27 years old when he staffed the Iran-Contra investigation. Now he could ‘never be a tyrant’

Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., left, worked for then-Rep. Dick Cheney, R-Wyo., right, as a counsel on the Iran-Contra Investigation. (Courtesy Ken Buck)

As his father watched him from a hospital bed, 27-year-old Ken Buck sat behind Dick Cheney while history was being made.

The Colorado Republican was the assistant minority counsel on the Iran-Contra investigation, working for Cheney, then a Wyoming congressman.

Mike Quigley Is Congress’ Beer Champ
Illinois Democrat names beer after dog, wins cup at Brew Across America festival

Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Ill., hoists the cup beside the Goose Island Beer Company brewmasters and Anheuser-Busch’s vice president of federal affairs, Doug Bailey. (Courtesy Anheuser-Busch)

Rep. Mike Quigley is officially the best brewer in Congress. Well, that’s according to the Brew Across America Beer Festival judges, who awarded his “Scout’s Cerveza” the Brew Democracy Cup on Wednesday.

Anheuser-Busch hosted the second annual event, and 11 lawmakers teamed up with the company’s breweries, or their craft brewery partners, from their home states to create a beer for the competition.