Massachusetts

AOC, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley seated on Oversight Committee
Spots for the progressive freshman signal future fireworks in investigative hearings

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., will join the House Oversight Committee. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

A new crop of progressive freshman has been seated on the House of Representative’s investigative committee — signaling future fireworks and higher C-SPAN ratings for its hearings this year.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., and Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass. — who all tack to the left and have shown an appetite for aggressively challenging the White House and corporate interests — have been tapped to join the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Tuesday night.

Hakeem Jeffries calls Trump ‘grand wizard of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue’
Top Democrats use MLK Day an opportunity to criticize Trump’s southern border wall as bigoted

House Democratic Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries referred to President Donald Trump as the “birther in chief” in his MLK Day remarks. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democratic Caucus chairman Hakeem Jeffries likened President Donald Trump to a leader of the Ku Klux Klan at a rally marking Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

“These are challenging times in the United States of America — we have a hater in the White House, a birther in chief, the grand wizard of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue,” Jeffries said at an event hosted by the National Action Network in Harlem. “One of the things that we’ve learned is that while Jim Crow may be dead, he still got some nieces and nephews that are alive and well.”

Kamala Harris announces on MLK Day she’ll run for president
Former California AG is second black woman to serve in the Senate

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., announced she is running for president on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. She is the second black woman to serve in the Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

California Sen. Kamala Harris announced on Martin Luther King Jr. Day that she is running for president, adding her name to a growing list of Democrats who are positioning themselves to run against President Donald Trump in 2020.

Harris, who was twice elected as California’s attorney general, is only the second black woman to serve in the U.S. Senate.

Sen. Bob Casey not running for president
Casey announced his decision in a statement excoriating Republicans and Trump

Sen. Bob Casey, D-PA., is interviewed for TV in the Russell Rotunda on March 20, 2013. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Bob Casey announced Friday that he won’t make a bid for the White House in 2020.

In a statement, the Pennsylvania Democrat said that 2020 is “not the time.”

Elizabeth Warren wants big banks to give details of assistance to furloughed federal workers as shutdown continues
Democratic senator highlights more transparency from credit unions about help for the workers who are not being paid

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., wants details of what large banks are doing to help customers affected by the partial government shutdown. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren wants specifics from big banks about what they are doing to help federal workers who haven’t received paychecks due to the partial government shutdown.

The Massachusetts Democrat, who is often an adversary of large financial institutions, actually praised some of them for public statements expressing support for the furloughed federal employees (and those required to report to work without pay).

Armed Services experience is ‘in’ for 2020 presidential
Gillibrand, Warren and Gabbard will play up their national security cred as they vie to be commander in chief

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard greets veteran Celestino Almeda in 2017. The Hawaii congresswoman is one of three sitting Armed Services members eyeing the presidency. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Three sitting members of Congress who have announced plans to seek the presidency in 2020 have a few things in common: they’re all Democrats, they’re all women, and they all sit on their respective chamber’s Armed Services committee.

To date, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand have formed committees to explore a challenge to President Donald Trump in 2020, while Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has officially launched her presidential campaign.

Disaster aid bill could grow, block diversion of funds to wall
Measure unlikely to go far in Senate

Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga., (left), is pushing for a disaster aid package. Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., opposes an amendment Democrats are preparing that he describes as an “exercise in futility. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House is scheduled to take up a $12.1 billion disaster aid package Wednesday that would reopen the nine closed Cabinet agencies for three weeks and, if approved during floor debate, prevent President Donald Trump from tapping the bill’s emergency funds for building a border wall.

The underlying bill would direct aid to victims of recent calamities such as hurricanes that hit Florida and the Carolinas, wildfires that ravaged California and typhoons that struck island territories in the Pacific, House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita M. Lowey, D-N.Y., told the Rules Committee on Tuesday.

Freshman Democrats march to McConnell’s office to urge him to reopen government
McConnell should stop taking cues from Trump, bring up House bills, new members say

From left, freshman members Reps. Joe Neguse, D-Colo., Susie Lee, D-Nev., and Katie Hill, D-Calif., make their way into the Capitol office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to call on the Senate to act on reopening the government on Tuesday, January 15, 2019. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A group of roughly a dozen freshman House Democrats on Tuesday marched to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office in the Capitol to ask that he take up House bills to open up government. 

The Kentucky Republican was on the Senate floor when the freshmen stopped by his office, but his staff welcomed them inside. The staff chatted briefly with the new House Democrats and told them they’d set up a meeting with the majority leader.

Susan Collins has a 2020 problem
The Kavanaugh saga damaged her brand — but by how much?

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, has a durable political brand centered on moderation and serious deliberation as a lawmaker. But 2020 poses a potentially perilous political contest for her if she seeks re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

If Sen. Susan Collins runs for a fifth term, she ought to expect a very different race than in the past. Forget coasting to victory, no matter the opponent or even the nature of the election cycle.

Collins will start off as vulnerable — a top Democratic target in a state carried by Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Trump’s snow day Twitter rant spills into Monday with attacks on Dems
President also mocks report of FBI probe into whether he worked for Russia

President Donald Trump speaks to the media before departing on Marine One from the White House on Thursday. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

After a snowy Sunday of Twitter threats and jabs, President Donald Trump on Monday morning fired off more posts blaming Democrats for the now-record partial government shutdown and mocking a report the FBI opened an investigation over concerns he was working for Russia.

During a mid-December Oval Office meeting that devolved into a bickering match, the president told Democratic leaders he would “take the mantle” of any partial shutdown. With nine Cabinet agencies and other offices now shuttered for more than three weeks, Trump on Monday wrote that “Nancy and Cryin’ Chuck can end the Shutdown in 15 minutes,” referring to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer of New York.