National Institutes of Health

Another Year, Another Stopgap Likely Beyond Jan. 19
Even if they agree this week, lawmakers won’t be home free

Office of Budget and Management Director Mick Mulvaney will meet with congressional leaders on Wednesday to discuss the legislative agenda and the way forward on government spending. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Even if congressional leaders and top White House officials reach an agreement on new fiscal 2018 spending levels this week, lawmakers will still need to pass another temporary spending bill to keep the government open past Jan. 19.

Appropriators cannot rewrite all 12 appropriations bills and package them for floor votes before the third stopgap spending bill of fiscal 2018 expires in less than three weeks, aides in both parties said Tuesday.

House GOP Leaders Pushing for Stopgap Spending Bill
Securing last-minute votes may be needed

Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., predicts passage of a stopgap spending bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House GOP leaders are moving forward with a vote Thursday on a stopgap spending bill and a short-term extension of government surveillance powers lasting through Jan. 19, although they were working late Wednesday to secure some last-minute votes to pass it.

Several members of the House Freedom Caucus were withholding their support when leadership whipped the plan Wednesday evening.

McCain Back in Arizona Until January
Absence comes as GOP prepares for vote on tax bill

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is seen in the senate subway before a vote in the Capitol on Dec. 6. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. John McCain returned to Arizona this weekend to receive therapy related to his cancer treatments as Republicans prepared a major vote for their tax overhaul bill.

A statement released Sunday from Dr. Mark Gilbert, chief of neuro-oncology at the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute, said McCain responded well to treatment he received for a viral infection.

Opinion: One Year Later — Why 21st Century Cures Still Matters
Help underway for diseases that impact virtually every family

Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., left, and Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Colo., hold thank you signs made by Max Schill, who’s diagnosed with Noonan Syndrome, a rare genetic condition, after the U.S. House of Representatives voted in favor of the 21st Century Cures Act on Capitol Hill in Washington in 2015. Upton and DeGette spearheaded the act. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

 

 

Lankford Report Critiques Funds for Trolley, Dating Study
‘Clearly, this is cutting-edge research with shocking results’

Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., speaks during a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing in Dirksen Building on Federal Labor Relations Authority nominations on November 7, 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The federal government has spent billions of dollars since 2015 on items such as a study of refugee services in Iceland, virtual reality puppets, and expired body armor for law enforcement personnel, according to Sen. James Lankford’s third annual “waste report” released Monday.

The Oklahoma Republican used the 86-page report to criticize a variety of departments and agencies for how they used their annual appropriations during the last three fiscal years. 

Trump to Nominate New HHS Secretary Alex Azar
Former pharmaceutical president vocal Obamacare opponent

Tom Price (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Trump announced on Twitter he plans to nominate Alex Azar to be the next secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Azar will be “a star for better healthcare and lower drug prices,” Trump wrote in his tweet announcing the coming nomination.

Trump Declares Opioid Crisis a ‘National Health Emergency’
“We can be the generation that ends the opioid epidemic,” president says

President Donald Trump said addressing the opioids crisis “will require all of our effort.” (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Updated 5:30 p.m. | President Donald Trump on Thursday declared the nations’s opioid crisis a “national health emergency,” saying the country would fight the drug epidemic as a “national family.”

“This is a worldwide problem,” he said, flanked by public health officials, families with small children and first lady Melania Trump in the East Room of the White House. “It’s just been so long in making. Addressing it will require all of our effort.”

Trump to Declare Opioid Crisis a Nationwide Public Health Emergency
Officials say administration working with Congress on additional funding

President Donald Trump’s declaration will make the opioid crisis the number one priority for federal agencies, senior administration officials said. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images file photo)

President Donald Trump will declare the opioid crisis a nationwide public health emergency on Thursday, according to senior administration officials.

The declaration would direct all federal agencies to make the crisis their number one priority. It would include awareness and prevention programs and allow the federal government to work with states to redistribute already-available grants that support substance abuse efforts.

Congressional Democrats Call for More Gun Violence Research
Report, House bill draw attention to lack of federal funding

Democratic Rep. Stephanie Murphy sponsored a bill that could lead to more federal funding for gun violence research. (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

Congressional Democrats have launched renewed calls for federal research into gun violence prevention in the aftermath of the Las Vegas shooting.

Senate Democrats on Wednesday presented a report from the Government Accountability Office highlighting the limitations lawmakers have imposed on researchers attempting to understand gun violence, which they called a “public health crisis.”

Chris Collins Slams Louise Slaughter as a ‘Despicable Human Being’ Over Ethics Review
New York Democrat filed ethics charges against Republican colleague

New York Rep. Chris Collins is facing scrutiny over whether he shared nonpublic information about a company in which he is an investor. (Tom Williams/Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Rep. Chris Collins has slammed fellow New Yorker Louise M. Slaughter as a “despicable human being” over the ethics charges the Democratic congresswoman filed against him.

“She’s on a witch hunt, she’s a despicable human,” Collins said of his colleague, Fox News reported. “You don’t go after another member.”