Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
August 30, 2015

Posts by David Eldridge

114 Posts

August 21, 2015

Despite Side Deal Report, Support Lines Up for Iran Deal (Updated)

Nadler, D-N.Y., participates in the news conference at the Capitol to introduce H.R.1962, the "Free Flow of Information Act of 2013" on Wednesday, May 22, 2013. The legislation would "increase protections for member

Nadler is the latest Democrat to back the Iran deal. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 4:49 p.m. | Despite revelations this week of a previously undisclosed side deal, despite face-to-face entreaties from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and despite nonstop criticism from Republicans, the Iran nuclear deal continues to pick up steam in Congress.

On Friday, Rep. Jerrold Nadler announced his support, saying the deal, “for all its flaws, gives us the best chance of stopping Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.”

Full story

August 16, 2015

Gowdy Predicts Marathon Benghazi Hearing in October

UNITED STATES - JULY 6 - Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., asks a question to GOP presidential hopeful and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee during the Presidential Town Hall series, hosted by Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., at the Civic Center of Anderson in Anderson, S.C. on Monday, July 6, 2015. Photo By Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Clinton’s Oct. 22 hearing appearance is likely to be a marathon, Gowdy said. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Oct. 22 appearance before the House committee investigating the Benghazi attack is shaping up as a potentially explosive showdown between the Democratic presidential front-runner and panel Chairman Trey Gowdy, who said Sunday he expects a marathon hearing.

“If she’s going to insist … that she’s only coming once, I’m going to insist that that once be fully constructive, which means that she’s going to be there a while,” the chairman of the House Select Committee on Benghazi told “Fox News Sunday.” “We’re going to stay there until all of the questions [are answered].” Full story

July 29, 2015

Pelosi Cites Fattah’s Service, Calls Charges ‘Saddening’ (Updated) (Video)

UNITED STATES - JULY 16: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., holds up a copy of the Iran nuclear deal as she speaks during her weekly on camera media availability on Thursday, July 16, 2015.  (Photo By Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Pelosi (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 2 p.m. | House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., released the following statement Wednesday after news that Rep. Chaka Fattah, D-Pa., has been indicted on 29 counts of racketeering conspiracy, bribery and wire fraud as part of an FBI and IRS probe.

Full story

July 24, 2015

Democrats Push Back Hard on Clinton Email Story

Clinton waves to tourists as she makes her way through the Capitol en route to the Democratic Senate Policy luncheon, July 14, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Clinton  (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

For months, it looked like the partisan wrangling over Hillary Rodham Clinton’s emails might be relegated to the occasional House Select Committee on Benghazi hearing and that panel’s increasingly contentious clashes between Republican Chairman Trey Gowdy and ranking Democrat Elijah E. Cummings.

That changed dramatically Friday, after the New York Times reported two federal inspectors general had asked the Department of Justice to open a “criminal” investigation into the handling of classified information in some of the Clinton emails stored on her private server.

Within hours, Gowdy, Cummings, House Speaker John A. Boehner and the former secretary of State were firing off statements, trading quips and racing to react to a story the Clinton team immediately dismissed as without merit.

“Maybe the heat is getting to everyone,” Clinton said before a speech on the economy in New York Friday afternoon.

The DOJ initially confirmed the Times story before backing away a few hours later, specifically from the use of the word “criminal” in connection with the request, which came from two inspectors general from the State Department and intelligence agencies.

Cummings and other Democrats pounced, calling the Times’ report inaccurate.

Cummings said in a statement the DOJ told him directly the inspectors general’s request was “a ‘routine’ referral, and they have no idea how the New York Times got this so wrong.”

Clinton, who has agreed to an as-yet unscheduled appearance before the Benghazi panel, said, “I have said repeatedly that I will answer questions before the House Committee. We are all accountable to the American people to get the facts right, and I will do my part. But I’m aso going to stay focused on the issues, parituclarly the big issues that matter to American families.”

Boehner called on Clinton, who has ackowledged using a personal, home-based server to store thousands of emails from her tenure as secretary of State, to hand over the server “immediately.”

“Two inspector generals appointed by President Obama have now called on the Justice Department to investigate Secretary Clinton’s mishandling of classified email. If Secretary Clinton truly has nothing to hide, she can prove it by immediately turning over her server to the proper authorities and allowing them to examine the complete record,” Boehner said in a statement.

Gowdy echoed the speaker in his statement, saying, “The number of questions surrounding Secretary Clinton’s unusual email arrangement continues to grow.”

The Benghazi panel was created by Boehner in May 2014 to consolidate investigations into the September 2012 terror attack that killed four Americans in Libya, but Democrats have increasingly dismissed the committee’s efforts as a partisan witch hunt aimed at derailing Clinton’s bid for the presidency.

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By David Eldridge Posted at 4:37 p.m.
Benghazi

June 14, 2015

Ryan Still Optimistic on Trade Deal: ‘Heavy Lift Is Done’

House Ways and Means chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., speaks with Roll Call in the House Ways and Means Committee room in the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, April 30, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll

Ryan is still optimistic on trade bills. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Ways and Means Chairman Paul D. Ryan, Capitol Hill’s biggest Republican proponent of “fast-track” trade legislation, said Sunday he remains optimistic, despite the recent collapse of a deal that would have cleared the way for President Barack Obama to negotiate a 12-nation Pacific pact.

Ryan, R-Wis., in an interview on Fox News Sunday, said the most difficult legislative work required for fast track — lining up GOP and Democratic votes for Trade Promotion Authority for the president — is done. Now it’s up to Obama and the Democrats to come to an agreement on an underlying worker-training bill that failed on the floor Friday, derailing the entire package. Full story

June 9, 2015

House Votes Headed for Extra Innings?

UNITED STATES - JULY 30: House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., speaks during the House Democrats' news conference to discuss Republican lawsuit against President Obama and the House Democrats' focus on the economy on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Hoyer, D-Md., said lawmakers might be called back to the Capitol to vote after Thursday night’s Congressional Baseball Game. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Talk about your extra innings.

House lawmakers were told to expect late hours this week as leadership tries to plow through a backlog of appropriations bills — but coming back to the Capitol to vote after Thursday night’s 54th Annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game seems like, well, a tough call. Full story

May 14, 2015

Democrat Tosses ‘Shame’ Card Back at Boehner

Smith, D-Wash., speaks during the Democratic members of the House Select Committee on Benghazi news conference on Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Smith wouldn’t back down from the shame game. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Shaming the other guy into submission is pretty much impossible on Capitol Hill (this is Congress, after all), but that doesn’t stop Democrats and Republicans from trying.

After John A. Boehner played the card in a Thursday news conference, telling reporters that voting against the upcoming defense spending bill  as some Democrats have threatened to do  would be “shameful,” one Democrat threw the gauntlet right back at the Ohio Republican. Full story

May 11, 2015

Michael Steel Trades Boehnerland for Bushworld

teel talks with reporters after the republican leadership weekly press conference in the U.S. Capitol on November 19, 2013. (Photo By Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call)

Steel, right, pictured here in 2013 wrangling reporters after a Republican news conference, will work for a political action committee supporting Jeb Bush. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Michael Steel, one of John A. Boehner’s top aides, is leaving the speaker’s office for a job in Miami as an adviser to a Jeb Bush political action committee.

The speaker, in an emailed statement, called his longtime spokesman a “pro’s pro.” Full story

May 8, 2015

Gowdy’s Benghazi Panel Wants Clinton’s Top Aides

 

Rep. Gowdy will head the new House probe into the 2012 attack in Benghazi, Libya.  (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Gowdy issued an “interim update” on Benghazi Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Republican chairman of the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Friday defended the pace of his panel’s year-old investigation into the 2012 terror attack and announced plans to interview three top aides to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., in a 15-page “Interim Progress Update” released on the one-year-anniversary of the committee’s creation, blamed the Obama administration for delays in the panel’s probe.

Full story

By David Eldridge Posted at 7:11 p.m.
Benghazi

May 3, 2015

Boehner on Hillary Clinton: ‘I Don’t Have a Word for Her’

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Boehner doesn’t have much to say about Clinton. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

House Speaker John A. Boehner may have been channeling that old grade-school rule in an interview broadcast Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” Asked by host Chuck Todd to weigh in on the 2016 presidential contest, the Ohio Republican confirmed again that he likes former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and he’s a “big fan” of John Kasich, the current governor of his home state. But Hillary Rodham Clinton? Not so much. Full story

April 22, 2015

2016’s ‘October Surprise?’ Not Much of a Surprise

Boehner is in a tough spot. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Benghazi panel has more work to do, Baehner said Wendesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

October revelations about the Obama administration’s handling of Benghazi weren’t enough to get the Republican presidential candidate over the hump in 2012 — but that doesn’t mean it won’t work in 2016, right?

The ongoing partisan rancor over the GOP-controlled House Select Committee on Benghazi erupted again Wednesday after Bloomberg reported a day earlier that the panel’s final report — originally expected sometime his year — likely won’t be finished until sometime in the presidential election year of 2016. Full story

April 16, 2015

Homeland Security Morale Woes Blamed on Immigration Policies (Video)

UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 17: Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., speaks during the House Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi hearing on "Implementation of the Accountability Review Board Recommendations" on Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Gowdy said the president’s immigration policies have a lot to do with low morale at the Department of Homeland Security. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Two Republican House members, both former prosecutors, said at a Capitol Hill hearing Thursday that White House immigration policies are contributing to low morale at Homeland Security.

The comments came as Reps. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina and Ken Buck of Colorado questioned federal officials at a House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations hearing titled “The Worst Places to Work in the Federal Government.” Full story

April 15, 2015

Funeral Services Held in Ohio for Boehner’s Brother

Funeral services were held Wednesday in Ohio for House Speaker John A. Boehner’s younger brother, Richard “Rick” A. Boehner, who died Saturday of natural causes. He was 60.

Boehner’s office confirmed to CQ Roll Call Wednesday that the speaker attended the funeral services in Liberty Township, outside Cincinnati.

According to the Dayton Daily News, the speaker’s brother was a “blue-collar mechanic” survived by his wife Sharon Boehner, two stepchildren, six grandchildren, three sisters and eight brothers, including the speaker.

Olivia Hnat, a spokesperson for John Boehner told the paper: “The Speaker is saddened by the death of his brother, who was cherished and loved by so many. He appreciates the prayers for the Boehner family at this time.”

Correction 8:17 p.m.

An earlier version of this post misstated the name of the Dayton newspaper.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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By David Eldridge Posted at 7:42 p.m.
John Boehner

April 9, 2015

Conservatives Find Political Red Meat in USDA Diet Guidelines

From the IRS to the Environmental Protection Agency to the Federal Communications Commission, federal agencies are under more scrutiny from congressional Republicans concerned about regulatory overreach than at any time in Barack Obama’s presidency.

Add the Department of Agriculture to the list. Full story

April 6, 2015

Best Bracket in Congress? Maybe, but It’s Tough to Top Romney

Deutch, D-Fla., speaks with Roll Call in his office in the Rayburn House Office Building on Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Deutch’s bracket is in the top 2 percent in the ESPN contest. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

After correctly calling each of the teams in the Final Four, Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., was bragging on April 4 — deservedly so — about his NCAA bracket.

“Best bracket in Congress?” the Florida congressman asked on Twitter, noting his ESPN Tournament Challenge entry was ranked in the top 2 percent of the contest’s almost 12 million entries worldwide.

Unfortunately for Deutch, that’s probably as good as it’s going to get: He correctly picked Duke over Michigan State, but he also incorrectly picked Kentucky over Wisconsin — and had Kentucky winning the championship, which obviously isn’t going to happen.

Still, the Florida lawmaker had a much better year than the master of “Barack-etology,” the president himself (who is down around the 40th percentile this year).

But the gold standard for political hoops prognosticators in 2015 is undoubtedly Mitt Romney — the 2012 GOP presidential contender’s bracket is, amazingly, in the 99.98th percentile in the ESPN contest.

“He’s got more time to scout these teams out,” Deutch told CQ Roll Call Monday with a chuckle.

The Big Ten alum (he’s a graduate of Michigan) said he’d be rooting for Wisconsin over Duke in the title game.

And he’s not letting the success in the ESPN contest go to his head — in the office pool, he said, his bracket’s in last place.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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