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September 3, 2015

Posts in "DC-Hill Relations"

July 27, 2015

D.C. Drawn Into Sanctuary Cities Debate

Gohmert introduced "The Safer DC Act" Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Gohmert introduced “The Safer DC Act” Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The House has voted to limit funding for so-called sanctuary cities, but one lawmaker is pushing to take further action in the District of Columbia, dictating specific policies for law enforcement.

Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, has introduced “The Safer D.C. Act” declaring the District is a “sanctuary city,” or a jurisdiction with policies that shelter undocumented immigrants. “The Constitution explicitly vests Congress with exclusive jurisdiction over the District of Columbia — and we should take action,” Gohmert said. “Therefore, at the very least, Congress must use our explicit Constitutional power to ensure that at least the District of Columbia is not a sanctuary city.” Full story

July 21, 2015

Lawmaker Threatens to Strip WMATA of Management

Mica conducted a hearing on WMATA safety and management. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

 

Amid concerns about the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s management of the second busiest transit system in the country, one member of Congress is threatening to strip WMATA of its current management and structure.

“If this nonsense continues in the lack of management and the ability to get extensive management in place, I will work, and I think I can get support, to require that the operations and management be put up for bid and be given to an operating company,” Rep. John L. Mica said at a hearing on Metro safety and management Tuesday evening. Full story

July 17, 2015

Metro Set to Go Under Congressional Microscope, Again

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority officials will once again ascend Capitol Hill to answer lawmakers’ questions about the transit system’s safety and management.

Members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold a hearing on July 21 to follow-up on questions raised after the deadly incident at the L’Enfant Metro stop in January, where one woman died and dozens were hospitalized after being trapped in a smoke-filled train. Full story

July 2, 2015

D.C. Statehood Gets Independence Day Push

Pelosi's office encouraged other offices to tweet about D.C. statehood. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Pelosi’s office encouraged other offices to tweet about D.C. statehood. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

House Democrats are voicing their support for the District of Columbia statehood effort ahead of Independence Day, though some of their leaders do not co-sponsor the statehood bill.

In an email sent to House Democratic offices Thursday morning, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s press office encouraged offices to retweet Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., who tweeted, “This July 4, we renew our fight to end #TaxationWithoutRepresentation in the nation’s capital with #DCStatehood!” The “Digital Dems Early Bird” email sent to offices highlights various caucus priorities each day. Full story

June 30, 2015

D.C. Gun Fight Advancing Through Courts

Norton (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Norton has accused GOP lawmakers of bullying D.C. over its gun laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A federal appeals court has expedited the case of a trio of men who filed suit against the District of Columbia in February after being denied handgun carry licenses, and ruled that D.C. can keep enforcing a key provision of its concealed carry licensing system in the meantime.

Backed by the Second Amendment Foundation, a nonprofit based in the state of Washington, the men challenged the discretionary nature of the D.C.’s gun licensing system, which requires gun owners demonstrate a “good” or “proper” reason to obtain a concealed carry permit. Full story

June 29, 2015

D.C. Statehood Bill a ‘Take That’ to Republicans

Carper, left, chaired a hearing on D.C. statehood last Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Carper, left, chaired a hearing on D.C. statehood last Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Despite the uphill battle for District of Columbia statehood, Sen. Thomas R. Carper, D-Del., has reintroduced a statehood bill noting that the District’s unique political status is contrary to the American values celebrated on Independence Day.

“These Americans serve in our military, die defending our country, serve on our juries, and pay federal taxes,” Carper said of District residents in a statement. “Yet, despite their civic contributions, they are not afforded a vote in either chamber of Congress. This situation is simply not fair, and it isn’t consistent with the values we celebrate as a country on July 4th every year.” Full story

June 26, 2015

Norton Picks Gun Fight With Sergeant-at-Arms, GOP

UNITED STATES - MARCH 4: Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., heads to the House floor for votes on Wednesday, March 4, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Schweikert argues D.C. would be a safer place with fewer gun restrictions. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In the wake of mass shootings in Charleston, S.C., Washington murmured about resurrecting failed firearm control legislation, yet the House’s Second Amendment defenders stuck to their guns about a push to further dismantle local weapons laws in the District of Columbia.

“Even though we have a lot of folks on this issue that speak emotionally, we have really good data sets from at least our state that show from experience,” said Rep. David Schweikert, an Arizona Republican who endorsed a bill supporters say would take away the D.C. Council’s ability to enact gun control measures. Full story

June 23, 2015

Norton Vows to Fight GOP Attempts to Block D.C. Laws

Norton said she is going to fight the riders. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Norton said she is going to fight the riders. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., reaffirmed her effort Tuesday to fight congressional attempts to block the District of Columbia’s anti-discrimination laws, while activists detailed the consequences if those attempts are successful.

In round two of a fight to preserve two laws that the District government argues combat discrimination based on reproductive health decisions and sexual orientation, Norton faces a familiar fight against policy riders attached to the District’s spending bill. Full story

June 18, 2015

Region’s Leaders Demand Metro Accountability

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Federal Transit Administration released a scathing report Wednesday detailing the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s safety and management failures, leading the region’s officeholders to demand accountability.

“The FTA’s safety audit confirms my belief that WMATA is in need of a management restructuring and organizational turn-around,” District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a statement. “I will continue to work with the District’s appointees to the Board of Directors and our regional partners to demand accountability.” Full story

June 17, 2015

GOP Tries Again to Block D.C. Anti-Discrimination Law

Palazzo sponsored the amendment to block RHNDA. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Palazzo sponsored the amendment to block RHNDA. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The House Appropriations Committee voted Wednesday to block a District of Columbia law, attempting to finish what House Republicans started a few months ago.

In April, the House voted along mostly party lines to formally block D.C.’s Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act, which aims to combat workplace discrimination based on reproductive health decisions. House conservatives argued the act could violate religious freedom, and activated the formal process to block a D.C. law for the first time in more than 20 years. However, since the Senate did not act, the bill became law, so Republicans opted Wednesday to try and combat the law in the appropriations process. Full story

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