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September 3, 2015

Posts in "Republicans"

August 31, 2015

McConnell Expects to Cut Budget Deal, Avert Shutdown (Video)

Immigration reform is dead in this Congress, per McConnell. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

McConnell expects government-funding talks with the administration will begin after Labor Day. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday that funding the government is the top challenge facing him when he returns to the Capitol next week.

The Kentucky Republican said he would work with the White House to come up with budget levels to keep the government open past Sept. 30, conceding that President Barack Obama won’t sign a measure with a rider defunding Planned Parenthood.

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Ted Cruz Praises Donald Trump, Holds Fire on Boehner

The Texas senator struck a different tone than his party's leader on Planned Parenthood. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz says he will continue to sing Trump’s praises. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Ted Cruz said next week’s rally outside the Capitol with Donald Trump will get more eyeballs and TV cameras with the fellow Republican presidential candidate in attendance.

“An awful lot of the Republican candidates for president have basically taken out a two-by-four and tried to smack Donald Trump and I have very consciously avoided doing that, and I’ve regularly sung his praises,” the Texas Republican said. “It’s a rally that I’m helping organize to oppose this catastrophic nuclear deal, which I think is the single biggest national security threat facing America.”

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Canada Border Wall Idea Smacked by Rand Paul, Patrick Leahy

UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 18: Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., right, talks with Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., before Paul testified at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing titled "Reevaluating the Effectiveness of Federal Mandatory Minimum Sentences." (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

After Walker said a wall on the border with Canada is a “legitimate” idea to look into, Leahy and Paul torched him. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker may think that a wall along the U.S.-Canada border is a “legitimate” idea to look into, but two U.S. senators think it’s “dumb” and “terrible.”

Sens. Rand Paul and Patrick J. Leahy don’t always agree, but they are aligned on opposing a security wall along the northern border, with Paul, a Kentucky Republican, categorizing the comments as just the newest installment of oneupsmanship among GOP presidential hopefuls’ rhetoric on immigration.

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August 21, 2015

Obamacare Repeal Effort Could Wait Until Next Year

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Thune noted Democrats used reconciliation to enact Obamacare the year after the related budget resolution. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The No. 3 Senate Republican hinted there may be no effort to use fast-track budget procedures to get an Obamacare repeal to the president’s desk this year.

During a broader interview about GOP messaging heading into the August recess, Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Thune noted that when Democrats passed the sidecar to the Affordable Care Act with a simple majority in the Senate through budget reconciliation, it was the calendar year after the relevant budget resolution was adopted.

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August 20, 2015

Senator Warns Defense Secretary of Blockade Over Gitmo

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Roberts and Moran have been against transferring Gitmo detainees to Kansas. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Congress is gearing up for another fight over relocating detainees from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and that has Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter making calls.

Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., spoke with Carter Thursday and reiterated his intent to use procedural tools in the Senate to block the transfer of detainees from the naval base at Gitmo to sites on the mainland of the United States, particularly the prison facility at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

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August 13, 2015

Thune Wants GOP Senators Touting Productivity

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Thune, left, says the August recess message is that a GOP majority matters. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Republican senators were sent home for August recess with a pocket card printed with a simple message.

“When Republicans took control of the Senate, we promised to get the Senate working again,” the card reads. “We are keeping our promise.”

The card lists an assortment of legislation passed in the Senate, from long-term highway and education reauthorizations to the anti-human trafficking bill. Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, the chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, leads the operation that produces the materials for the August recess.

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August 11, 2015

Graham: National Security Concerns Trump Planned Parenthood

Graham said he opposes a shutdown showdown over Planned Parenthood. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Graham said he opposes a shutdown showdown over Planned Parenthood. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

GREENVILLE, S.C. — A potential President Lindsey Graham would propose defunding Planned Parenthood, but the South Carolina Republican said using a government funding crisis as leverage in an abortion debate would undermine national security.

“Let me just be clear about me and Planned Parenthood. If I were president, I would never submit a budget with one dime for Planned Parenthood,” Graham said. “I am not going, as Senator Graham, to shut the government down because of this fight. I will vote to defund Planned Parenthood, I will do everything I can to stop funding Planned Parenthood, but what Sen. [Ted] Cruz is suggesting is to shut the government down because of this dispute.”

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August 7, 2015

Ted Cruz Won’t Rule Out Shutdown Over Planned Parenthood

The Texas senator struck a different tone than his party's leader on Planned Parenthood. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Texas senator struck a different tone than his party’s leader Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. — Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mitch McConnell may be ruling out a government shutdown at the end of September, but Sen. Ted Cruz certainly is not.

“The last government shutdown occurred because Barack Obama and Harry Reid took an extreme position and they were unwilling to compromise and negotiate,” the Texas Republican said of the 2013 budget standoff. “So, I cannot give any guarantee as to whether the Obama administration will once again play partisan political games. For six-and-a-half years, that has been their pattern. So, no one would be surprised to see them go down that road again.”

Cruz was in suburban Charleston to kick off a 2016 presidential campaign bus tour that will see him hit seven states in seven days throughout the South, following Thursday night’s GOP debate in Cleveland. Full story

Cruz Calls on Schumer to Lead the Charge Against Iran Deal

Cruz called on Democrats to join Schumer in denouncing the Iran nuclear deal. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz called on Democrats to join Schumer in denouncing the Iran nuclear deal. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)




MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. — Amid a deluge of criticism from Obama administration allies for stepping forward and speaking against the international agreement with Iran regarding nuclear development, New York Sen. Charles E. Schumer is winning praise from unlikely quarters.

On Friday, Republican presidential hopeful and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz joined the list, applauding the No. 3 Democratic leader for his “bravery.” Full story

August 4, 2015

McConnell Says No Shutdowns as September Agenda Takes Shape (Video)

McConnell says there won't be any shutdowns. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

McConnell says there won’t be any shutdowns. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Democrats are warning a new shutdown showdown looms in September, even as Majority Leader Mitch McConnell reiterated there wouldn’t be any government shutdowns on his watch.

“Let me say it again: no more government shutdowns,” the Kentucky Republican said, when asked how he intended to adhere to his pledge made numerous times. “We have divided government. … At some point we’ll negotiate the way forward.”

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Hatch Calls ADA One of His Most Important Achievements


Clockwise from right, Hatch, Harkin, Hoyer and Dole commemorated the passage of ADA. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Lawmakers across the political spectrum have celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act over the past week — none more than Sen. Orrin G. Hatch.

The Utah Republican is one of the few who can offer a first-hand account of the tumultuous path the law took through Congress. Full story

July 31, 2015

Ted Cruz Defers to House Members on Bid to Boot Boehner

Cruz would not weigh in specifically on the effort to oust Boehner. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz would not weigh in specifically on the effort to oust Boehner. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Upending the “Washington cartel” of career politicians may be the theme of Sen. Ted Cruz’s campaign for the White House, but the Texas Republican is not weighing in on a bid to oust John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, from his role as speaker.

“Questions of leadership in the House are questions to be decided by Republican members of the House,” Cruz said when asked whether he would be supportive of a resolution filed by Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., to vacate the chair. (Cruz has been close to many of the House Republicans who have fought regularly with Boehner.)

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July 23, 2015

GOP Seeking Venues to Attack Planned Parenthood

Tillis (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Tillis drafted an amendment that could effectively block the VA from funding Planned Parenthood. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans want the debate over federal funding of Planned Parenthood to take place everywhere.

As expected, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has filed an amendment to the vehicle for the highway bill that would block taxpayer dollars from flowing to the organization in the aftermath of controversial videos that critics said showed the organization was engaging in improper organ harvesting after abortions.

“The continued disregard and disrespect for human life at Planned Parenthood, a partially taxpayer-funded organization, is shocking and appalling,” Paul said in a statement Wednesday.

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July 16, 2015

Senators: Congress Should Precede U.N. on Iran Nuclear Deal (Updated)

Corker wants to preserve Congress' ability to block the Iran deal. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Corker wants to preserve Congress’ ability to block the Iran nuclear deal. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 3:30 p.m. | President Barack Obama has been criticized repeatedly by his detractors for a perceived reluctance to work with Congress, and Thursday was no different.

After Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. made a visit to the Capitol to meet with a bipartisan group of senators and discuss the terms of the Iran nuclear deal, Sen. Bob Corker expressed concern that the president was going to the U.N. Security Council to lobby support before Congress votes on the deal. Full story

July 15, 2015

Cruz, Lee Promise Highway Bill Traffic Jam Over Ex-Im Bank

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cruz and Lee are ready to gum up the works. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

If senators want to revive the Export-Import Bank as part of the upcoming highway bill debate, they’re going to have to do it the hard way.

That was one key takeaway from GOP Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah at a news conference with other conservative lawmakers and members of outside groups that oppose the government-credit agency.

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