Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 4, 2015

September 3, 2015

White House Wants Currency Enforcement Bill (Video)

The White House called Thursday for Congress to send President Barack Obama a currency enforcement bill — an issue that has added urgency given the roiling of financial markets after China devalued the yuan.

Asked about China’s recent devaluation, Press Secretary Josh Earnest called on Congress to reconcile differences between House- and Senate-passed currency bills. Full story

Chris Christie Slams ‘Done Nothing’ Republican Congress

Christie said the GOP Congress has "done nothing." (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Christie said the GOP Congress has “done nothing.” (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie — languishing in the polls amid the Donald Trump surge — trained his fire on the Republican Congress Wednesday, saying they had “done nothing” this year.

In an appearance on conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt’s program, Christie took aim at Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and sought to tar the Republican senators running for office with the same d0-nothing brush. Full story

Debbie Wasserman Schultz ‘Not Afraid to Stand Alone’ on Iran Deal

Wasserman Schultz says she will make her decision on the Iran deal with her "Jewish heart." (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Wasserman Schultz says she will make her decision on the Iran deal with her “Jewish heart.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Under siege on multiple fronts and with Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. at her side, Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz declared Thursday she’s not afraid to stand alone on the Iran deal.

The Florida Democrat faces calls for her resignation from her perch atop the DNC from party activists who worry the relatively skimpy debate schedule could be seen tilting the scales for front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton and for her potential apostasy when it comes to supporting President Barack Obama’s Iran deal — what amounts to his signature foreign policy achievement and one backed by all of the Democrats running for president. Full story

By Steven Dennis Posted at 10:46 a.m.
Foreign Policy, Iran

September 2, 2015

Takeaways From Obama’s Big Iran Deal Win

Obama Trillions of Dollars Wealth Median wealth

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

With Sen. Barbara Mikulski providing the deciding vote, President Barack Obama has won the fight over his Iran deal — sealing for now a key legacy item and preventing what would have been a catastrophic defeat for his presidency. Here are some key takeaways:

1. AIPAC is one of Washington’s most powerful lobbying groups, but it’s no match for a determined Obama and the broader progressive movement inside the Democratic Party base, outside some strongholds in New York, Florida and a few other pockets. Full story

By Steven Dennis Posted at 11:07 a.m.

September 1, 2015

Ex-Hill Intern Makes Facebook Fortune, Joins White House

A 24-year-old former Capitol Hill intern who has already struck it rich with an app bought by Facebook has joined the White House as the first ever “Director of Product.”

Josh Miller says in a blog post he interned with a senator in 2009, before dropping out of Princeton to co-found Branch, a conversation app bought by Facebook for a reported $15 million in 2012. Full story

Obama’s Alaska Climate Action Call Skips Over Congress

Obama departs the White House for Alaska on Monday. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Obama departs the White House for Alaska on Monday. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that President Barack Obama didn’t bother mentioning Congress when he made his remarks on climate change in Alaska late Monday. Republican leaders, after all, uniformly vilify his efforts to clamp down on carbon emissions.

Obama’s speech was aimed at a broader audience than Capitol Hill — intended as a rallying cry for a global agreement later this year in Paris — and a shot to the doubters and deniers.

Full story

By Steven Dennis Posted at 12:04 p.m.
Climate Change

August 31, 2015

Alaska Visit, Denali Naming Highlights Obama’s Bucket List

President Barack Obama’s renaming of Mount McKinley to Denali has raised the hackles of Speaker John A. Boehner, but the rest of his Alaska trip may rile the GOP even more as the president highlights the effects of climate change and his go-it-alone plans to tackle it.

That’s part of the freedom Obama is enjoying in his last year and a half in office. He can cross off more items on his bucket list, doesn’t have to face the voters again and increasingly doesn’t worry about carping from the congressional peanut gallery. Full story

August 30, 2015

Boehner’s Latest Fight With Obama? Renaming Mount McKinley

(Mandel Ngan/AFP File Photo)

Ohio lawmakers like Boehner have criticized the name change to Denali. (Mandel Ngan/AFP File Photo)

For many in the state of Alaska, Sunday was a day for rejoicing. But for Ohioans such as Speaker John A. Boehner, that was not the case.

The White House revealed Sunday President Barack Obama would be announcing the renaming of the mountain long known as Mount McKinley in honor of President William McKinley, who was assassinated in 1901. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell formally signed an order regarding the designation on Friday.

Full story

August 28, 2015

White House Slams ‘Pro-War Rally’ Featuring Trump, Cruz (Video)

UNITED STATES - JUNE 23: Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, talks with reporters after voting against cloture on the Trade Promotion Authority bill, June 23, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz plans an anti-Iran nuclear deal rally next month. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest says the event Republican presidential hopefuls Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and businessman Donald Trump plan to attend outside the Capitol next month is “pro-war.”

Earnest said the gathering in opposition to the international nuclear agreement with Iran will be “a big pro-war rally on the steps of the U.S. Capitol.”

Full story

August 27, 2015

Obama to Highlight Post-Katrina Progress in New Orleans

Obama Trillions of Dollars Wealth Median wealth

Obama plans to praise the resiliency of New Orleans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“What started out as a natural disaster became a manmade one — a failure of government to look out for its own citizens.”

That’s how President Barack Obama plans to sum up the tragedy that took place when Hurricane Katrina hit along the Gulf Coast a decade ago, devastation that became part of the public consciousness, especially in New Orleans where he will be speaking.

Full story

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