Friday, May 30, 2008

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for FRIDAY, MAY 30, 2008 – 1:37 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Senate Prepares to Launch Global Warming Debate
  • Democratic Congress Poised to Adopt Its Budget
  • House Judiciary Musters Backing From Former Members
  • Political Trivia for May 30
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Today in Washington

The House reconvenes June 3 at 2 p.m. to consider minor bills under suspension of the rules.

The Senate reconvenes June 2 at 2 p.m. to debate a motion to proceed to consideration of legislation to combat global warming.

The President has no public events scheduled.

In Washington, the annual Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee holds its finals, 8 p.m., Grand Hyatt Hotel, 1000 H St. N.W.

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Top Stories

Senate Prepares to Launch Global Warming Debate

A long-awaited congressional debate on climate change is expected to begin next week in the Senate, which is poised to consider a sweeping bill to combat global warming.  [Read More]

Democratic Congress Poised to Adopt Its Budget

Congress is likely to adopt its fiscal 2009 budget resolution next week, although the blueprint is more an election-year exercise in political positioning than a policy outline.  [Read More]

House Judiciary Musters Backing From Former Members

A bipartisan group of current and former lawmakers has sided with the House Judiciary Committee in its legal bid to enforce subpoenas against White House Chief of Staff Joshua B. Bolten and former White House counsel Harriet Miers.  [Read More]

Political Trivia for May 30

When did South Dakota last elect an all-Republican congressional delegation?  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

The Rocky Mountain News reports that Democrat Jared Polis will spend an additional $2.1 million of his own money in his campaign for Colorado’s 2nd District seat. The Boulder-based entrepreneur already has spent about $1.5 million personally on the race to succeed Democratic Rep. Mark Udall, who is running for the Senate. The newspaper reported that the campaigns of Polis’s two rivals for the Democratic nomination — former state Senate President Joan Fitz-Gerald and conservationist Will Shafroth — each suggested that Polis’s self-financing will backfire with middle-class voters. The seat is expected to remain in Democratic hands; Udall got 68 percent of the vote in 2006.

According to the Poughkeepsie Journal, “Republicans from the five counties that make up the 19th Congressional District have picked political newcomer Kieran Lalor, 32, of Peekskill to challenge Democratic incumbent John Hall in November.” Hall, a freshman, won the New York seat with 51 percent of the vote in 2006 and the national GOP believes it can claim the seat in November. The newspaper reports that Lalor will face a primary challenge from George Oros, the minority leader of the Westchester County Legislature. Another potential challenger, former Rep. Joseph DioGuardi, “had not formally announced his candidacy and finished a distant third” in the GOP county-level vote, but said he would “support the candidate backed by the party.”

The Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette reports that Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels is recycling an idea from his successful 2004 campaign — a TV reality show that broadcasts on local stations in Indiana. “Daniels used the 30-minute episodes in 2004 to showcase his travels around the state, meeting with Hoosiers and talking about what he would do if elected,” according to the newspaper. The show, called “RV-1 On the Road with Mitch Daniels,” is not scripted. This year’s first episode looks back to election night in 2004, when he defeated Democrat Joseph Kernan. In November, Daniels will face the winner of a Democratic primary between Jill Long Thompson, who was a U.S. House member from 1989-95, and architect Jim Schellinger.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
TEXAS: Court Ruling to Reunite Sect Children, Parents
THE NATION: Soaring Ridership, Fuel Costs Straining Transit Agencies
PHILADELPHIA: City, Housing Authority to Provide Homeless Housing
WASHINGTON, D.C.: Ex-Tax Office Manager's Brother Pleads Guilty

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for THURSDAY, MAY 29, 2008 – 1:34 P.M.

In This Issue

  • New Members Steered to House Financial Services Panel
  • Political Trivia for May 29
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Today in Washington

The House  is not in session; reconvenes June 3 at 2 p.m.

The Senate reconvenes for legislative business June 2 at 2 p.m.

The President meets with members of the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Salt Lake City; attends a Nick Jordan for Congress and Kansas GOP fundraising reception in Bucyrus, Kan., and then returns to Washington.

In Washington, Patrick Merloe of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs and Elizabeth Dugan of the International Republican Institute hold a briefing for foreign media only promoting democracy around the world. 3:30 p.m., National Press Building, 529 14th St N.W.

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Top Stories

New Members Steered to House Financial Services Panel

Win a House special election and join the Financial Services Committee. At least that’s been the theme for Democrats this year.  [Read More]

Political Trivia for May 29

When did Montana last vote Democratic for president?  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

The Raleigh News and Observer reports that Sen. Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C., “began her general election TV advertising campaign Wednesday, stressing an issue she thinks will be a strength — a crackdown on illegal immigrants — and addressing a potential weakness — her image as a creature of Washington.” Dole’s move comes as several statewide public opinion polls show her “in a close race with her Democratic challenger, state Sen. Kay Hagan of Greensboro.” Dole has a huge fundraising edge over Hagan; she reported $3.1 million cash on hand as of mid-April, compared with $317,311 for Hagan. But the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee “has sent out two fundraising letters on behalf of Hagan in recent weeks.”

The New York Daily News reports that radio talk show host and Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa said Wednesday that he would be willing to run for the Staten Island seat of disrgraced Republican Rep. Vito J. Fossella, if no one else steps forward. “I can be the fail-safe guy,” Sliwa told the newspaper a day after he made his willingness clear in a letter to local GOP officials. The borough’s Democratic Committee, meanwhile, endorsed City Councilman Michael McMahon on Wednesday. Fossella announced his retirement last week in the wake of his arrest on a misdemeanor charge of driving while intoxicated and the resulting acknowledgement that he has a daughter from an extramarital affair.

According to the Fairmount Sentinel, state Sen. Dick Day officially kicked off his campaign on Wednesday for the Republican nomination for Minnesota’s 1st District seat in the House. Physician Brian Davis was endorsed by the local GOP in March, but Day chose to mount a challenge in the Sept. 9 primary, anyway. “Day is seeking to make a transition from state to federal politics after serving 18 years in the state Senate,” including nine years as minority leader, the newspaper reports. Incumbent Democrat Tim Walz is seeking re-election after unseating six-term Republican Rep. Gil Gutknecht in 2006.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
NEW YORK STATE: State to Recognize Gay Marriages Peformed Elsewhere
THE NATION: Study: Western Cities Have Lower Carbon Emissions
FARMERS BRANCH, Texas: Judge Strikes Down Immigrant-Rental Ban
MIAMI: Police Chief Settles Ethics Case over Free SUV
TYSONS CORNER, Va.: Tysons Corner Transformation Seen as Model

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for WEDNESDAY, MAY 28, 2008 – 1:50 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Lawmakers Praise U.S. Challenge To Europe’s High-Tech Tariffs
  • Race for Craig’s Seat Becomes a Rematch of Sorts; Sali Defeats GOP Foe
  • Political Trivia for May 28
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Today in Washington

The House  is not in session; reconvenes June 3 at 2 p.m.

The Senate reconvenes for legislative business June 2 at 2 p.m.

The President delivers the commencement address at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo.; attends a pair of McCain for President and Republican National Committee fundraising receptions in Salt Lake City.

In Washington, Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao addresses the 23rd annual CelebrAsian national Asian American Business Opportunity Conference gala. 8 p.m., Washington Hilton, 1919 Connecticut Ave. N.W.

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Top Stories

Lawmakers Praise U.S. Challenge To Europe’s High-Tech Tariffs

House Ways and Means leaders Wednesday applauded U.S. Trade Representative Susan C. Schwab’s announcement that the United States has asked the World Trade Organization to settle a dispute with the European Union over tariffs on certain high-tech products.  [Read More]

Race for Craig’s Seat Becomes a Rematch of Sorts; Sali Defeats GOP Foe

There were no surprises Tuesday in the primary election for nominees to replace Sen. Larry E. Craig, R-Idaho, who announced his retirement after revelations that he had been arrested in a Minneapolis airport bathroom.  [Read More]

Political Trivia for May 28

When were California’s congressional primaries held in 2004?  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

According to the Business Courier of Cincinnati, a recent poll shows Democratic challenger Bruce Lunsford with a lead of 5 percentage points over Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. “The poll was conducted just two days after Lunsford won the Democratic nomination” on May 20, according to the newspaper. In the telephone survey by Rasmussen Reports, 49 percent of respondents said they would vote for Lunsford, and 44 percent chose McConnell, who is running for a fifth term. Lunsford, a wealthy founder of a nursing home chain, is expected to emphasize McConnell’s ties to the Bush administration. McConnell “is viewed favorably by 52 percent of the state’s voters, according to the pollster, and unfavorably by 42 percent,” the newspaper wrote.

The Boston Globe reports that Jim Ogonowski, the Republican leadership’s choice to challenge Sen. John F. Kerry, D-Mass., is “82 signatures short of qualifying for the GOP primary ballot, according to the state’s central voter registry.” Local election clerks were legally required to finish their certifications on Tuesday. “Ogonowski’s campaign aides contend there are enough certified signatures at various town offices around the state not filed yet on the computerized registry to put him across the 10,000 threshold,” the newspaper reports. But even if they find another 82 names, election specialists say Ogonowski “will not have the needed cushion of extra signatures to insulate himself from legal challenges,” the paper wrote. Former Republican Govs. Mitt Romney and Paul Cellucci are among Ogonowski’s supporters.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
DETROIT: Mayor Vetoes Measure to Oust Him
BOSTON: Mayor Suspends Public Works Chief
ILLINOIS: Imprisoned Governor Seeks Presidential Clemency
THE NATION: Study Finds Wide Variance in Child Health Care
MINNESOTA: Attorney General Fires Accuser

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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for TUESDAY, MAY 27, 2008 – 1:51 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Alaska’s Young Faces Tough Primary Challenge
  • Idaho’s 1st District Primary Not as Tough for Rep. Sali This Time
  • Committee Leaders Pleased With Month of Hearings on Resiliency
  • Political Trivia for May 27
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Today in Washington

The House  is not in session; reconvenes June 3 at 2 p.m.

The Senate meets in a pro forma session; reconvenes for legislative business June 2 at 2 p.m.

The President Attends a White for Congress and New Mexico Victory Luncheon in Albuquerque, N.M.; visits Silverado Cable Co. in Mesa, Ariz.; attends McCain for President and Republican National Committee fundraiser in Phoenix, Ariz.

In Washington, Nobel Peace Laureate and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel delivers the Yitzhak Rabin Memorial Lecture on “Peace and War in the Jewish Tradition,” with Leon Wieseltier, literary editor of the New Republic. 7 p.m., 6th & I Historic Synagogue, 600 I Street, NW.

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Top Stories

Alaska’s Young Faces Tough Primary Challenge

Alaska Republican Rep. Don Young faces a strong GOP primary challenge amid concerns that Democrats might be able to capture the seat Nov. 4.  [Read More]

Idaho’s 1st District Primary Not as Tough for Rep. Sali This Time

Freshman Rep. Bill Sali, R-Idaho, has a challenger in Tuesday’s primary for his 1st District seat, but the competition is nowhere near the level he faced two years ago.  [Read More]

Committee Leaders Pleased With Month of Hearings on Resiliency

At the close of a month’s worth of hearings focusing on America’s ability to bounce back from a disaster or terrorist attack, leaders of the House Homeland Security Committee says it was time well spent.  [Read More]

Political Trivia for May 27

How much did Alaskans receive from the state’s oil “permanent fund” in 2007?  [Read More]

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
CALIFORNIA: In Face of Deficit, State Payroll Soaring
NEW YORK STATE: Governor to Have More Eye Surgery
DETROIT: City at Crossroads over Incinerator
MARICOPA COUNTY, Ariz.: Mosquitos Following Foreclosures
WASHINGTON, D.C., Region: Ridership Surge Could Overwhelm Transit

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Political Clippings

The Billings Gazette reports that Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., “has a huge lead over at least two potential Republican challengers, who are widely unknown to the public, a Gazette State Poll shows.” Baucus, seeking his sixth Senate term, leads GOP state Rep. Michael Lange of Billings by 65 percent to 26 percent, and holds a 61 percent to 26 percent edge over Kirk Bushman, an industrial-facilities designer from Billings, Baucus leads 61 percent to 26 percent. Of the five Republican U.S. Senate candidates, Lange is probably the best-known among the public, but 52 percent of those polled did not recognize him.” The GOP primary is June 3.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Republican primary contenders in California’s open 4th District have been ripping apart “their own party for plundering the treasury, caving in to environmentalists and opening the borders. The most venomous attacks came from state Sen. Tom McClintock of Thousand Oaks, who has ventured north to run on his statewide reputation as a ramrod conservative. McClintock’s swipes were intended to yoke top rival Doug Ose, a former Republican congressman from Sacramento, to the scorn voters hold for Washington.” The winner of the June 3 GOP primary is expected to face Democrat Charlie Brown, who narrowly lost in 2006 to GOP Rep. John T. Doolittle, who is retiring this year.

The Rocky Mountain News reports that Colorado Republican Party Chairman Dick Wadhams is trying to make an issue of Democratic Rep. Mark Udall’s zip code. Five years ago, Udall “moved six miles and 11 minutes down the road,” from Boulder to Eldorado Springs. And that’s his home now, according to the Boulder County Assessor’s Office and the Rocky Mountain Fire Protection District. But Wadhams, who’s the campaign manager for former GOP Rep. Bob Schaffer, Udall’s opponent in the U.S. Senate race this year, “never misses a chance to attach ‘Boulder liberal’ to Udall’s name.” He notes that Udall’s 80303 ZIP code is Boulder, and accuses Udall of “lying and misrepresenting his residency.” However, Eldorado Springs postmaster Melba Yeck “lives near the Udalls and, like them, has a Boulder mailing address and an 80303 ZIP code. “

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This Week in Health Policy on the Hill

Health on the Hill with kaisernetwork.org and CQ are weekly audio updates from CQ reporters highlighting the latest health policy developments on Capitol Hill. A podcast of the report is also available.
MEDICARE: Senate Democrats are moving ahead with their own Medicare bill.
MEDICAID: War supplemental spending bill includes moratorium on new Medicaid regulations.
HEALTH REFORM: Senate Finance Committee plans health care summit for June.| Read the online report | Health on the Hill audio links

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