Friday, May 14, 2010

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Friday, May 14, 2010

In This Issue

  • President Calls for 'Whatever Is Necessary' To Stop Oil Spill
  • Republicans, Democrats Spar Over Tardy Budget Resolution
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Today in Washington

The House has no votes expected.

The Senate continues work on the financial regulatory overhaul. No votes are expected.

The President honors the TOP COPS award recipients in a ceremony; meets with members of his Cabinet and other administration officials to discuss the ongoing efforts to stop the Gulf of Mexico oil spill; makes a statement to the press about the meeting.

In Washington, Friends of the National Zoo hosts the 16th annual Guppy Gala fundraiser, featuring family-friendly activities including talks with veterinarians, stuffed animal "checkups," rock climbing and live entertainment. 6 p.m., National Zoo

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Top Stories

President Calls for 'Whatever Is Necessary' To Stop Oil Spill

President Obama on Friday urged Congress to take "prompt action" on his administration's proposed legislative response to the Gulf Coast oil spill, saying residents of the region "deserve nothing less than for us to stand up and do whatever is necessary to stop this spill, prevent further damage, and compensate all those who've been harmed already." [Read More]

Republicans, Democrats Spar Over Tardy Budget Resolution

House Republicans say Democrats have acknowledged there will not be a budget resolution this year, while Democrats maintain that talks are continuing and there is still a possibility they will be able to agree on a budget. [Read More]

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CQ Politics: The Eye

Hello? Any Democrats Here? The Democratic Party has so atrophied in Wyoming that a former state party chairman says he'll be asking for a Republican ballot this year, reports the Casper Tribune.

In Idaho, Ward Outraises Labrador, but Minnick Tops Both: In Idaho's 1st District, Republican Vaughn Ward is significantly outspending primary opponent Raul Labrador. But the winner of their May 25 primary will begin the general election race at a big fundraising disadvantage to Democratic Rep. Walt Minnick.

Look Out Lisa Murkowski, Todd Palin's Helping Your Rival: Is the former "first dude" of Alaska influential in the state's politics? Sen. Lisa Murkowski is about to find out.

The CQ Politics staff reports the latest news in House, Senate and governors' races in The Eye.

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

CQ Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Thursday, May 13, 2010 2:30 p.m.

In This Issue

  • Kagan's Old Critique of Confirmation Process Puts Her on Spot Now
  • West Coast Democrats Urge Reinstatement of Offshore Oil Drilling Ban
  • Senate Democrats Seek Route to Passage of Financial Regulatory Bill
  • Senate Finance Chairman Finds Nominee's Testimony 'Incredible'
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Today in Washington

The House completes consideration of legislation authorizing $85.6 billion over five years for science and technology research initiatives and programs.

The Senate continues to debate amendments to a bill to overhaul financial regulations.

The President meets in Buffalo, N.Y., with family members of the victims of Continental Connection Flight 3407, which crashed Feb. 12, 2009, on approach to Buffalo Niagara International Airport; tours facilities of Industrial Support Inc., a manufacturing services company and makes remarks; addresses a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee fundraising dinner in New York City before returning to Washington.

In Washington, The Cato Institute presents the Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty to Akbar Ganji, an exiled Iranian writer and journalist who spent six years in a Tehran prison for advocating a secular democracy and exposing government involvement in the assassination of individuals who opposed Iran's theocratic regime. The cash prize of $500,000 is presented every other year to an individual who has made a significant contribution to advance human freedom. 6:30 p.m., Hilton Washington Hotel, 1919 Connecticut Ave N.W.

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Top Stories

Kagan's Old Critique of Confirmation Process Puts Her on Spot Now

Trailed by a gaggle of reporters and photographers Thursday on her second day of courtesy visits to senators, Kagan looked uncomfortable as Susan Collins , R-Maine, said that she had read Kagan's 1995 Chicago Law Review book review about the judicial confirmation process. [Read More]

West Coast Democrats Urge Reinstatement of Offshore Oil Drilling Ban

West Coast Democrats are seizing on the Gulf Coast oil spill to propose legislation that would reinstate a drilling ban off the Pacific coast. [Read More]

Senate Democrats Seek Route to Passage of Financial Regulatory Bill

Senate Democrats huddled at midday Thursday to discuss when and how to try to limit debate and move toward passage of the financial regulatory overhaul the Senate has been working on for two weeks. [Read More]

Senate Finance Chairman Finds Nominee's Testimony 'Incredible'

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus , D-Mont., said Thursday that he had trouble believing the head of Customs and Border Protection did not realize he had to complete employment-verification forms for 10 of his domestic workers. [Read More]
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CQ Politics: The Eye

Being 'Target for Everybody' Takes Toll on Nevada's Lowden: In Nevada's Senate Republican primary, former state GOP Chairwoman Sue Lowden now leads the Republican field by just 5 points, with 30 percent, followed at 25 percent by Sharron Angle, who's supported by Tea Party Express and "Joe the Plumber." Businessman Daniel Tarkanian registered 22 percent support. "Lowden's loss has been Angle's gain," Mason-Dixon pollster Brad Coker told the Las Vegas Review-Journal."Lowden has been the anointed front-runner for a couple of months, which made her a target for everybody."

Former State Legislator Won't Challenge Lassa For Obey's Seat: Some good news for Wisconsin state Sen. Julie Lassa, the Democratic Party's choice for the seat of retiring Democratic Rep. David Obey: Former state Sen. Kevin Shibilski has decided against challenging her in the September primary.

The CQ Politics staff reports the latest news in House, Senate and governors' races in The Eye.

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Wednesday, May 12, 2010

In This Issue

  • White House Asks Congress To Lift Cap on Oil Spill Liability
  • Kagan Makes Rounds on Capitol Hill as GOP Leader Poses Questions
  • Senates Votes To Toughen Standards for Home Loans
  • Congress Renews Satellite TV Authorization
  • House OKs Maximum Pell Grants for Children of Deceased First Responders
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Today in Washington

The House considers a five-year extension of the satellite TV retransmission law and legislation authorizing $85.6 billion over five years for science and technology research initiatives and programs.

The Senate continues to debate amendments to a bill to overhaul financial regulations.

The President meets with advisers; meets with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and holds joint news conference with him.

In Washington, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights holds its annual awards dinner, honoring Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., Asian American Justice Center President and Executive Director Karen Narasaki, and The Atlantic Philanthropies President and CEO Gara LaMarche. 7 p.m., Hilton Washington and Towers, 1919 Connecticut Ave. N.W.

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Top Stories

White House Asks Congress To Lift Cap on Oil Spill Liability

The White House asked Congress Wednesday to lift liability caps on oil companies, increase the excise tax that finances cleanups and provide $118 million in emergency spending to help deal with the ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. [Read More]

Kagan Makes Rounds on Capitol Hill as GOP Leader Poses Questions

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan remained tight-lipped Wednesday as she moved through a series of private meetings with key senators, part of the traditional run-up to her confirmation hearings. [Read More]

Senates Votes To Toughen Standards for Home Loans

The Senate voted Wednesday to slap new restrictions on the mortgage industry, but senators stopped short of requiring almost all home loans to have down payments. [Read More]

Congress Renews Satellite TV Authorization

Satellite television viewers can rest easy. They won't see a cutoff of their favorite broadcast programming anytime soon. [Read More]

House OKs Maximum Pell Grants for Children of Deceased First Responders

The House passed legislation Wednesday to expand higher education assistance to the children of fallen first responders. [Read More]

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CQ Politics: The Eye

Johnson Files For Feingold Challenge: Republican businessman Ron Johnson has done everything to ready a campaign against Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin -- except make a formal announcement. Johnson on Monday filed a statement of candidacy and organized a campaign committee, according to paperwork on file in the Senate's public records office. He's expected to announce his campaign ahead of the state GOP convention May 21-23. The race already includes real estate developer Terrence Wall, small businessman Dave Westlake and Dick Leinenkugel, a former brewing company executive.

Lots of Undecided Republicans In Idaho's 1st District: There's no runaway favorite for the May 25 Republican nomination in Idaho's 1st district, and Democratic Rep. Walt Minnick would begin the general election as the favorite, according to a survey conducted May 5-8 by the Idaho-based Greg Smith and Associates. Of likely GOP primary voters surveyed, 34 percent chose Vaughn Ward, a former Senate aide and CIA employee, and 16 percent preferred state Rep. Raul Labrador. That meant that half of Republican respondents were undecided, didn't know who they'd back, refused to answer or chose some other candidate.

The CQ Politics staff reports the latest news in House, Senate and governors' races in The Eye.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Tuesday, May 11, 2010

In This Issue

  • Senators Hear a Cascade of Blame for Oil Rig Explosion
  • Interior Secretary To Separate Offshore Oil Safety, Royalty Collections
  • Judiciary Republicans See No Early Obstacles to Kagan
  • Senate OKs Review of Fed's Bailout Actions But Rejects Audits of Monetary Policy
  • House Leaders Want Senate to Vote First on War Funding Bill
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Today in Washington

The House votes on a number of commemorative resolutions.

The Senate continues to debate amendments to a bill to overhaul financial regulations.

The President meets with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Karl Eikenberry, U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan; meets with Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt.; meets with Army Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates.

In Washington, the Cato Institute hosts a forum on "Europe's Economic Crisis and the Future of the Euro," with Simeon Djankov, Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister, Bulgaria; Steve Hanke, Cato; Ian Vasquez, Cato. 4:30 p.m., Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Ave. N.W.

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Top Stories

Senators Hear a Cascade of Blame for Oil Rig Explosion

Senators showed little patience Tuesday for attempts to shift blame by executives of the three companies involved in operating the Gulf of Mexico oil drilling rig that exploded on April 20. [Read More]

Interior Secretary To Separate Offshore Oil Safety, Royalty Collections

As Senate hearings on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill kicked off Tuesday, the Obama administration moved to restructure the troubled agency charged with overseeing offshore drilling. [Read More]

Judiciary Republicans See No Early Obstacles to Kagan

Despite some concerns about the record of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee show little inclination to promote a filibuster against her. [Read More]

Senate OKs Review of Fed's Bailout Actions But Rejects Audits of Monetary Policy

A proposal to force the Federal Reserve to divulge details about its emergency lending activities since 2007 won Senate approval Tuesday, but an attempt to go beyond that and to allow audits of the central bank's monetary policy deliberations was rejected. [Read More]

House Leaders Want Senate to Vote First on War Funding Bill

House leaders would like the Senate to vote on the pending war funding request before the House with hopes that it could be cleared by Congress before the Memorial Day recess, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, D-Md., said Tuesday. [Read More]

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CQ Politics: The Eye

Would You Pay $500 To meet Conan O'Brien?: Freshman Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has clearly learned the ways of Washington: Never stop fundraising, use the rules to maximize your fundraising flexibility, and if you have friends in Hollywood, see if they'll help you with fundraising. Eric Roper of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that "Franken MVPs," joint fundraising committee, is throwing a $500-a-head-and-up dinner and reception in Minneapolis next week featuring Conan O'Brien.

McConnell Didn't Support Him, So Why Commit To McConnell?: If Rand Paul becomes the next senator from Kentucky, one of the first decisions he'll have to make is whether to support homestater Mitch McConnell for another round as Senate Republican leader. Seeing as McConnell's backing Trey Grayson against Paul in the primary, it was a natural point to bring up during last night's debate. Here's Paul's answer: "I'd have to know who the opponent is and make a decision at that time."

DuHaime Tapped to Run NRSC Independent Expenditure Effort: Veteran GOP strategist Mike DuHaime will manage the National Republican Senatorial Committee's independent expenditure arm for the 2010 cycle. DuHaime served on the successful 2009 campaign of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) and previously held posts with the Republican National Committee and the presidential campaigns of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Sen. John McCain. DuHaime was regional political director for President George W. Bush's 2004 re-election campaign.

The CQ Politics staff reports the latest news in House, Senate and governors' races in The Eye.

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Monday, May 10, 2010

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com

Midday Update for Monday, May 10, 2010

In This Issue

  • Senate Republicans Target Kagan's Lack of Judicial Experience
  • Student of Confirmations Now Faces the Process Herself
  • Lack of Paper Trail Could Cut Both Ways for Kagan
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Today in Washington

The House is not in session.

The Senate considers amendments to legislation to overhaul federal regulation of the financial system.

The President announces selection of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to succeed retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens; meets with the Intelligence Advisory Board; meets with advisers and reviews BP oil spill status; meets separately with Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and Energy Secretary Steven Chu.

In Washington, the Alliance to Save Energy hosts the 2010 Energy Efficiency Global Forum & Exposition. Washington Convention Center, Mount Vernon Square N.W.

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Top Stories

Senate Republicans Target Kagan's Lack of Judicial Experience

Senate Republicans swiftly zeroed in on Solicitor General Elena Kagan's lack of judicial experience as they vowed Monday to subject her Supreme Court nomination to a thorough review. [Read More]

Student of Confirmations Now Faces the Process Herself

Elena Kagan is no stranger to judicial confirmations, and her acerbic critique of the process surely will be thrown back at her now that she's been nominated to the Supreme Court. [Read More]

Lack of Paper Trail Could Cut Both Ways for Kagan

President Obama's nomination of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court breaks a mold in which every justice in decades has been a federal appellate judge at the time of his or her selection. [Read More]

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CQ Politics: The Eye

DCCC Pulling Out of Hawaii Special Election: The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced Monday morning that it will no longer invest resources in the May 22 special election in Hawaii's 1st District, effectively ceding the race to Republicans and likely setting the party up for what could be its first special election loss of the cycle. The presence of two Democrats -- state Senate President Colleen Hanabusa and former Rep. Ed Case -- has split the party's vote in the free-for-all special election.

Rival's Poll Finds Chet Edwards Down By 12: A Republican poll finds Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Texas, trailing by 12 points, and pollster Wes Anderson tells the Rothenberg Political Report that Edwards' strategy for staying in office amounts to "spitting into a hurricane." Rothenberg reports that the GOP poll has Republican challenger Bill Flores leading Edwards 53 percent to 41 percent. Edwards said he will make the election about the differences between him and his challenger and not about the entire Democratic Party.

One Democrat Drops Out Of Michigan Governor's Race: State Rep. Alma Wheeler Smith today gave up on trying to become Michigan's next governor. The Detroit News reports that this "likely tilts in favor of Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero." Democrats will now have two choices for their nominee: Bernero or state House Speaker Andy Dillon.

The CQ Politics staff reports the latest news in House, Senate and governors' races in The Eye.

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