Lindsey McPherson

McCarthy ‘not concerned about any retirement’ except Hurd’s
Minority leader predicts Trump will carry more districts held by Democrats than he did in 2016

BALTIMORE — House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said the only Republican seat that will be open in 2020 due to a member of his conference retiring that he’s worried about losing is Rep. Will Hurd’s in Texas’ 23rd District. 

“That’s a tough seat. Will Hurd is an exceptional person,” the California Republican told reporters Friday morning as House Republicans kicked off the second day of their conference retreat here. 

Trump vows to campaign for more House Republicans after North Carolina wins
President delivers one-hour speech to congressional GOP at their retreat in Baltimore

BALTIMORE — President Donald Trump told House Republicans gathered here Thursday for their annual conference retreat that he plans to campaign in more of their districts to help with their 2020 races. 

“I’m going to stop at every community that I can. We’re going to make a list of 50 or so,” he said. 

McCarthy: Addressing debt would be Republicans’ top priority if they take back House
Environment, technology and privacy rights would also top agenda, McCarthy says

BALTIMORE — As House Republicans kicked off a 48-hour retreat here Thursday afternoon to plot their path back to the majority, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told reporters the GOP’s top priority if it retakes the chamber in 2020 would be to address the national debt.

“First thing we would do is make sure our debt is taken care of,” the California Republican said. “This is continuing to grow.”

Pelosi on Trump investigations: ‘We are, from a timing standpoint, where we need to be’
Speaker still refuses to clarify whether she thinks it’s appropriate to call the investigations an impeachment inquiry

Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday again declined to say whether she thinks House Democrats’ investigations into President Donald Trump are a formal impeachment inquiry, but she said the probe is proceeding on track. 

“I’m very pleased [with] the path we’re on and the progress we’ve made,” the California Democrat said. “We are, from a timing standpoint, where we need to be.”

House Republicans to discuss path back to majority at Baltimore retreat
GOP members to talk politics and policy Thursday through Saturday at their delayed annual retreat

Fresh off two crucial special election wins in North Carolina, House Republicans head to Baltimore on Thursday for their delayed annual retreat, prepared to spend some quality time discussing how they plan to win back the majority in 2020.

Some of that planning will most certainly involve policy discussions about contrasting their proposals on jobs and the economy, health care, technology, energy and the environment, and other issues with what they often refer to as the Democrats’ “socialist” ideas. But a good chunk of the gathering, which will run from Thursday afternoon through Saturday morning, will be about assessing the political landscape. 

Hoyer contradicts Judiciary Committee on impeachment inquiry

Updated 1:23 p.m. | House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer on Wednesday directly contradicted Judiciary Committee Democrats’ assertion that they’re engaged in an impeachment inquiry.

“No,” the Maryland Democrat told reporters during his weekly press briefing when asked if he thought an impeachment inquiry was underway. “I think the delineation ought to be whether or not they’re considering a resolution of impeachment.”

Democrats still not working off same playbook on impeachment
Mixed messages abound about whether Judiciary is in an impeachment inquiry and where it’s headed

House Democrats are struggling to speak with one voice about impeachment, as members returned to Washington this week with mixed messages about whether the Judiciary Committee is already engaged in an impeachment inquiry and where that investigation is headed. 

Judiciary Democrats almost uniformly agree that their panel’s expanding investigation into President Donald Trump’s alleged crimes and abuse of power is an impeachment inquiry. Any disagreement about that definition that may exist among those two dozen members will likely be brought to light Thursday as the committee marks up a resolution defining procedures for its investigation.

Biggs to replace Meadows as Freedom Caucus chairman, effective Oct. 1
Meadows, who’d planned to transition out of the chairmanship this fall, will remain on caucus board

Arizona Republican Rep. Andy Biggs will serve as the third chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, after the group of roughly three dozen hard-line conservatives elected him to take over its leadership effective Oct. 1.

The sophomore congressman will replace North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows next month — a fall leadership transition that Meadows had long been planning. Meadows has served as the group’s chairman for the past two and a half years following the two-year tenure of Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, the founding chairman.

Term limit rules targeted by Trump aren’t tipping scale on House GOP retirements
POTUS wants to discourage retirements, but life in the minority is also a factor

President Donald Trump has an idea he thinks would quell the growing list of House Republicans who say they won’t run for another term, but the president’s proposal might not get to the root of the GOP retirements.

In a tweet early Monday, Trump urged House GOP leaders to alter conference rules to allow committee chairs (and ranking members if in the minority) to hold their posts for more than six years.

How a handful of vulnerable incumbents got bills signed into law
Bipartisanship is key, according to Democrats who got bills through the Senate

House Democrats frequently complain about Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell blocking bills they’ve passed, but 30 of the 56 measures that have been signed into law so far this Congress have been theirs.

Some of those bills include bipartisan, bicameral spending agreements needed to keep the government operational or extensions of critical government programs, while others represent policy needs members have identified. 

Freshman Democrats to chairs: Follow PAYGO, get CBO scores before markups
Letter led by Rep. Sharice Davids asks House committee chairs to ensure legislation does not add to deficit

Ten moderate Democratic freshmen are sending a letter Wednesday to House committee chairs asking that their panels better adhere to the chamber’s rule for offsetting legislation that would add to the deficit. 

Back in the majority for the first time in eight years, Democrats kicked off the 116th Congress by reinstating a pay-as-you-go, or PAYGO, provision in House rules. Under the provision, legislation that would increase the deficit must be offset by spending cuts or revenue increases.

Democrats weighing new gun legislation in wake of mass shootings
CQ on Congress, episode 167

Updated 7:33 p.m. | The House Judiciary Committee had planned to return early from Congress’ summer break next week to mark up gun safety legislation. After this podcast previewing the proceedings was recorded, the committee announced it was postponing the markup until the week of Sept. 9 due to Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to hit Florida. Five of the panel members represent districts in the state. 

Will any House bills pressure Senate Republicans to respond to recent mass shootings? At a time when a majority of the country supports enhanced background checks and other measures to curb gun violence, House Democrats hope so.

Should we all just throw away our impeachment position trackers?
Tracking support for an impeachment inquiry no longer relevant since Judiciary panel claims one’s underway

ANALYSIS — Several news outlets, including CQ Roll Call, have kept tallies of the House Democrats who have called for impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump for months. It may be time to throw them out.

The media lists of Democrats who support an impeachment inquiry — counts vary slightly by news outlet — are effectively meaningless now that Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler and other senior Democrats say his panel’s investigation into Trump’s alleged misdeeds is equivalent to one.

Hoyer cautions Senate against ‘cop-out’ approach on gun safety legislation
Red flag law bill, more narrow background check expansion not enough, House majority leader says

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer is cautioning the Senate against taking up narrowly focused gun safety legislation instead of a more comprehensive House-passed bill to expand background checks on gun purchases. 

In the weeks following three recent deadly mass shootings, House Democrats have issued a steady drumbeat of calls for the Senate to return early from its summer recess to consider HR 8, which the House passed in February. The bill would expand background checks conducted for in-store firearm purchases to include online and gun show sales. 

Cummings says he’d like to invite Trump to Baltimore but can’t reach him
Maryland Democrat addresses president’s recent attacks on his home city

Maryland Rep. Elijah E. Cummings said Wednesday that he’d like President Donald Trump, who recently attacked him and his hometown of Baltimore, to visit his district, but he’s been unable to reach Trump to personally invite him.

“Ah God, I want him to come,” the Democratic congressman said at a Wednesday luncheon at the National Press Club, as he addressed Trump’s recent tweetstorm disparaging Baltimore.

Gun safety theatrics could come to Congress during Tuesday pro forma sessions
Neither House nor Senate expected to return any time soon

Updated 4:45 p.m. | Democratic lawmakers itching for action on gun safety legislation will get their first chances to make some noise on Tuesday.

That’s when the House and Senate are scheduled to begin holding pro forma sessions, with no legislative business expected in either chamber until a full week after Labor Day in September. However, there’s a long history of members of Congress using the brief moments when the floors of the two chambers open for business during the August recess to engage in a bit of theater.

‘Baltimore, my Baltimore’: Pelosi rejects Trump attacks on her hometown
Speaker attacks Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner as ‘slumlord’ over conditions at his Baltimore rental properties

“Baltimore, my Baltimore,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi proclaimed with joy. 

The California Democrat was walking through the Capitol on Thursday after a bill enrollment ceremony for a bipartisan budget deal that had just passed the Senate (the House passed it the week prior) when reporters asked her about President Donald Trump’s persistent attacks on her hometown of Baltimore and one of its veteran representatives, Maryland Democrat Elijah E. Cummings

A new flood of Democrats call for impeachment proceedings, but does it matter?
21 Democrats have joined push for formal proceedings since Mueller’s testimony

Updated 11:11 a.m. | The trickle of Democrats calling for an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump has turned into a flood, with 21 new members joining the push since former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III testified before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees on July 24. 

The total number of House Democrats now supporting an impeachment inquiry is 118, half of their 235-member caucus. 

Texas Rep. Conaway, top Republican on Agriculture panel, not seeking reelection
Eight-term congressman to leave open seat in deep red district

Texas Republican Rep. K. Michael Conaway, ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee, is planning to retire at the end of his current term, according to GOP sources. 

Conaway’s decision not to seek reelection in 2020, which he is not expected to formally announce until a press conference Wednesday, leaves an open seat in the deep red 11th District, a part of West central Texas that President Donald Trump won by 59 points in 2016.