california

California Democrats brand attack by Duncan Hunter campaign ‘racist’
Republican renewed effort to tar challenger Campa-Najjar as ‘national security threat’

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., faces condemnation from two Democratic members of the California delegation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A California lawmaker ripped Rep. Duncan Hunter for relying on a “racist” campaign strategy by repeatedly describing his challenger, who has Palestinian heritage, as a “national security threat.”

Democrat Rep. Mike Levin called on the Hunter campaign to stop relying on anti-Muslim conspiracy theories to undercut his challenger in the 2020 race, Ammar Campa-Najjar.

Democrats worry Trump will replace Nielsen with an immigration hard-liner
White House aides struggle to clearly explain what president wants from replacement

Kirstjen Nielsen is on her way out as Homeland Security secretary. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic lawmakers are concerned Donald Trump will replace outgoing Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen with an immigration hard-liner, but the White House has yet to clearly explain what the president wants her successor to do differently.

Nielsen’s coming departure will only complicate the Senate calendar, adding another senior administration position the chamber might have to process in coming weeks or months. Senators on the relevant oversight panels will be taken away from other work — such as annual spending bills — to focus on grilling nominees.

Trump’s double backtrack ‘probably won’t matter very much’
Teflon president not likely to pay any political price for health care, border retreats

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., as Sens. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., John Thune, R-S. Dak., Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., look on at the Capitol on Jan. 9. His recent moves have irked his own party. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS — Donald Trump irked even his fellow Republicans last week with his health care and border closure pushes, only to back off both, capping one of the most turbulent weeks of his chaotic presidency. But it’s unlikely to hinder his re-election fight.

Eager to hit the campaign trail with a reprise of many of the same themes that fueled his 2016 bid, Trump caught his party off guard by trying once again to repeal and replace the entire Obama-era health care law, before delaying any vote until after Election Day 2020. At the same time, he threatened for days to shutter ports of entry at the U.S.-Mexico border, before replacing that threat with one to first slap tariffs on Mexican-made automobiles.

‘If you can climb that, you deserve whatever you can get’ Trump says on wall visit
President heads to California one day after backing off — sort of — closure threat

President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference to announce his national emergency delclaration for the situation at the southern border on Feb. 15 in the White House's Rose Garden. He traveled to the border on Friday. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images file photo)

ANALYSIS — One day, President Donald Trump seemed dead set on closing ports of entry at the U.S.-Mexico border. The next, he had shelved that threat — maybe — for another aimed at pressuring Mexican officials to curb migrant flows into the United States.

That followed a retreat by the president on trying to pressure congressional Republicans into another attempt to repeal and replace former President Barack Obama’s entire 2010 health law. Fittingly, the latest roller coaster-like week of the Trump era ended with a presidential trip to the southern border.

Schiff under siege: Republicans cite Intelligence Committee’s ‘vendetta’ against Trump
California Democrat shrugs off GOP criticism: ‘I would expect nothing less’

House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., holds a media availability on the Intelligence Committee's Russia investigation in 2017. Republicans have dinged Schiff for statements about collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia now seen as hyperbolic at best. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans have made House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff their new bogeyman as they run a victory lap over Attorney General William Barr’s report on the special counsel investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Republicans have called for Schiff to resign as chairman for repeatedly declaring he had seen evidence of collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump, including a claim that “there is more than circumstantial evidence.”

For Nancy Pelosi, a woman is chief
Terri McCullough returns home to the Hill in pinnacle role as speaker’s chief of staff

Terri McCullough, incoming chief of staff for Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is photographed in the Capitol on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Terri McCullough is coming home.

The 50-year-old San Francisco Bay Area native, who began her career as an intern for Rep. Nancy Pelosi and has spent more than half her life since working for the California Democrat, is returning to the Hill on Monday.

He wrote the background check bill. He also shoots a mean pigeon
Mike Thompson won ‘Top Gun’ at a congressional tournament

Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., talks strategy with Olympic gold medalist Kim Rhode during the 2005 Congressional Shoot-Out in Maryland. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

After demolishing target after target in a hotly contested shooting tournament, Rep. Mike Thompson earned the title of “Top Gun.” He’s owned guns for as long as he can remember, loves a good duck hunt and eats all the meat he kills.

Oh, and he’s also the one who introduced the background check bill poised to pass the House this week.

Kamala Harris wants marijuana legalized, cites her Jamaican roots
California Democrat also says she smoked a joint in college and ‘inhaled’

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., has said she wants to legalize marijuana at the federal level. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Kamala Harris said Monday that she is in favor of legalizing marijuana at the federal level, pushing back against detractors in her own party who say she has a history of being too aggressive on drug offenders.

The California Democrat is running for president in 2020 and is widely considered a front-runner for the party’s nomination. 

Pelosi holds firm on delaying State of the Union until government reopens
The speaker, asked if she thinks a steel slat fence is the same as a wall, said ”Isn't it all in the president's mind?”

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks at a press conference in the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Reports: Kamala Harris to launch 2020 presidential run around MLK Day
California Democrat could put campaign headquarters in Baltimore

Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris of California is finalizing plans to announce a 2020 presidential run, multiple outlets have reported. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Pool file photo)

Sen. Kamala Harris is finalizing plans to announce her entry into the 2020 presidential race around Martin Luther King Day, multiple outlets reported late Wednesday night citing sources close to the California Democrat.

Harris would be the fourth person so far to join the race for the Democratic nomination, though that number is expected to balloon to dozens of candidates by the time campaign season kicks into full swing.