Massachusetts

Why Congress Won’t Touch the 25th Amendment
Authors intended it for total incapacity and vice president needs to lead any move

President Donald Trump isn’t likely to face an attempt to remove him, using the 25th amendment. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Pushing toward the pinnacle of defensive hyperbole by proclaiming himself “a very stable genius” has done more than anything to subject Donald Trump to speculation at the Capitol about how psychologically fit he is for the presidency.

Trump’s first comprehensive medical exam on Friday after a year in office, when his sedentary lifestyle and junk food habits have only been enabled, did not dispel worries by many congressional gym rats about the 71-year-old’s ability to withstand the job’s bodily strain.

Why Democrats Don’t Want to Talk About Legalizing Marijuana
Still stinging from being called soft on drugs a generation ago

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., is one of a few Democrats in the Senate who vocally support legalizing marijuana. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As the Trump administration begins to crack down on states that legalized marijuana, advocates for legalization hope Democrats will take their side.

But many Democrats are still squeamish about fully embracing the drug. 

Northeastern Lawmakers Unite Against Trump Offshore Drilling Plan
Republicans and Democrats from region join Florida and West Coast colleagues blasting plan

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, penned a joint letter on Monday to resist the Trump administration’s offshore drilling plans off their state’s coast. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Lawmakers in the Northeast united across party lines on Monday to hazard against President Donald Trump’s offshore drilling plan to re-open more than 90 percent of the U.S. coastline to oil and gas companies.

Roughly 94 percent of the coastline, including the entire Atlantic and Pacific coasts, remains off limits to oil and gas drilling. But Trump’s Interior Department revealed a five-year plan proposing 47 potential lease sales to energy companies through 2024, including two in the North Atlantic region from Maine to New Jersey.

At the Races: Escape Hatch
2018 is here, and more senior Republicans are heading for the exits

The Senate is losing a longtime member — and a songwriter. Utah GOP Sen. Orrin G. Hatch is known for his compositions. His song “Souls Along the Way,” written about the late Democratic Sen. Ted Kennedy and Kennedy’s wife, was included on the “Ocean’s Twelve” movie soundtrack. Hatch and Kennedy worked together on major health care legislation, and the pair were good friends. (Douglas Graham/Congressional Quarterly file photo)

You can keep track of House and Senate races with this weekly newsletter. (If you didn’t get it in your inbox, *subscribe here.*) We want to hear what you think. Send us your questions, tips or candidate sightings. — Simone Pathé and Bridget Bowman.This week … 2018 has arrived! Three Republicans announced their retirement, two Senate Democrats arrived and Steve Bannon put some conservative candidates in a tight spot.

Hatch Heads for the Exit: Utah Republican Orrin G. Hatch ended months of speculation Tuesday by announcing he was retiring after seven terms in the Senate. That opens the door for former presidential nominee/Massachusetts governor/Trump critic/skillful ironer Mitt Romney to run for Hatch’s seat. So is he running? It’s widely believed he will, but Romney has yet to officially say so. He did casually change his location on Twitter from Massachusetts to Utah following Hatch’s announcement. #WeSeeWhatYouDidThere.

Doug Jones Took Office Leading Senate Democrats in Diversity
Jones chief of staff and transition adviser are African-Americans

Then-Democratic candidate for Senate Doug Jones speaks, flanked from left by Selma Mayor Darrio Melton, Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Ala., and former Gov. Deval Patrick, D-Mass., outside of the Brown Chapel AME Church in Selma, Ala., on Dec. 9. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Alabama Sen. Doug Jones took office on Wednesday as the only Democrat in the Senate with an African-American chief of staff.

Dana Gresham, Jones’ new chief, was previously assistant secretary for governmental affairs at the Department of Transportation. He was nominated by former President Barack Obama and held the position for all eight years of the administration. He most recently was a consultant in D.C.

Markey, Lieu Push ‘First Strike’ Bill After Trump Taunts Kim
President to North Korean leader: My ‘nuclear button’ is ‘much bigger & more powerful’

A North Korean ballistic missile during "Victory Day" parade in 2013. (Wikimedia Commons)

Lawmakers are pushing legislation anew that would limit Donald Trump’s ability to launch nuclear weapons on his own after the president taunted North Korea’s leader over the size and lethality of his “nuclear button.”

After North Korean leader Kim Jong-un used part of his New Year's message to remind the world he has a “nuclear button,” Trump responded with a Tuesday evening tweet about his own atomic button.

Opinion: The Price of a Border Wall
Protection for Dreamers may be a trade to consider

Immigration rights demonstrators prepare to march from the White House to the Trump Hotel and the Justice Department to oppose President Donald Trump’s decision to end the DACA program for “Dreamers” in September. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The congressional agenda for the coming weeks is so chaotic that it makes O’Hare International Airport in a blizzard seem as restful as a Zen retreat.

The calendar is filled with rigid deadlines. Jan. 19 is the date to both fund the government to avert a shutdown and to reauthorize a key provision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

It’s Not Just Romney: Hatch Retirement Could Lead to Decisions for Grassley, Crapo
Judiciary chairman appears to have time left as leader of Finance panel

Sens Charles E. Grassley and Orrin G. Hatch have served alongside each other at the Finance and Judiciary committees. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

When GOP Sen. Orrin G. Hatch announced Tuesday that he will retire from the Senate after serving Utah for more than four decades, talk quickly turned to whether Mitt Romney will seek to succeed him.

But on Capitol Hill, the pending departure of the Finance Committee chairman — who could have wielded the tax writing gavel for two more years under conference rules — also raises questions about which senator will lead the GOP on taxes, trade, health care and entitlements.

Hatch’s Congressional Career in Photos
The seven-term Utah senator said he’s retiring at the end of this term

Nov. 13, 2017: Ranking member Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and Sen. Michael D. Crapo, R-Idaho, arrive for the Senate Finance Committee markup of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, a staple of the Senate for more than 40 years, said Tuesday that he will retire at the end of his term and not seek re-election in the 2018 midterms. 

Roll Call dug into our archives to find a few highlights of the Utah Republican’s seven terms in office:

Sen. Orrin Hatch Announces Retirement
‘Every good fighter knows when to hang up the gloves’

Utah Sen. Orrin G. Hatch will not be running for an eighth term. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Orrin G. Hatch announced Tuesday he will retire after seven terms in the Senate. The Utah lawmaker becomes the third of eight Senate Republicans up for re-election in 2018 to retire. 

“When the president visited Utah last month, he said I was a fighter. I’ve always been a fighter. I was an amateur boxer in my youth, and I brought that fighting spirit with me to Washington. But every good fighter knows when to hang up the gloves. And for me, that time is soon approaching,” Hatch said in a video statement.