(CNN) Washington - On President Barack Obama’s last day of a troubled vacation, politicians criticized his leadership and called for action in the growing threat of terrorist group ISIS.
“The President has got to come forward with a cohesive, comprehensive strategy, not only in Iraq, but also in Ukraine, also in other parts of the world. This is an administration - which the kindest word I can use is feckless - where they have not outlined a role that the United States of America has to play, and that’s a leadership role,” Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, said on “Fox News Sunday.”
In the wake of the beheading of American journalist James Foley, administration officials made clear that they are shifting from defensive operations against ISIS in Iraq to weighing an attack on ISIS where they are strongest, in Syria. But politicians on both sides of the aisle are impatient for the President to construct a plan and consult with Congress on what many see as an imminent threat from ISIS, which calls itself the Islamic State and is called ISIL by some U.S. government officials.
Washington (CNN) -- The Obama administration is expanding its push to stop what it calls "restrictive state laws" over the ability of voters to cast ballots.
The Justice Department said it was filing legal briefs in support of separate, private lawsuits against Wisconsin and Ohio.
Washington (CNN) – After several weeks in which the influx of tens of thousands of undocumented children illegally crossing the border into the United States has dominated the headlines, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush wrote an op-ed about the issue, calling for a change in how the children are handled after they are arrested - and also urging his fellow Republicans not to use this as an "excuse" to abandon comprehensive immigration reform.
His Wall Street Journal opinion piece that published Wednesday evening is similar to the statement he released to CNN last week and is just the second time he's spoken on the issue that has caused national debate as unaccompanied children continue to cross the border at an increasing rate.
The potential 2016 presidential candidate wrote in the in the Wall Street Journal, "We now have a humanitarian crisis on our Southern border that demands strong leadership that respects the rule of law."
(CNN) – The Obama administration announced revisions to the Obamacare contraception mandate so that nonprofit religious organizations can opt out of signing a release form to avoid covering birth control and workers for those nonprofits are able to obtain separate contraception coverage without a copay.
"This is part of ensuring that all women have access to contraception coverage," said a senior administration official.
Earlier this month the Supreme Court issued a temporary order that allows Wheaton College to avoid covering birth control without filing a religious exemption form with its insurer. The new revisions to the Obamacare mandate reveal that the White House is anticipating the U.S. Supreme Court's finalization of the temporary injunction in the coming months.
SEATTLE (CNN) - As President Barack Obama helped Democrats bank millions in campaign cash on Tuesday, he acknowledged his administration is confronting "some big overseas challenges" in the Middle East, Ukraine and elsewhere.
Speaking at a fundraiser in a wealthy enclave of Seattle, Obama said there is a sense among Americans "that around the world the old order isn't holding and we're not quite where we need to be in terms of a new order that's based on a different set of principles."
Overseas, Israel continues its ground invasion of Gaza and investigators continue to probe the downing of a Malaysia Air jetliner over Ukraine. Some Republicans and pundits have chastised Obama for maintaining his three-day fundraising swing on the West Coast, though his aides argue the President can do his job from anywhere.
Washington (CNN) – Ramping up his investigation of the White House and whether it illegally used government staff for political purposes, House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa released audio of a 2012 voicemail message that his office says depicts then-Labor Secretary Hilda Solis asking an employee working for her to contribute money and recruit others to attend a fundraiser for the pro-Obama Organizing For America.
In a release, the committee called the phone message a clear violation of the Hatch Act, which limits political activity for government officials.
(CNN) – Obama administration officials will meet with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus this week to discuss mounting concerns about the fate of the unaccompanied minors fleeing to the United States from Central America.
"Administration officials will meet with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on Wednesday," a White House official said Monday. The official said more details about the meeting would come later.
(CNN) - The Senate on Thursday confirmed Shaun Donovan to be the new director of the Office of Management and Budget.
The vote was 75-22 to confirm Donovan to become the next budget chief in the cabinet-level position central to the day-to-day running of the federal government.
(CNN) - Mr. Castro is coming to Washington.
The Senate on Wednesday easily confirmed San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julian Castro to be the next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. The vote was 71-26 in favor of confirmation.
CNN's John King and other top political reporters empty out their notebooks each Sunday on "Inside Politics" to reveal five things that will be in the headlines in the days, weeks and months ahead.
Washington (CNN) – A déjà vu moment for the Obama White House and a number of interesting 2014 election dynamics closed our Sunday Inside Politics discussion. And don’t forget about Mitt Romney. Or was that DO forget about Mitt Romney?