Washington (CNN) – Senate Democrats pushed back en masse against one of President Barack Obama’s federal court nominees on Wednesday, questioning Michael Boggs of Georgia about his past statements and beliefs about abortion, gay marriage and the Confederate flag.
Boggs is now a Georgia Court of Appeals judge, but his Senate Judiciary confirmation hearing focused on votes and statements from when he served as a conservative Democrat in the George state legislature, from 2000-2004.
(CNN) - Acting on a conservative battle cry and potentially triggering a court battle with the Obama administration, the Republican-led House voted Wednesday to hold former IRS official Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about her agency's targeting of conservative and other groups.
The 231-187 vote fell almost entirely along party lines, a decision that cut across three sharp divides: balance of power issues between the branches of government, political questions over the IRS scandal, and a Constitutional debate over Lerner's individual Fifth Amendment rights.
Washington (CNN) – The election-year attention on women lands directly on the House floor Wednesday, after Republican leaders decided to allow a vote on a National Women's History Museum, changing their approach to the issue.
Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Democrat of New York, has pushed the idea of a national women's museum for over 17 years. Her bill to trigger the first step, a museum commission, has passed the House and Senate before, but during separate sessions of Congress. In each case a Democratic majority in one chamber approved the museum commission but Republicans in the other blocked it.
Washington (CNN) – Republicans want to cut the deficit. And Republicans want to cut taxes. Tuesday, those two sweeping goals collided as a GOP-controlled House committee voted to advance hundreds of billions in tax cuts at the cost of adding those billions to the deficit.
The House Ways and Means Committee voted almost entirely along party lines to make six tax breaks permanent at a cost of $310 billion over the next 10 years.
(CNN) – In a blunt exchange that hit on a major American divide, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat from Nevada, stood by his comments that militia groups involved in a ranch standoff are “domestic terrorists,” while the state’s Republican senator, Dean Heller, replied that he considers them “patriots.”
The two men appeared Friday afternoon on KSNV’s “What’s Your Point?” question-and-answer show.
Washington (CNN) – The White House is not going far enough in sending aid to Ukraine, say top Republicans and Democrats on the House Armed Services Committee in a letter to President Obama that was obtained by CNN.
Committee Chairman Buck McKeon, ranking Democrat Adam Smith and 10 other key House Armed Services members wrote the President late Thursday night after the White House announced another round of non-lethal aid to Ukraine.
Washington (CNN) - The Obama administration announced Friday that it is extending the comment period on the State Department’s Keystone XL pipeline report – a move that could delay a final decision on the project indefinitely.
The State Department’s report found that the pipeline would not have a significant environmental impact. It was due to be finalized after a 90-day comment period ended in early May. FULL POST
Washington (CNN) – Redeploying a major argument from the battle over traditional cigarettes, a dozen Democratic members of Congress released a report on Monday concluding that electronic cigarettes “aggressively (promote) their products by using techniques and venues that appeal to youth” and should be strictly regulated like the non-electronic versions.
“E-cigarette manufactures don’t have to play by the same rules (as traditional cigarette makers),” said Rep. Henry Waxman, D-California, one of the leaders behind the investigation.
Washington (CNN) - The Republican-led House Oversight Committee voted 21-12 Thursday to charge former IRS official Lois Lerner with contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about the agency's targeting of conservative and other groups. The vote sets up a full debate on the House floor, followed by possible court battle over the Fifth Amendment and a potential standoff with the Justice Department.
"This is not something that I take lightly,” said Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa of California. “We cannot tell the American people we have done all we can do to get to the truth in this investigation if we give a pass to a critical witness like Ms. Lerner.”
Washington (CNN) –– House Republicans took two significant swings at former IRS official Lois Lerner on Wednesday, voting to refer her to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution and releasing previously confidential documents related to her role in the tax agency’s targeting of conservative groups.
Those documents indicate she paid specific attention to the Karl Rove-founded group Crossroads GPS and at one point mentioned or joked about taking a job with the pro-Obama group Organizing for America.