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The Senate has figured out how it wants to debate efforts to stop U.S. military intervention overseas. Senators found themselves in an unprecedented, but not unexpected, parliamentary situation Wednesday afternoon, faced with language in the statute of the War Powers Resolution that gave them no direction as to the terms under which amendments could be considered.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Senate’s longest-serving Republican is retiring at the end of this Congress, and he’s been slowly, but surely, packing away decades of accumulation. President Pro Tempore Orrin G. Hatch began sending boxes of belongings back to Utah about a year ago, but you wouldn’t know it from his personal office on the first floor of the Hart Building.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The sentencing of Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s former “fixer” and personal attorney, could hang over the president’s search for a new White House chief of staff. After all, on one of the counts that put Cohen in prison for three years, Cohen contends he was merely following his former client’s direction. And in an emotional statement in a New York courtroom Wednesday, Cohen blamed his actions on a “blind l...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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House Democrats are at odds over whether to adopt intraparty term limits for their elected leaders and committee chairs, even as it offers them a way out of their current impasse on the race for the speakership. The House Democratic Caucus has long wrestled with the idea of term limits. House Republicans adopted a rule in 1995 to limit committee chairs to serving three terms. Democrats kept that rule in place when they took the ma...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Senate is expected Wednesday to debate and vote on a resolution that would order an end to military involvement in the war in Yemen, one of several measures that lawmakers are considering to punish Saudi Arabia. But Wednesday’s discussion may be shortened due to scant floor time and several competing high-priority legislative items that, unlike the Yemen resolution, could still become law before the year is over....

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Congress will act quickly on compromise legislation to overhaul how sexual harassment is handled on Capitol Hill. The new proposal, released Wednesday, has the backing of leadership in both chambers and parties. Negotiations to reconcile the separate House and Senate proposals that passed easily early this year have dragged on for months. But swift action is expected in the Senate this week and the House the following week....

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Library of Congress has added a wide range of movies to the National Film Registry, announcing on Wednesday the selections of contemporary films that helped smash stereotypes, such as “Brokeback Mountain,” and thrillers like “The Shining.” Also new are classics such as “Hud” and documentaries like “Hearts and Minds,” as well as rarities like “Dixon-Wanamaker Expedition to Crow Agency.” “The National Film Regi...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Former Capitol Hill staffer, Thomas Dodd, was sentenced Wednesday for participating in an extensive scheme that involved defrauding charitable donors by laundering funds to pay personal and campaign expenses. Dodd, 40, was an aide to former Rep. Steve Stockman. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison, ordered to pay $800,000 in restitution and ordered to forfeit $153,044.28 in illicit gains....

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Congressional Democrats have identified their incoming committee leadership for the 116th Congress, although the full caucus must still weigh in and a few key chairs will have to wait until the House speakership contest is settled. In the Senate meanwhile, the roster is finished, with some notable movement in the smaller Democratic minority.  The House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee made its recommendations f...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Senate voted 50-49 to repeal a rule that shields donors to many nonprofit groups from disclosure to IRS officials. The dramatic vote was tied at 49-49 with 49 Democrats voting in favor and 49 Republicans against, when Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, cast the deciding vote to repeal the rule. Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C. was absent.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Nancy Pelosi is doing exactly what she said she wouldn’t in order to secure the votes she needs to be elected speaker — putting an end date on her tenure as the top House Democratic leader.  Under an agreement reached with seven Democrats who opposed her speaker bid, Pelosi will back term limits for the top three Democratic leaders. The limit she has agreed to will prevent her from serving as speaker beyond another four years. ...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The campaign finance issues looming around Rep.-elect Ross Spano, R-Fla., have grown more troublesome in recent days with new questions about the role of a longtime friend in funding his campaigns and hiring his new Congressional staff. Spano has not been sworn into Congress yet, but already faces bipartisan calls for inquiries by the Federal Election Commission and the House Ethics Committee into how he funded his cam...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The 116th Congress will officially gavel in on Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019.  The following day, the House will be in and the Senate out — the only day this will occur in 2019.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The FBI faced a dilemma and had to take “extraordinary” actions when it realized in 2017 that the former director of security for the Senate Intelligence Committee appeared compromised in his role safeguarding information and had a clandestine relationship with a national security journalist. Had James Wolfe been an executive branch employee, the FBI would have notified intelligence agencies if a Top Secret clearance holder was co...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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No GOP lawmaker has been willing to say that President Donald Trump’s hush payments to a Playboy model and an adult film star rise to the level of an impeachable offense — but at least one lame-duck Republican sounded off on the president’s “reprehensible” actions and called Trump’s campaign team’s dealings with Russia the “height of stupidity.” Rep. John Faso, who in the coming weeks will wrap up his first and only term represent...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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There is no public evidence to substantiate President Donald Trump’s claim on Tuesday, in the context of a discussion of security at the southern border, that 10 terrorists have been caught recently trying to enter the United States. Trump’s comments sparked a small tempest on social media, but a recent State Department report showed no terrorist threat on the Mexico border, and Trump’s own administration effecti...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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President Donald Trump, just hours ahead of a key meeting on the issue with Democratic leaders, made an impassioned plea for his southern border wall — and repeated another partially false claim. The commander in chief claimed that “large Caravans that WERE forming and heading to our Country” have ceased in Central America because of “our newly built Walls, makeshift Walls & Fences, or Border Patrol Officers...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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While federal prosecutors on Tuesday recommended a two-year prison sentence for James Wolfe, a former director of security for the Senate Intelligence Committee who pleaded guilty in October to a charge he lied to the FBI about his contacts with journalists, his former bosses urged the judge to show mercy.  A letter to the judge from current committee Chairman Richard Burr of North Carolina, top Democrat Mark Warner of...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Beto O'Rourke has continued to put out feelers for a possible run for the presidency in 2020 — most recently gauging interest from prominent black Democrats like former president Barack Obama and Florida governor candidate Andrew Gillum. O'Rourke, the lame-duck Democratic congressman who narrowly lost to GOP Sen. Ted Cruz in the Texas Senate race in November, has spoken with Obama, Gillum, and Rev. Al Sharpton ov...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Just before a scheduled meeting with Democratic leaders on border security funding, President Donald Trump appeared to soften his demand for $5 billion in construction funds for his southern border wall proposal. in a series of tweets, the president sought to build a case that portions of fencing and levee wall already built or in the works on his watch have successfully increased border security to a degree, even with...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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There were plenty of signs that Democrats found success online this election cycle: catchy videos went viral; a burgeoning army of small-dollar donors produced eye-popping fundraising numbers; and voters targeted online showed up at the polls.  But for some in the party, their digital efforts left much to be desired. Television ads still dominated campaigns, and Republican outside groups outpaced Democrats in digital ad spen...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Google CEO Sundar Pichai appeared for the first time before a congressional panel and batted away questions from lawmakers, who bombarded him about alleged bias against conservatives in search results and the company’s data collection practices. House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte said Google was collecting so much information on its users that it would “make the NSA blush,” referring to the National Security Agency...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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With the current impasse on the upcoming speaker election as backdrop, House Democrats on Tuesday discussed the concept of term limiting their elected leaders and committee chairs, but decided to postpone until January when the incoming freshmen will be present to participate. “We’re going to talk after the New Year,” Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi told reporters.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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OPINION — Well, it’s time for another of my end-of-the-year winners and losers columns. I’ve titled it “Another End-of-the-Year Winners & Losers Column” just so you don’t miss the point. As I have often done in the past, I’ll offer up a category with some nominees. Then I’ll give you my winner. If you disagree, please send your complaints to Nathan Gonzales of Inside Elections or Charlie Cook of the Cook Political...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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OPINION — It’s hard to excel in a job you never wanted in the first place. That seems to be one of the primary takeaways from the three years Paul Ryan served as House speaker since Republicans practically begged him to step into the void they created when they ran John Boehner off from the job in 2015. Add to Ryan’s burden the fact that he had to work with a president who was his opposite in every measure but party affiliation, a...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Former Rep. Van Hilleary will head back to Capitol Hill next year, this time as chief of staff to Rep.-elect John W. Rose. A member of the GOP class that swept to power in the mid-1990s, Hilleary represented Tennessee’s 4th District until 2003. He left office to run for Tennessee governor, but lost to Democrat Gov. Phil Bredesen. He ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in 2006.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The second-highest ranking Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is calling for a public hearing on the Trump administration’s reported wasteful spending on border security. The inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security found that a staffing plan green-lighted by the president has been marred by wasted resources and overlapping responsibilities among employees and contractors....

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Rep. Mark Sanford is one of roughly a third of House members taping up boxes this week and preparing for life after Congress. His transition to private life has been equal parts odd and nostalgic, the South Carolina Republican told two local newspapers in exit interviews over the last few weeks.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Senate is poised to vote on a bipartisan criminal justice bill as soon as this week, the culmination of behind-the-scenes negotiations and a public campaign by lawmakers, the White House and advocates to press Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring it to the floor this year. But that does not mean the debate will be free of drama.  McConnell announced Tuesday that the revised bill would be put on the floor agenda this...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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President Donald Trump’s top spokeswoman suggested her boss grew frustrated with outgoing Chief of Staff John Kelly disagreeing with his policies — and sometimes taking disputes public. “I think he brought a lot of structure to the White House that was needed at the time he came in,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said of his second chief of staff. “That being said, I think the president is looking for so...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The Senate will take up a bipartisan criminal justice bill this month after changes to the text secured more support from Republicans, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Tuesday. Senators could turn to the new text as early as the end of this week, he said.

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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Senators and veterans groups are working to convince a few last holdouts to stop blocking a quick floor vote on a bill to extend benefits for Vietnam veterans exposed to Agent Orange. Advocates are lobbying President Donald Trump to sign the bill if the Senate clears it. But Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah has questions about whether science backs up the policy. And Budget Chairman Michael B. Enzi of Wyoming is concerned about its near...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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ANALYSIS | Vice President Mike Pence looked taken aback, barely moving and saying nothing as President Donald Trump and the top Democratic congressional leaders bickered and moved the country — with each insult and barb — closer to a partial holiday season government shutdown. The former Indiana congressman’s statuesque performance was a contrast to the kinetic scene unfolding around him, another made-for-television...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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The former president of a Houston nonprofit pleaded guilty Monday to charges of concealing that a 2013 congressional delegation trip to Azerbaijan was funded by that country’s government. The Justice Department indicted Kemal Oksuz, aka Kevin Oksuz, 49, in September, alleging that he lied on disclosure forms filed with the House Ethics Committee prior to and following a privately sponsored congressional trip to A...

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Source: Roll Call - Washington, United States
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