Congress

Stand by your Awan (2)

Featured image We’ve been writing about, and seeking to understand, the Awan connection. It is a scandal involving former House IT staffers with ties to Pakistan who are accused of stealing equipment from members’ offices without their knowledge and committing serious, potentially illegal, violations on the House IT network. Interest in the scandal has been reinforced by the indictment of Imran Awan and his wife last week. Imran Awan had previously been »

Blabbermouth speaks

Featured image The Orlando Sun Sentinel’s Anthony Man caught up with Debbie Wasserman (a/k/a Blabbermouth) Schultz for an interview regarding her former IT employee Imran Awan, now charged with bank fraud and terminated from Schultz’s employ earlier this week. Man notes that Schultz kept him on the payroll of Team Blabbermouth “six months after he was banned from the House network and fired by other members of Congress.” It was also six »

Ben Rhodes is person of interest in unmasking probe

Featured image Sara Carter of Circa reports that former Obama administration National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes has emerged as a person of interest in the House Intelligence Committee’s unmasking investigation. Carter cites a letter sent yesterday by the committee to the National Security Agency (NSA). The letter requests the number of unmasking requests made by Rhodes from Jan. 1, 2016 to Jan. 20, 2017, according to Carter’s sources. Susan Rice, Samantha Power, »

Europe balks at Russia sanctions; Trump won’t veto them

Featured image President Trump has decided not to veto the Russia sanctions legislation passed by Congress. The decision was probably an easy one inasmuch as (1) a veto would easily have been overridden, resulting in embarrassment for the president and (2) it would have added fuel to Trump-Russia connection stories. Naturally, Russia is angry about the sanctions. Europe is also unhappy, which is ironic because some European leaders have criticized Trump for »

Understanding the Awan connection

Featured image Scott wrote today about the “Awan connection” — a scandal, finally getting some attention, that involves House staffers with ties to Pakistan who are accused of stealing equipment from members’ offices without their knowledge and committing serious, potentially illegal, violations on the House IT network. Interest in the scandal has been reinforced by the arrest of Imran Awan Monday evening as he was about to board a flight to Lahore, »

The Awan connection

Featured image Poltico reported in February that five House staffers were under criminal investigation amid allegations that they stole equipment from more than 20 member offices and accessed House IT systems without lawmakers’ knowledge. The five staffers all worked for Democratic congressmen and have links to Pakistan. The Daily Caller reported that one of the suspects has hightailed it to Pakistan. Something is happening here. One can only infer that some serious »

Trump loses Congress on Russia

Featured image Over the weekend, Congress reached an agreement on sweeping sanctions legislation to punish Russia for its election meddling and aggression toward its neighbors. Congress thereby rejected President Trump’s contention that he needs flexibility to adjust the sanctions to fit his diplomatic initiatives with Moscow. Congressional Republicans, it appears, don’t have faith in Trump’s diplomatic initiatives with Moscow. Will Trump veto the legislation? Probably not. He seems to lack the votes »

Self-inflicted stupidity

Featured image CBS News anchor Scott Pelley — make that former CBS News anchor Scott Pelley — is the face of sanctimonious liberalism. The attempted assassination of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and his GOP colleagues on the baseball field in Alexandria last week somehow prompted Pelley’s comment on the day after: “It’s time to ask whether the attack on the United States Congress, yesterday, was foreseeable, predictable and, to some degree, »

Persist in prayers

Featured image Yesterday Dr. Jack Sava, director of Trauma at Washington MedStar Hospital Center, held a 15-minute press conference to update the public on Scalise’s condition. Dr. Sava’s update is prefaced with a brief statement from Mrs. Scalise by chief of staff Brett Horton. Horton reiterated the family’s gratitude to the Capitol Police officers and first responders. I am posting the entirety of the C-SPAN video below. We weren’t wrong to fear »

Prayers for Scalise and Mika

Featured image Early reports following the attempted massacre of congressional Republicans on the baseball field in Arlington yesterday sounded an optimistic note on the condition of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. At last word, however, he remained in critical condition. Last night the MedStar Washington Hospital Center released a statement that Scalise’s office tweeted out: Update on the condition of Majority Whip Steve Scalise, courtesy of @MedStarWHC: pic.twitter.com/i5WlzcUVpM — Rep. Steve Scalise »

Update and thoughts on the Scalise shooting [UPDATED: shooter is a Democratic Socialist]

Featured image House Majority Whip Steve Scalise was wounded in a shooting spree targeting Republican House members who were practicing for a congressional baseball game. According to reports, he was shot in the hip. Though the injury is serious, President Trump has tweeted that Scalise is expected to recover fully. Sen. Jeff Flake, who was with Scalise in the hospital, reported that his colleague was awake and coherent throughout. However, it is »

Rep. Scalise shot in Alexandria

Featured image A man with a rifle went on a shooting spree targeting Republicans practicing in Alexandria for the upcoming Congressional Baseball Game. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise was wounded in the attack. He is at last report in surgery. Members of Rep. Scalise’s security detail were apparently also shot, as well as others including a staffer. Both Politico and CNN have reports with quotes from congressmen on the scene. Below is »

Mugging Mr. Murray: Murray speaks

Featured image American Enterprise Institute fellow Charles Murray must rank among our most prominent living social scientists. At a May 17 hearing of the Joint Economic Committee convened by Senator and JEC vice chairman Mike Lee, Murray was included on a panel of social scientists testifying on the state of social capital in America — the subject of a new report released by the committee. Testifying along with Murray on the panel »

The view from GA-6

Featured image Atlanta attorney Craig Bertschi writes from Georgia’s Sixth District with a report on the pending special election to replace HHS Secretary Tom Price in the House. The great Harvey Klehr — historian extraordinaire of American Communism and now emeritus of Emory University — makes a cameo appearance in Craig’s report. After that, the highlights are few and far between. Consider Craig’s report a plea to Republicans in the district to »

When Al Franken body-slammed a demonstrator

Featured image When I wrote about Fightin’ Greg Gianforte’s assault (as it seems to me) on a reporter, I believed that Al Franken had a history of physical aggression against folks who annoyed him. However, the only incident I recalled (and only vaguely) involved a much lower level of violence than Gianforte’s — pushing someone, perhaps someone in conservative media, out of his way in a Capitol corridor. Thus, I passed on »

Mugging Mr. Murray

Featured image American Enterprise Institute fellow Charles Murray must rank among our most prominent living social scientists. At a hearing of the Joint Economic Committee convened by Senator and JEC vice chairman Mike Lee last week, Murray was included on a panel of social scientists testifying on the state of social capital in America — the subject of a new report released by the committee. Testifying along with Murray on the panel »

The new Obamacare replacement legislation — a solid step in the right direction

Featured image From a conservative perspective, I think it’s clear that the new House Obamacare legislation — the MacArthur Amendment — is an improvement over the original bill concocted by Speaker Ryan. But how much of one? Yuval Levin makes the case that the core concept of the new legislation — state waivers from Obamacare insurance regulations — represents a significant improvement, in terms of both substance and political pragmatism. He writes: »