Senate

Sen. Cotton’s immigration bill

Featured image Sen. Tom Cotton and Sen. David Perdue have introduced a bill that would cut legal immigration to the U.S. in half. The legislation is called the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment (RAISE) Act. Its goal is to restore historical levels of immigration in order to give working Americans a fair shot at wealth creation. The current system fails to do this. Rather, as Sen. Cotton argues, by accepting an »

Al Franken’s rambling, intellectually dishonest diatribe [With Comment by John]

Featured image During Sen. Jeff Sessions’ confirmation hearing, I wrote. the following about his exchange with Sen. Al Franken: Franken tried to show that Sessions [in answering a Senate questionnaire] “misrepresented” his role by listing several big civil rights cases as among the most important cases he participated in. Franken’s point was that, although Sessions signed the complaint, he hadn’t really participated. Franken relied mainly on Gerry Hebert, lead counsel in most »

Schuminations

Featured image Senate Democratic Chuck Schumer’s fake tears over President Trump’s puported “travel ban” is a moment that signifies and resonates. Good grief! Is that the best you can do, man? As political theater, that was pathetic. Schumer can’t fake sincerity. He’s not a touch feely kind of guy. What a phony. If he’s a genuine article of any kind, it would be the thug kind. He didn’t rise in New York »

Kelly Ayotte returns to Washington

Featured image Former Senator Kelly Ayotte will lead the White House team trying to shepherd Judge Neil Gorsuch through the Senate. This means introducing him to her former colleagues and singing his praises to them. Team Trump’s selection of Ayotte for this assignment makes perfect sense. The role traditionally goes to an ex-member with good connections to the body. Fred Thompson and Dan Coates filled it during the confirmation process for John »

Confirming Judge Gorsuch

Featured image By nominating Judge Neil Gorsuch rather than Judge William Pryor, the original frontrunner, I suspect that President Trump hopes to avoid a successful filibuster, and thus get his man confirmed without resort to the “nuclear option.” I’m not saying that this was the decisive consideration. It may be that Trump simply preferred Gorsuch — I don’t know. But it seems likely that Team Trump viewed the prospect of confirming Gorsuch »

A rumor of Schumer

Featured image Rep. Mike Pompeo’s confirmation as CIA Director was to take place by voice vote this past Friday along with the confirmation of General Mattis as Secretary of Defense and General John Kelly as Secretary of Homeland Security. That was the deal that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer made with Senate Republicans, but Schumer went back on his word. It seems rather early for Schumer to show himself for who he »

Smoking Franken

Featured image Minnesota Senator Al Franken wants so badly to count for something. As a United States Senator he is a powerful man, but Harry Reid stripped some of the power from the minority that Franken and his Democratic colleagues now occupy. Like most of his other of his Democratic colleagues, Franken flails away as he seeks to lead the cranky opposition to Trump in the Senate. As a humorist, Franken was »

Inadvertent comic relief from Al Franken at the Price hearing

Featured image At Tom Price’s hearing yesterday, the Democrats focused on alleged ethics problems. One involved the purchase of Zimmer Biomet stock. John has discussed this purchase which was directed by Price’s stockbroker as part of ongoing management of the congressman’s investments. A second involved the purchase of Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian biotech company. The decision to make this purchase was Price’s. There is a dispute between Price and Sen. Patty Murray »

Tom Cotton calls out Cory Booker

Featured image Scott has written about Sen. Cory Booker’s vacuous testimony against the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions for attorney general. Booker broke with Senate tradition, becoming, it is said, the first U.S. Senator to testify against the nomination of a colleague. Why did Booker do it? I believe he did it to establish his place as a possible contender for the Democratic presidential nomination. Before Booker testified, Sen. Tom Cotton had »

Sen. Sessions is breezing through his confirmation hearing [Updated]

Featured image The Senate Judiciary Committee is holding Jeff Sessions’ confirmation hearing today. The committee went at it for three hours and is now taking a lunch break. No one has yet laid a glove on the Alabama Senator. Only Al Franken went after him hard. The ex-comedian succeeded mainly in beclowning himself. The hearings were interrupted several times by the screams of protesters. Their screeching only served to underscore the calm, »

GOP Senators bring clarity to the Russia election hacking debate

Featured image Yesterday, the Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on Russian hacking especially as it pertained to last year’s presidential election. Paul Kane, a liberal at the Washington Post, gives this account: Senate Republicans walked a tightrope Thursday trying to show their toughness against Vladi­mir Putin’s Russia without undermining the legitimacy of President-elect Donald Trump’s victory in November. Again and again during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Russian »

Tillerson, Russia, and hypocrisy

Featured image Rex Tillerson will be President-elect Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State. As head of Exxon-Mobil, Tillerson has ties with Russia and a good relationship with Vladimir Putin, who awarded him the Kremlin’s Order of Friendship in 2012. On the other hand, Tillerson reportedly has the support of Condoleezza Rice and former vice president Cheney. They must believe he will not be soft of Russia. Nonetheless, Senators like John McCain and »

Should Claire McCaskill determine who will replace Scalia?

Featured image Who is the eighth best (or least bad) Democratic Senator? If you answered “I don’t give damn” you are wrong. Under current rules, the eighth best Democratic Senator holds veto power over the person Donald Trump will select to replace Justice Scalia on the Supreme Court. Confirmation of a Supreme Court nominee requires 60 votes. There will be 52 Republican Senators in the Senate that decides whether to confirm Trump’s »

Good news from Wisconsin and Indiana

Featured image Hillary Clinton’s woes and Donald Trump’s revival figure to be good news for “down ballot” Republican candidates. I don’t think the House was ever going to flip, but not long ago the Senate seemed very likely to. Now, perhaps, the GOP will maintain control. I want to focus on two races — one that we have covered extensively and one I’m not sure we have discussed at all. In Wisconsin, »

The embarrassing Republican arguments for saving AFFH

Featured image Last week, 16 Republican Senators blocked Senator Mike Lee’s amendment to defund AFFH, the Obama administration regulation through which the left seeks to force high-density housing on unwilling cities and towns and to let federal bureaucrats decide the racial, ethnic, and income balance of local communities. What arguments did these Republicand advance against defunding this radical left-wing scheme? Did they actually defend AFFH on the merits? Stanley Kurtz has examined »

Senate Republicans block Lee Amendment, preserve AFFH

Featured image The Lee Amendment to defund President Obama’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulation failed in the Senate yesterday because not enough Republicans backed it. The Amendment was tabled by a vote of 60-37. Jeremy Carl aptly describes this vote as a defeat for conservatism, community control, and common sense. It is a victory, as Carl says, for turning the federal government into a National Zoning board, forcing high density housing »

Susan Collins moves to prevent AFFH defund

Featured image Sen. Susan Collins has filed an AFFH amendment that instead of defunding the program, as Sen. Mike Lee’s amendment would do, provides that the Department of Housing and Urban Development cannot “direct a grantee to undertake specific changes to existing zoning laws as part of carrying out” enforcement of AFFH. The amendment is designed to give Senators a means of pretending to defend localities and municipalities against AFFH, without actually »