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  • Powell says outlook strong, signaling gradual rate hikes

    February 27, 2018 8:43 AM

    WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, making his first public comments as leader of the nation's central bank, is telling Congress that the outlook for the U.S. economy "remains strong" despite the recent stock market turbulence. He says that bright prospects for growth and employment will allow... more »
  • Senate Republicans cruise toward passage of budget plan

    October 19, 2017 7:13 AM

    WASHINGTON - Senate Republicans seem to be on cruise control to pass a $4 trillion budget plan that shelves GOP deficit concerns in favor of the party's drive to cut taxes. The nonbinding budget plan would set the stage for tax legislation later this year that could pass... more »
  • Louisiana man held in Guatemala over bullets in luggage

    September 13, 2017 11:27 AM

    NEW ORLEANS- Members of Congress say a Louisiana man has been detained in Guatemala since March after bullets were found in his luggage during an airport scan. Sen. Bill Cassidy and Rep. Mike Johnson say Zachary Wilson of Shreveport was arrested following a church mission trip. Johnson's office... more »
  • Governor Edwards seeks disaster loan change in Harvey bill Play Video

    September 6, 2017 2:28 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Gov. John Bel Edwards is asking Congress to tweak federal law governing disaster loans as part of the Hurricane Harvey aid legislation being rushed to passage. The governor sent a letter Wednesday to U.S. House and Senate leaders seeking an adjustment to language governing Small Business Administration... more »
  • Source says Trump, Hill leaders to meet next Wednesday

    August 30, 2017 10:20 AM

    WASHINGTON- Congressional aides say President Donald Trump will meet House and Senate leaders at the White House next Wednesday, as lawmakers return from an August break and plunge into a daunting pile of work. Congress will face demands to speed aid to Houston to help the swamped metropolis recover... more »
  • Lawmakers, friends discuss political rhetoric after Scalise shooting Play Video

    June 15, 2017 10:48 PM

    BATON ROUGE – State Representative Cameron Henry said his reaction to fly to Washington, D.C., immediately after learning of his friend U.S. Representative Steve Scalise's injury from a shooting was second nature. Henry spoke with WBRZ reporter Mark Armstrong in Washington, D.C., Thursday evening. Henry said he has... more »
  • Officials release comments about D.C. shooting that injured La.'s Scalise

    June 14, 2017 9:59 AM

    BATON ROUGE – Louisiana officials responded to the Washtington D.C. shooting that wounded Congressman Steve Scalise of New Orleans with messages of shock and concern Wednesday. > LISTEN: Cong. Garret Graves (Baton Rouge) discusses the shooting with WBRZ. Hear it HERE . Rep. Scalise's office "This morning,... more »
  • Congress passes long-sought VA accountability bill

    June 13, 2017 8:54 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress has approved long-sought legislation to make firing employees easier for the Department of Veterans Affairs. President Donald Trump supported the legislation to fix a struggling agency serving millions of veterans. The House cleared the bipartisan bill on a 368-55 vote. It replaces an earlier version... more »
  • Ex-Senate staffer: Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Bunning has died

    May 27, 2017 2:20 PM

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Jim Bunning, a former Hall of Fame pitcher who went on to serve in Congress, has died. He was 85. Bunning's death was confirmed by Jon Deuser, who served as chief of staff when Bunning was in the Senate. Deuser said he was notified about the death... more »
  • Trump's food stamp cuts face hard sell in Congress

    May 24, 2017 8:20 AM

    WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump's budget builds on more than two decades of Republican efforts to cut food stamps. With Republican majorities in the House and Senate, conservatives who have pushed for the cuts are hoping they can rein in the program's $70 billion cost. But making changes has... more »
  • Brennan warned Russian against election meddling

    May 23, 2017 9:21 AM

    WASHINGTON - Former CIA Director John Brennan says he warned Russia against meddling in the presidential election during a call to the head of the Russian intelligence service on Aug. 4. Brennan told the House intelligence committee on Tuesday that he was the first U.S. official to call out the... more »
  • House GOP banks on incorrect forecast in Louisiana budget

    May 5, 2017 2:36 PM

    BATON ROUGE - As House Republicans crafted their version of next year's budget, they built the spending plan off a central premise: Louisiana's income projections are always wrong, and for nearly a decade those missed forecasts have forced repeated cuts across government. GOP leaders anticipated the projections would be off... more »
  • Congress finishes spending bill, sends legislation to Trump

    May 5, 2017 8:48 AM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has delivered to President Donald Trump the first significant legislation of his presidency, a bipartisan $1.1 trillion spending bill that would keep the government running through September - putting off, for now, battles over Trump's U.S.-Mexico border wall and his promised military buildup. The lopsided, 79-18... more »
  • Yates to say she expressed alarm to White House on Flynn

    May 3, 2017 7:51 AM

    WASHINGTON - Former acting attorney general Sally Yates is expected to testify to Congress next week that she expressed alarm to the White House about President Donald Trump's national security adviser's contacts with the Russian ambassador. That could contradict how the administration has characterized her counsel. Yates is expected to... more »
  • Repeal or spare? Pressure is on moderates over health care

    May 2, 2017 7:53 AM

    HAMILTON TOWNSHIP - Moderate House Republicans face heavy pressure from both sides on the question of whether to scrap Democrat Barack Obama's health care law. How do their voters feel? That's not simple. In interviews in the members' districts, Associated Press reporters found constituents deeply divided over the Affordable Care... more »
  • Lawmakers agree on $1T plan government-wide funding bill

    May 1, 2017 9:10 AM

    WASHINGTON - Congressional Republicans and Democrats have reached agreement on a huge $1 trillion-plus spending bill that would fund most government operations through September, but denies President Donald Trump money for a southern border wall and rejects his proposed cuts to popular domestic programs. Aides to lawmakers involved in the... more »
  • Former AG Sally Yates to testify May 8 in Russia probe

    April 25, 2017 10:47 AM

    WASHINGTON - Former acting attorney general Sally Yates is scheduled to appear at a congressional hearing next month on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Yates is to appear May 8 along with James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence. The hearing before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee... more »
  • La. congressional delegation reacts to Syrian missile strikes

    April 7, 2017 9:50 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The United States has attacked a Syrian air base with roughly 60 cruise missiles in response to a chemical weapons attack it blames on President Bashar Assad. Louisiana's congressional delegation issued the following statements on the missile strikes: U.S. Senator John Kennedy: “I commend... more »
  • House intelligence committee chair steps aside

    April 6, 2017 9:47 AM

    WASHINGTON - The chairman of the House intelligence committee says he will temporarily step aside from the panel's probe into Russian meddling in the election. In a statement on Thursday, Republican congressman Devin Nunes of California says that several left-wing activist groups have filed accusations against him with the office... more »
  • House measures rebuke North Korea for belligerent behavior

    April 4, 2017 9:48 AM

    WASHINGTON - The Republican-led House has voted overwhelmingly to condemn North Korea's development of long-range ballistic missiles and urge that the reclusive Asian nation be put back on the terrorism blacklist. Speaker Paul Ryan says the two measures approved Monday by wide margins are "concrete actions" that hold Pyongyang accountable... more »
  • Congress seen as not likely to pass tax overhaul quickly

    April 3, 2017 9:06 AM

    WASHINGTON - After their humiliating loss on health care, Republicans in Congress could use a quick victory on a big issue. It won't be an overhaul of the tax code. Tax reform could prove harder to accomplish than repealing and replacing Barack Obama's health law. Congressional Republicans are divided on... more »
  • $1.2B in Louisiana flood recovery spending plans approved

    March 31, 2017 6:45 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has approved Louisiana's plan to spend $1.2 billion for flood recovery. The approval is part of the state's final action plan. HUD previously approved an original action plan in April for an initial $438 million appropriation from Congress.... more »
  • Is 'Obamacare' repeal dead -- or a legislative zombie

    March 31, 2017 7:47 AM

    WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump's plan to kill Obamacare died last week. Or maybe it didn't. In never-say-die Washington, big legislative proposals that are in the casket one day can show signs of a pulse the next. The repeal effort appears to have zombie status - somewhere between dead and... more »
  • Trump aide with Russia ties offers to talk to House panel

    March 24, 2017 11:02 AM

    WASHINGTON - The Republican chairman of the House intelligence committee says former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort has volunteered to speak with the panel as part of its ongoing investigation into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 election. Rep. Devin Nunes of California told reporters that Manafort's counsel contacted the... more »
  • Louisiana governor urges Congress to keep Medicaid expansion

    March 14, 2017 2:36 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Gov. John Bel Edwards is urging Congress to keep the Medicaid expansion program intact as they work to replace President Barack Obama's health care law. Louisiana's Democratic governor sent a letter Tuesday to Republican and Democratic congressional leaders. In it, he says he has "serious concern" with... more »
  • Trump administration announces steps to avoid debt default

    March 9, 2017 3:40 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Trump administration is letting Congress know that it will begin taking steps next week to keep the government from an unprecedented default on the national debt. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says in a letter to lawmakers that he will employ measures to avoid breaching the borrowing limit... more »
  • Senators seek evidence to support Trump's wiretapping claim

    March 8, 2017 12:54 PM

    WASHINGTON - The leaders of a congressional inquiry into Russia's efforts to sway the U.S. election are asking the Justice Department to provide information related to President Donald Trump's explosive wiretapping allegation. In a letter sent Wednesday, Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island are... more »
  • Congressman: People might need to choose either healthcare or an iPhone

    March 7, 2017 11:34 AM

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - The fight over healthcare took a powerful turn Tuesday morning when a high-ranking Republican in the U.S. House likened people's decision about healthcare to purchasing the latest gadgets. “A mericans have choices and they've got to make a choice. So maybe rather than getting that new... more »
  • Man accused of threats to congressman's staff due in court

    March 6, 2017 7:47 AM

    ATLANTA - An Atlanta man accused of threatening the staff of U.S. Rep. John Lewis is set to appear in court for a hearing to decide whether he'll continue to be held in custody. The detention hearing for 42-year-old Dante Antoine Rosser is set for 11 a.m. Monday in Atlanta.... more »
  • Record 3 million tweets sent on Trump's speech to Congress

    March 1, 2017 8:08 AM

    WASHINGTON - Twitter says some 3 million tweets were sent about President Donald Trump's speech to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night. The numbers make it the most tweeted speech by a president to Congress in the relatively short history of the platform. The previous mark was 2.6... more »
  • Trump expected to submit budget blueprint on March 13

    February 22, 2017 12:52 PM

    WASHINGTON - Capitol Hill Republicans say the White House is planning to submit President Donald Trump's budget plan to Congress in mid-March. GOP aides say the plan is due on March 14. They're expecting Trump's blueprint to contain fewer details than is typical since it's a new administration and Office... more »
  • Military services detail plans for $30 billion budget boost

    February 7, 2017 7:38 AM

    WASHINGTON - The military services have delivered to Congress blueprints for increasing the defense budget by more than $30 billion to pay for new jet fighters, armored vehicles, improved training and more. The informal plans represent the first attempt by the Trump Pentagon to halt an erosion of the military's... more »
  • Hello? People swamp Congress with calls in era of Trump

    February 3, 2017 9:49 AM

    WASHINGTON - A lot of politics is about the basics, and in Congress that means answering the phone. By that measure, life on Capitol Hill in the Trump era is a struggle. Whether constituents are calling to request congressional flags, get help with a local issue - or, more likely,... more »
  • Ryan says Congress will pay billions for wall

    January 26, 2017 11:29 AM

    WASHINGTON - House Speaker Paul Ryan says President Donald Trump's border wall will cost $12 billion to $15 billion - and Ryan says Congress will pay for it by this fall. The Wisconsin Republican made his comments to reporters in Philadelphia, where GOP lawmakers are holding their annual strategy retreat.... more »
  • House votes to bar funds for abortion coverage

    January 24, 2017 5:43 PM

    WASHINGTON - The House has approved legislation that would permanently bar federal funds for any abortion coverage. The measure, which passed 238-183, would also block tax credits for some people and businesses buying abortion coverage under former President Barack Obama's health care law. Republicans passed a similar bill in 2015... more »
  • $1.2B Louisiana flood aid plan backed by recovery task force

    January 20, 2017 4:38 PM

    LIVINGSTON - Louisiana's flood recovery task force has agreed to Gov. John Bel Edwards' proposal to spend $1.2 billion in federal aid allocated by Congress, with most of the money targeted for homeowners. Under the plan approved Friday, $935 million would pay for rebuilding and repairs for thousands of homeowners... more »
  • C-SPAN online feed interrupted by Russian site

    January 12, 2017 6:03 PM

    WASHINGTON - C-SPAN says its online feed of House floor action was briefly interrupted Thursday by programming for the Russian news site RT. The network says the problem was likely a routing issue, since RT is one of the networks that C-SPAN regularly monitors. Spokesman Howard Mortman says C-SPAN's website... more »
  • Edwards administration defends flood response Play Video

    January 6, 2017 12:11 AM

    BATON ROUGE- Governor Edwards' Administration pushed back against criticism Thursday that it's too slow in responding to the August flood. Friday Edwards will present the state's first disaster relief program 147 days after the storm. "Only twenty of the days have been in the control of the state," said... more »
  • Kansas Congressman's son 'dabs' during swearing-in photo op

    January 4, 2017 11:40 AM

    WASHINGTON - A new Kansas Congressman is dishing out discipline after his 17-year-old son pulled a dance move resembling a sneeze during a photo shoot with House Speaker Paul Ryan after the U.S. House of Representatives swearing-in ceremony at the Capitol. U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall tweeted: "He's grounded." ... more »
  • Republican John Kennedy sworn in as new Louisiana US senator

    January 3, 2017 12:34 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's newest U.S. senator, Republican John Kennedy, has taken the oath of office as the latest term of Congress began. Also sworn in Tuesday were two new U.S. House members for Louisiana's delegation: Republicans Clay Higgins in the southwest Louisiana-based 3rd District and Mike Johnson in the... more »
  • Mike Johnson elected to Louisiana's 4th District

    December 10, 2016 10:54 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Republican Mike Johnson will head to Washington in January to represent Louisiana's 4th Congressional District. The state lawmaker from Benton won Saturday's runoff election for the open seat, defeating Democrat Marshall Jones, a lawyer from Shreveport. Johnson focused on his conservative record, both his decades as a... more »
  • Congress Oks more than $1.25B for Louisiana flood recovery

    December 10, 2016 7:23 PM

    NEW ORLEANS - Congress has approved more than $1.25 billion for Louisiana's flood recovery. The additional allocation approved Friday means Congress has dedicated between $1.8 billion and $1.9 billion, including an initial $438 million in disaster relief funds, for Louisiana's long-term rebuilding. Still, that's short of the at least $2.6... more »
  • Congress averts shutdown, backs spending bill

    December 10, 2016 11:35 AM

    WASHINGTON - Congress has averted a government shutdown - with less than hour to spare. The vote in the Senate late Friday night was 63-36 for a stopgap spending bill that will keep the government operating through April 28. The bill provides disaster relief to Louisiana after summer flooding and... more »
  • Congress OKs biomedical bill, eyes adjournment

    December 7, 2016 3:14 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress has sent President Barack Obama a bipartisan bill speeding government drug approvals and bolstering research on cancer and other diseases. It's part of a final burst of legislation for the 114th Congress, which leaders hope to adjourn for the year by week's end. Lawmakers are also working... more »
  • US Sen. Vitter bids farewell, says he was 'blessed' to serve

    December 5, 2016 5:43 PM

    BATON ROUGE - U.S. Sen. David Vitter called his tenure in Congress "the greatest honor of my professional life," as he gave a farewell speech ahead of the end to his 12-year tenure in the Senate. The Republican incumbent didn't run for a third term, after losing the Louisiana governor's... more »
  • House Democrats re-elect Pelosi as leader

    November 30, 2016 11:54 AM

    WASHINGTON - House Democrats have re-elected Nancy Pelosi as their leader. The California lawmaker, who has led the party since 2002, turned back a challenge from Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan on Wednesday. Her win came despite disenchantment among some in the Democratic caucus over the party's disappointing performance in the... more »
  • Congress backs bill on customer rights for online review

    November 28, 2016 9:57 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress is sending President Barack Obama legislation to ensure that customers who want to post negative reviews on websites like Yelp or TripAdvisor can do so without legal repercussions. The Senate passed the measure by voice vote Monday night. Supporters of the bill say it is needed to... more »
  • Garret Graves wins re-election in 6th district

    November 8, 2016 5:14 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Congressman Garret Graves returns to Washington, D.C. – as expected – having won re-election to the seat he's held since January 2015. Five others campaigned for the seat. Graves won the election with {xx} percent of the vote. Graves originally was elected to Congress in... more »
  • Angelle expected a lock on runoff spot in 3rd District race

    October 29, 2016 4:31 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, the third-place finisher in last year's governor's race, is expected to easily reach the runoff for Louisiana's open 3rd District U.S. House seat in the Nov. 8 election. But it's not clear who he'll face in that December runoff. Angelle, a well-known... more »
  • Senator: Louisiana to get $437M in flood recovery assistance

    October 8, 2016 11:16 AM

    NEW ORLEANS - Sen. Bill Cassidy says Louisiana will get $437 million of the $500 million in flood recovery assistance allocated by Congress. Cassidy announced the news in a press release Friday. Congress approved the $500 million in flood recovery assistance as part of a hybrid spending measure passed in... more »
  • Boustany files suit over book's prostitution claims

    October 3, 2016 6:39 PM

    LAFAYETTE - Congressman Charles Boustany filed a lawsuit Monday against the author of a new book and the book's publishers. Boustany's attorney, Jimmy Faircloth, said a newly-published book about the murder of eight prostitutes in Jennings, Louisiana, falsely accuses Boustany of having a relationship with the women. The suit... more »
  • Congress tied up in partisan knots over the most basic duty

    September 29, 2016 12:54 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress has completed its most elementary task - but only after an intense, weekslong struggle to reach a deal to fund the government just days ahead of a shutdown deadline. The legislation extends existing spending levels a mere 10 weeks, past Election Day, while finally addressing the Zika... more »
  • Congress clears stopgap spending bill, $500 million in flood aid

    September 28, 2016 10:28 PM

    WASHINGTON- Congress is sending President Barack Obama a bill to keep the government operating through Dec. 9 and provide $1.1 billion in long-delayed funding to battle the Zika virus as well as $500 million for Louisiana flood aid. The House cleared the measure by a 342-85 vote just hours after... more »
  • Flood victims to wait for federal aid Play Video

    September 28, 2016 7:32 PM

    BATON ROUGE- As congress is expected to approve $500 million for flood relief in South Louisiana, state leaders say it will take some time for the money to get to victims. "It can take anywhere between five to eight months," said Pat Forbes Monday, the executive director of the... more »
  • Congress praised for early flood aid package, but leaders say more is needed

    September 22, 2016 2:21 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Governor John Bel Edwards praised Congress for its effort to secure up to $500 million for flood relief Thursday, but stressed the need for additional money to help people in flood-ravaged south Louisiana rebuild. The money is made available in a federal, short-term continuing resolution item.... more »
  • Congressional report slams NSA leaker Edward Snowden

    September 15, 2016 4:56 PM

    WASHINGTON - A House intelligence committee report on National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden says he's not a whistleblower and that the vast majority of the documents he stole were military and defense secrets that had nothing to do with Americans' privacy. The committee on Thursday released a three-page unclassified... more »
  • Aides: GOP make offer on Zika holdup; Dems welcome move

    September 15, 2016 2:40 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congressional aides say Republicans are proposing to drop a restriction on Zika-fighting money for Planned Parenthood as negotiators try to reach a deal and adjourn Congress for the fall campaign. Democrats are welcoming the move. It would address their chief complaint to a GOP plan intended to combat... more »
  • Praised by viewers of FEMA hearing feed; Who is Rep. Mica?

    September 9, 2016 11:41 AM

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - People watching WBRZ's Facebook Live feed of the Congressional hearing into FEMA's response to the flood rallied around a Florida lawmaker. "We have to do a better job of meeting our federal responsibility," Congressman John L. Mica (R), said in his closing remarks of the Subcommittee... more »
  • House vote on impeaching IRS chief possible next week

    September 7, 2016 11:08 AM

    WASHINGTON - The House will vote as early as next week on a conservative effort to impeach IRS chief John Koskinen. After House Republicans met privately today for the first time since Congress returned from summer recess, leaders said GOP lawmakers will meet again next week to discuss their next... more »
  • Mayor Kip Holden qualifies for US House race

    July 20, 2016 3:34 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The mayor of Baton Rouge, whose city is embroiled in the aftermath of shootings and protests, has signed up to run for a congressional seat. Kip Holden, a Democrat who is term-limited as mayor, qualified Wednesday for the 2nd District race, challenging Democratic incumbent Cedric Richmond. The... more »
  • Obama urges Congress to pass Zika prevention bill

    July 1, 2016 11:38 AM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says a vaccine for the Zika virus could be developed in "fairly short order" if Congress acts quickly to pass a bill to prevent the spread of the disease. Obama says researchers are beginning to develop and test a vaccine for the mosquito-borne virus. He... more »
  • Washington flummoxed over federal Confederate flag displays

    July 1, 2016 11:30 AM

    WASHINGTON - A year after South Carolina removed the Confederate flag from its capitol grounds, official Washington is struggling with further restrictions on the flag's display on federal property, including the U.S. Capitol complex. The National Park Service, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Army have longstanding guidelines for... more »
  • From cop to Congress? 'Cajun John Wayne' launches campaign Play Video

    May 19, 2016 12:12 AM

    LAFAYETTE - Tough-talking cop Clay Higgins, who became a viral sensation in videos that earned him the moniker "Cajun John Wanye" could have a new title soon- U.S. Congressman. Higgins announced he was running for the 3rd Congressional District seat being vacated by Rep. Charles Boustany (R), who's running... more »
  • Mayor Holden announces candidacy for congress

    May 16, 2016 6:31 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Mayor-President Melvin “Kip” Holden held a press conference on Wednesday to announce his candidacy for Louisiana’s 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives race this week. Holden said back in March that he was “90 percent” sure he was running. Currently democrat Cedric Richmond holds the... more »
  • GOP takes on Library of Congress on immigration terminology

    April 22, 2016 3:28 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress may not be able to overhaul the immigration system, fix the broken tax code or even pass a budget. But it's telling the Library of Congress how to label immigrants living in the country illegally. That's how conservative Republicans are responding to a move by the library... more »
  • GOP Congress' incomplete: Stalled bills, no court nominee

    April 3, 2016 2:56 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress increasingly is being defined by what it's not doing this election year. The Senate returns this week with a strong majority of Republicans saying no to any consideration of President Barack Obama's nominee to the Supreme Court. No hearings, no vote and, for some lawmakers, not even... more »
  • Clinton tries to win New York with her congressional record

    April 1, 2016 1:33 PM

    WASHINGTON - Hillary Clinton will release a $10 billion plan aimed at revitalizing manufacturing in Syracuse on Friday, part of an effort to highlight her work as a senator from New York ahead of that state's primary later this month. The Democratic presidential candidate plans to set off on a... more »
  • Lawmakers criticize plan to allow US dollars to be used in dealings with Iran

    March 31, 2016 5:43 PM

    WASHINGTON - Some critics in Congress say Iran would be getting more than it deserves from last year's nuclear accord, if the administration eases financial restrictions that prohibit U.S. dollars from being used in transactions with that country. No final decision has been made, but officials say it's an idea... more »
  • VA watchdog releases reports on wait-time manipulations

    February 29, 2016 5:44 PM

    WASHINGTON - Reports documenting scheduling problems and wait-time manipulation at the Department of Veterans Affairs are being made public, as the agency's internal watchdog bows to pressure from members of Congress and others to improve transparency. The VA's Office of Inspector General released 11 reports Monday outlining scheduling problems and... more »
  • GOP says no hearings, no votes for Supreme Court nominee

    February 24, 2016 11:14 AM

    WASHINGTON - No hearing. No vote. Don't even bother knocking on our door. That's the message Senate Republicans delivered to President Barack Obama and his sometime-soon nominee for the Supreme Court, an extraordinary election-year rebuff as the GOP insists that replacing Justice Antonin Scalia rests with voters in November's election... more »
  • Apple to tell judge in California case: Congress must decide

    February 23, 2016 4:56 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Associated Press has learned that Apple Inc. will tell a judge this week in legal papers that its fight with the FBI over iPhone encryption should be kicked to Congress, rather than decided by courts. Apple will also argue that a court order to help it hack... more »
  • Supreme Court scuffle triggering a constitutional clash

    February 20, 2016 2:56 PM

    WASHINGTON - It only took one man's death to give Congress the opening to permeate its dysfunction throughout the rest of government. Republican opposition to letting President Barack Obama replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia has sparked a constitutional clash over the president's right to fill Supreme Court vacancies. Democrats... more »
  • US House backs bill requiring EPA notify about lead

    February 10, 2016 3:12 PM

    LANSING, Mich. - The U.S. House has approved legislation to clarify the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to notify the public about danger from lead in their drinking water. The bill is the first approved by Congress to respond to the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. Flint stopped using treated water... more »
  • Obama sends Congress record $4.1 trillion 2017 spending plan

    February 9, 2016 12:25 PM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama is sending Congress his eighth and final budget, proposing to spend a record $4.1 trillion on a number of initiatives. They include launching a new war on cancer, combating global warming and fighting growing threats from ISIS terrorists. The new spending plan, for the budget... more »
  • Lawmakers introduce bill to make women register for draft

    February 4, 2016 2:45 PM

    WASHINGTON - Two Republican congressmen who are military veterans have introduced a bill requiring women to register for the draft. Reps. Duncan Hunter of California and Ryan Zinke of Montana announced Thursday that the legislation is aimed at provoking a fuller discussion of the Pentagon's decision to open all combat... more »
  • Lawmakers anxious to hear from Shkreli, but he's taking 5th

    February 4, 2016 11:30 AM

    WASHINGTON - U.S. lawmakers are anxious to hear from 32-year-old pharmaceutical chief Martin Shkreli about severe hikes for a drug sold by a company that he acquired. But it's unlikely the former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals will answer questions in his appearance Thursday before the House Oversight and Government Reform... more »
  • EPA water chief says Flint crisis was avoidable

    February 3, 2016 12:17 PM

    DETROIT - The acting chief of the Environmental Protection Agency's water office has told Congress that the crisis in Flint caused by lead in drinking water was "avoidable" and that state officials resisted calls to deal with it. Joel Beauvais said Wednesday that EPA's regional staff urged Michigan officials "to... more »
  • Lawmakers propose bill to privatize air traffic control

    February 3, 2016 11:46 AM

    WASHINGTON - Legislation introduced in the House would transfer responsibility for air traffic control operations from the government to a private, nonprofit corporation. That idea is part of an overhaul in how Washington oversees the aviation system. That new federally chartered air traffic control corporation would come under a board... more »
  • Bill would make it harder for sex offenders to travel abroad

    February 1, 2016 7:25 PM

    WASHINGTON - Registered sex offenders who have committed crimes against children will have a harder time traveling internationally under legislation Congress has sent to the president's desk. The House passed the legislation by voice vote Monday after Senate passage in December. If signed by the president, the U.S. would... more »
  • Obama wants $4B to help students learn computer science

    January 30, 2016 2:48 PM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says he'll ask Congress for billions in new spending to help students learn computer science skills. Obama announced the plan in his weekly radio and Internet address on Saturday. He says developing analytical and coding skills is a must for jobs in the new economy.... more »
  • South Carolina Senate committee OKs bill to track refugees

    January 27, 2016 4:01 PM

    COLUMBIA - A bill requiring state police to track refugees coming to South Carolina and to hold their sponsors liable for damages if they commit an act of terrorism is on its way to the floor of the state Senate. A Senate committee approved the measure on Wednesday. A spokesman... more »
  • Drug abuse bill raises hopes for election-year achievement

    January 27, 2016 3:58 PM

    WASHINGTON - There's a glimmer of hope that a bill aimed at fighting heroin and opioid addiction will let Congress claim an achievement this election year, despite the likelihood that lawmakers will gridlock over most other issues. Bills in both the Senate and House creating grants to combat abuse and... more »
  • Price-hiking pharma exec Martin Shkreli gets House subpoena

    January 20, 2016 4:42 PM

    WASHINGTON - House lawmakers have issued a subpoena to compel former Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli, reviled for price-gouging, to appear at a congressional hearing next Tuesday. An aide to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform confirmed the news Wednesday. The committee is investigating several companies for exorbitant... more »
  • McConnell: No intention of pushing for new war powers vote

    January 10, 2016 2:57 PM

    WASHINGTON - Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he has no intention of pushing lawmakers to approve President Barak Obama's request for new war powers to fight the Islamic State group. He says he fears it could "tie the hands" of the next president. The Obama administration has proposed a... more »
  • House may vote next week on North Korea sanctions bill

    January 7, 2016 1:10 PM

    WASHINGTON - The House of Representatives will vote as early as next week on legislation imposing new sanctions on North Korea. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California promised Thursday there will be strong bipartisan support for the measure. It comes after the authoritarian regime drew international condemnation by boasting of... more »
  • GOP-led panel passes bill for oversight of Iran nuclear deal

    January 7, 2016 11:57 AM

    WASHINGTON - The GOP-led House Foreign Affairs Committee has approved legislation that would give Congress greater oversight of the landmark nuclear deal with Iran. Passage of the bill comes with the United States poised to begin lifting sanctions against Iran as Tehran fulfills its obligations under the July 14 agreement.... more »
  • Top Democrat says no evidence of NSA spying on lawmakers

    January 7, 2016 11:53 AM

    WASHINGTON - A key House Democrat says there's no evidence that the intelligence community was spying on members of Congress. That follows a report saying the National Security Agency swept up some conversations with members of Congress in the course of spying on Israel. Congressman Adam Schiff of California is... more »
  • Obama plugs final State of Union address on new video

    January 6, 2016 5:50 PM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says his final State of the Union address will focus on the "big things" he thinks will make the country stronger and more prosperous. The White House on Wednesday released a brief video of Obama sitting on top of his Oval Office desk and talking... more »
  • House vote to send health law repeal to Obama for first time

    January 6, 2016 1:28 PM

    WASHINGTON - After dozens of failed attempts to undo President Barack Obama's health care law, the GOP-led Congress will finally put a bill on the president's desk Wednesday striking at the heart of his signature legislative achievement. Obama will veto the bill, and so the ultimate outcome will be... more »

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