As President Donald Trump goes to Capitol Hill tonight for his first address to a Joint Session of Congress, both parties fully expect him to again sound the call for action on a repeal of the Obama health law, though GOP lawmakers in Congress admit they still don’t have an internal agreement on how best to replace the Obama health law.
Back from a ten day break, the U.S. Senate on Monday evening easily approved President Donald Trump’s nominee for Commerce Secretary, but Democrats again made clear they would not allow swift action on several other Trump Cabinet nominees, as Republicans again protested the extended delays.
The accounting firm responsible for tallying Oscar votes and keeping up with envelopes containing the winners has apologized for the Best Picture gaffe at the end of Sunday’s Academy Awards, but President Donald Trump believes the mix-up was actually about him.
Forced by opponents to hold votes after midnight, GOP leaders held the support of just enough Republican and Democrats to give final Congressional approval to a two year bipartisan budget deal, as lawmakers backed away from a possible U.S. government default.
As in the House, there was a majority of Republicans who voted against the deal, led this time by some of those running for President, as Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) rushed back from this week’s debate to denounce the plan on the floor of the Senate.
Cruz, meanwhile, launched another blistering attack on his party’s leadership in the Congress, attacking Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on the Senate floor, and accusing him of being the leader of the other party.
“The Majority Leader disputes the characterization that he is the most effective Democratic leader modern times have seen,” Cruz said.
As he did after a Cruz attack earlier this year, where Cruz called McConnell a liar on the floor of the Senate, the GOP Leader did not respond.
The budget deal now goes to President Obama for his signature.
The plan would funnel $80 billion more into the federal budget over the next two years, divided evenly between the military and domestic spending.
The Congressional Budget Office found the extra spending would be fully offset through a series of savings and entitlement reforms; opponents say it’s nothing but budget gimmicks.
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog.
A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.