Over 400 former EPA staff members sent a letter to the U.S. Senate asking its members to reject the nomination of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as the agency’s new administrator, saying “he has shown no interest in enforcing environmental laws.”
A Trump court could conceivably outlaw abortion altogether, which would take us into new political (and medical) terrain. You doubt that would happen? Let’s hope you’re right. But the tides of ultraconservative authoritarianism are rising, and those high waters will change the landscape, especially for women.
Our light, illuminating a separate branch of government, is not yet extinguished. Under the Dome, Congress is scurrying to find its place in the presidential matrix. As disempowered as minority Democrats are, Republicans are wandering the wilderness, too. The establishment lost the election. In politics, which operates on a thousand personal bonds, Donald Trump is an unknown.
Republicans have spent decades weaponizing the Supreme Court as a political tool and are on the brink of a payoff that Trump’s creditors never could have imagined. But they also did something dangerous: They proved there is no price for creative obstruction. Democrats need to understand they have the people on their side. And to keep them there, they have to be willing to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous obstruction. Our democracy depends on it.
The Minnesota senator slammed Republicans for attempting to recast their colleague as a voting rights champion. “I know Senator Sessions. We served together since I joined this body… and I know his record on voting rights,” Franken bellowed. “He’s no champion of voting rights.”
The Senate should have seated Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, and then turned to Trump’s nominees as vacancies occurred. Never forget that Senate Republicans, led by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have stolen an open seat that would have tilted the court’s balance away from a right-wing majority.
The boycott in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee delayed the transition to a new administrator for the agency. Senator Ben Cardin, a Democrat, said he could not support Pruitt, a Republican and the attorney general of Oklahoma, because he “denies the sum of empirical science and the urgency to act on climate change.”
Democrats stayed away from the meeting for a second day running, which under the committee’s rules normally would have prevented the votes from taking place. But Republicans voted to suspend the rule that had required at least one Democrat to be present for business to be conducted, sending the nominations to the full Senate for a vote.
Judge Gorsuch, despite a reportedly mild-mannered temperament, is known for his anti-choice and anti-LGBT stances, pro-employer rulings in labor disputes, anti-regulatory attitudes, dismissal of scientific expertise, and pro-police bias in brutality cases, according to statements from public interest groups issued after the announcement.
The U.S. Senate panel tasked with vetting Andrew Puzder to head the Labor Department has postponed its tentative plans to hold his confirmation hearing yet again, a move that some political strategists say could signal trouble for the fast-food executive.
A source involved in the selection process said Trump has made his choice between two conservative U.S. appeals court judges — Neil Gorsuch and Thomas Hardiman. Adding an element of drama to what is normally a sober announcement, CNN said both finalists, Gorsuch and Hardiman, had been brought to Washington ahead of Tuesday’s announcement.
The Senate voted 93 to 6 to confirm Elaine Chao as head of the U.S. Transportation Department, which overseas aviation, vehicle, train, and pipeline safety. Chao, a former U.S. labor secretary and deputy transportation secretary, will face key decisions on how to regulate the growing use of drones and automakers’ plans to offer self-driving cars.
Senate Democrats said they were postponing the vote because they wanted more information on Price’s stock trades in an Australian medical company and needed more details on reports that Mnuchin’s former bank, OneWest, used automated “robo-signings” of foreclosure documents, which contradicted statements the nominees had made to senators.
President Trump’s cabinet is worth a combined $14 billion, and they are catching flack in recent weeks for confessing an inability to keep track of their vast sums of wealth. Private bankers who work with the ultra rich say that if they had a dollar for every time a client forgot about a million, they would be, well, almost as rich as their clients.
“After being briefed on so many of the vital functions of the Department of Energy, I regret recommending its elimination,” the former Texas governor said in his opening remarks during his confirmation hearing. Perry’s proposal to get rid of the Energy Department caused what has become known as his “oops” moment during a 2011 Republican presidential candidate debate.
Diverging from Trump’s stated aim of seeking closer ties with Russia, Pompeo said that Russia is “asserting itself aggressively” by invading and occupying Ukraine, threatening Europe, and “doing nearly nothing” to destroy Islamic State.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said he had a very high level of confidence that Russia hacked Democratic Party institutions and operatives, as well as disseminating propaganda and fake news aimed at the Nov. 8 election.
The most powerful Democrat in Washington issued a stern warning to President-elect Donald Trump as Congress returned to work on Tuesday. Senator Chuck Schumer’s combative remarks on the Senate floor, his inaugural speech as minority leader, signal there will be little in the way of bipartisan cooperation under President Trump.
Despite his promise to unite a deeply divided country, Trump will be sworn in on Jan. 20 leading a Republican Party that early on will push legislation through Congress without significant – or any – Democratic support.
Three great Democratic players are taking their last bows. Their vigorous voices will be missed in the fight against President Trump. There’s nobody quite like this trifecta, all proudly from humble origins.
There are two Americas. Women leaned toward Clinton. Black women were her strongest supporters. But men elected Trump — meaning mostly white men, with some help from Latinos. Sex, power and privilege. That’s the deep story of this election.