Archive for the ‘ U.S. Senate ’ Category

Politico: Democrats eye $10M loan to boost campaigns


Democrats believe that the election outcome remains unpredictable just 46 days out.

By JOHN BRESNAHAN | 9/19/14 5:41 PM EDT Updated: 9/19/14 9:05 PM EDT

House Democrats are considering taking out a $10 million loan to help fund TV ads and get-out-the-vote operations in the run-up to Election Day, according to Democratic sources.

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WashPost: Reid: If midterms were today, Democrats would hold the Senate


By Wesley Lowery
September 16, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid refused to entertain a scenario in which Democrats lose control of the Senate in November’s midterm elections, telling reporters Tuesday, “We’re doing fine.”

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The Atlantic: All the Reasons Democrats Are Screwed This November

The Atlantic

Russell Berman
Associated Press
Sep 14, 2014 10:00AM ET / 2014 Midterms

As the 2014 midterm election campaign heats up, all indications are that Democrats are headed for a trouncing at the hands of Republicans.

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SacBee: Field Poll: Views of Congress remain in the doldrums

U.S. Capitol

By Christopher Cadelago
Published: Saturday, Sep. 13, 2014 – 12:00 am

California voters continue to harbor exceedingly negative views of the work conducted by Congress and, in a major development, feelings about their own House representatives have turned sour, according to the latest Field Poll.

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The Hill: Dems do damage control on immigration

The Hill

By Mike Lillis – 09/08/14 05:29 PM EDT

Democrats are in damage-control mode in the wake of the White House decision to postpone executive action on immigration until after November’s elections.

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RollCall: Rothenberg: Senate GOP Gains At Least 7 Seats


Roll Call Logo

By Stuart Rothenberg
Posted at 2:50 p.m. on Sept. 8, 2014

While the current Rothenberg Political Report ratings don’t show it, I am now expecting a substantial Republican Senate wave in November, with a net gain of at least seven seats.

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RollCall: The 10 ‘Poorest’ Members of Congress for 2014 (Video)

No Money

Roll Call Logo

By Steven Dennis
Posted at 9 p.m. on Sept. 7, 2014

Roll Call’s annual list of the 10 “poorest” members of Congress contains one majority whip, one party chairman, one formerly impeached judge and one senator.

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SFChronicle: Barbara Boxer re-election run looking unlikely

Barbara Boxer

Sen. Barbara Boxer, up for re-election in 2016, has less than $200,000 in her campaign account. (Photo: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle)

Phillip Matier And Andrew Ross
Updated 3:02 am, Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sen. Barbara Boxer says she has yet to make up her mind about seeking a fifth term in 2016, but there’s no shortage of signs that the Democrat may be opting out.

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By Matea Gold
September 2, 2014 at 12:00 AM

Andrew Sabin gave Republicans so much money in 2012 that he accidentally went over a limit on how much individuals could donate to federal candidates and party committees.

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Reuters: Obama unloads on Republicans, sees ‘cynical genius’

NEWPORT R.I. Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:52pm EDT

(Reuters) – Obama, raising money for Democratic candidates as Republicans aim to take over the Senate in the fall, on Friday blamed some Republicans for a calculated effort to undermine faith in government by opposing policy compromises.

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NationalJournal: Soros, Steyer Spend Big in Bid to Rescue Democrats’ Majority

National Journal

Financial reports filed this week detail the people—almost all of them men—who gave the most money to super PACs last month.

By Scott Bland and Adam Wollner
August 22, 2014

Super PACs spent July beefing up for the fall campaign. Many groups filed new disclosure reports this week, leaving a paper trail littered with big checks from big names.

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WashPost: Why so many Americans hate politics

I Hate Politics

By Dan Balz, Chief correspondent
August 23, 2014 at 11:00 PM

In a time of political polarization, one thing still unites left, right and center: the disdain people have for Washington, their elected leaders and the political system.

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Politico: McConnell’s plan to shut down Obama


By MANU RAJU | 8/20/14 5:07 AM EDT Updated: 8/20/14 7:29 PM EDT

HENDERSON, Ky. — Mitch McConnell has a game plan to confront President Barack Obama with a stark choice next year: Accept bills reining in the administration’s policies or veto them and risk a government shutdown.

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Politico: Poll: Reelection rating at 20-year low



By JONATHAN TOPAZ | 8/18/14 6:17 AM EDT

Less than 20 percent of voters believe most members of Congress deserve reelection, on track for the lowest mark in at least two decades, a new poll says.

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By Philip Rucker, Robert Costa and Matea Gold
August 9, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Ask voters in North Carolina’s Research Triangle what November’s midterm elections are about and one will tell you drones. A second will say closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Yet another, the middle-class squeeze.

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WashPost: GOP lawmakers follow the money — to California

California Money

Al Kamen
By Al Kamen and Colby Itkowitz August 6 at 7:21 PM

If you’re forced to spend a weekend hobnobbing with donors, do it up right. And don’t host the event in your district (where the local economy could surely use the boost). Go somewhere fabulous.

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AP: 5 things to know from the AP-GfK poll on politics


Associated Press
Aug 7, 2014 – 3:04 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The latest Associated Press-GfK poll finds the nation dissatisfied with what Congress and President Barack Obama have done lately, and few expect much more after the midterm elections. Here’s a look at five things to know from the poll.

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TIME: Obama’s Approval Rating at All-Time Low in New Poll


Denver Nicks @DenverNicks
Aug. 5, 2014

President Barack Obama’s approval ratings have dipped to a new low—40%—according to a new poll released Tuesday.

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From left, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), President Obama and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). The outlook is grim for Obama nominees awaiting confirmation from the Senate, which went into recess Friday. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

By Al Kamen and Colby Itkowitz
August 4, 2014 at 6:23 PM

High anxiety is gripping scores of Obama administration nominees who were left dangling above the Senate floor as that distinguished body took off for a five-week recess. (That’s vacation for most of the lawmakers and nonstop campaigning for a few facing tight races.)

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A busy screen is shown on the laptop of a Certified Application Counselor as he attempted to enroll an interested person for Affordable Care Act insurance in Miami


Three months before the mid-term elections, political operatives and activists are groping for an anti-Obamacare message that sticks — or 57 of them.

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NYTimes: Congress Off for the Exits, but Few Cheer

U.S. Capitol

AUG. 1, 2014

WASHINGTON — House and Senate lawmakers scrambled to leave town on Friday night for a five-week recess, with a failure to address the refugee crisis at the southern border only the latest indignity in a year that may redefine congressional dysfunction.

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LATimes: CIA apologizes, admits it improperly searched Senate computers


By Kathleen Hennessey
July 31, 2014

The CIA acknowledged Thursday that its employees had secretly searched Senate computer files related to an investigation of the agency’s Bush-era harsh interrogation program, apologized to key senators and abandoned its previous insistence that it had done nothing wrong.

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Politico: Political shakeup looms in California

California Democrats

From top left, clockwise: Jerry Brown, Dianne Feinstein, Barbara Boxer, Antonio Villaraigosa, Gavin Newsom and Kamala Harris are pictured in this composite. | Getty


By ALEXANDER BURNS | 7/20/14 5:29 PM EDT – Updated: 7/21/14 6:37 AM EDT

LOS ANGELES — The rumblings are early but unmistakable: A political earthquake is — finally — headed to California.

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By Dustin Volz
July 20, 2014

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein thoroughly condemned Russian President Vladimir Putin for his role in empowering Ukraine’s pro-Russian separatists, during an interview with CNN on Sunday, largely laying the blame at his feet for the downing last week of a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet.

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The Hill: Immigration reform fizzles as campaign issue for Democrats


The Hill

By Alexander Bolton – 07/12/14 06:00 AM EDT

Immigration reform has fizzled as an issue for Democrats, who are barely mentioning it on the campaign trail despite making the issue their top domestic priority in 2013 and 2014.

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Reuters: Fed independence questioned as Republicans ramp up pressure

The facade of the U.S. Federal Reserve building is reflected on wet marble during the early morning hours in Washington

The facade of the U.S. Federal Reserve building is reflected on wet marble during the early morning hours in Washington, July 31, 2013. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

By Michael Flaherty and Alistair Bell
WASHINGTON Thu Jul 10, 2014 4:02am EDT

(Reuters) – A surge of Republican pressure is bringing the Federal Reserve’s long-held independence into question again, as conservative lawmakers seek to place the U.S. central bank under tougher scrutiny.

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Politico: Behind Harry Reid’s war against the Koch brothers


By KENNETH P. VOGEL | 7/7/14 9:00 PM EDT Updated: 7/8/14 5:41 AM EDT

At first, it seemed like just another example of Harry Reid being Harry Reid.

The Senate majority leader, whose unscripted attacks can veer into bellicosity and take liberties with facts, spoke on the Senate floor last October and appeared to blame billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch for the government shutdown.

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LATimes: Democrats’ Senate majority hinges on rallying key voting blocs


President Obama’s diminished popularity and recurring questions about government competence have been a drag thus far on Democratic candidates, polls show.

Michael A. Memoli
July 4, 2014

Democrats headed into the Fourth of July recess facing stiff head winds in their quest to maintain a Senate majority this fall, contending with voters’ unease over the economy and a slew of Washington controversies.

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LATimes: Gallup poll: Confidence in Supreme Court falls to 30%

Gallup Poll - Gov't 06302104

There was time when a majority of Americans were confident in their Supreme Court, but those positive feelings have been eroding in the last quarter of a century so that just 30% now say they have confidence in the institution, according to a Gallup poll.

Michael Muskal
June 30, 2014

The poll, released Monday, had good news and bad news for the high court, a unique institution that serves as a check and balance in the United States. People have more confidence in the court than in any other arm of government, but that may not be saying that much when confidence in the presidency stands at 29% and in the Congress at 7%.

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Politico: Takeaways from a wild primary night



By JAMES HOHMANN | 6/25/14 1:16 AM EDT Updated: 6/25/14 7:22 AM EDT

Tuesday night was bad for Democrats, good for the GOP establishment and great for incumbents of both parties.

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Politico: Harry Reid’s new challenge: His fellow Democrats

Senate Democrats Address Press After Weekly Policy Luncheon

Senate Majorirty Leader Harry Reid is pictured. | Getty


By MANU RAJU and BURGESS EVERETT | 6/23/14 11:26 PM EDT Updated: 6/24/14 5:26 AM EDT

Harry Reid has a new dilemma on his hands: restless Senate Democrats who are frustrated they aren’t casting enough votes.

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NationalJournal: What a GOP Senate Would Mean for Obamacare


Full repeal is impossible, but the GOP could do some real damage to the Affordable Care Act.

National Journal

Health Care

By Sam Baker
June 23, 2014

A Republican Senate majority wouldn’t be able to fully repeal Obamacare, but it could force some pretty significant changes to the health care law.

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U.S. Capitol

The Fix
By Philip Bump
June 20, 2014

Gallup released a new poll on Thursday revealing that only seven percent of Americans have any real confidence in Congress. It’s an historic low, and probably one that 93 percent of Americans think is still higher than it should be.

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LATimes: Republicans blame Obama policies for immigration crisis on border


Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Richard Simon
June 19, 2014

Republicans are challenging the president’s characterization of the surge in young immigrants from Central America across the southern border as an unforeseen crisis, accusing his administration of contributing to the influx and demanding that he deploy National Guard troops and other resources to secure the border.

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By Ashley Halsey III June 18 at 2:33 PM

A bipartisan Senate proposal emerged Wednesday to rescue beleaguered federal transportation funding by raising the tax on gasoline by 12 cents a gallon.

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Politico: Dianne Feinstein: I seem to be out of the loop now


By BURGESS EVERETT | 6/9/14 8:26 PM EDT – Updated: 6/10/14 6:28 AM EDT

She stood beside President Barack Obama through the politically damaging revelations over NSA data-mining, but Dianne Feinstein can’t seem to stay on the White House’s call list.

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WashPost: Feinstein, Chambliss criticize White House over Bergdahl secrecy

By Josh Hicks
June 8, 2014 at 11:58 am

The heads of the Senate Intelligence Committee suggested Sunday that the White House has done a poor job of sharing information with Congress about Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl and his recent release from Taliban captivity.

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Politico: Dianne Feinstein: No threat to Bergdahl

Senate Democrats Speak To The Media After Their Weekly Policy Luncheon

Feinstein says the administration is obligated to investigate Bergdahl’s capture. | Getty

By JONATHAN TOPAZ | 6/6/14 1:32 PM EDT

Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein said she has not seen any evidence that the Taliban would have killed Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl if details of an agreement had leaked, contrary to what Obama administration officials have said.

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Politico: White House braced for Bowe Bergdahl backlash


By EDWARD-ISAAC DOVERE and CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN | 6/4/14 7:07 PM EDT Updated: 6/5/14 10:31 AM EDT

President Barack Obama’s Rose Garden appearance Saturday afternoon with Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s parents was an attempt to humanize the prisoner swap to deflect potential criticism of letting five Taliban leaders out of Guantánamo Bay, White House aides say.

It didn’t work.

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Carolyn Lochhead

Posted on Tuesday, June 3 at 2:43pm | By Carolyn Lochhead

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee, told reporters Tuesday that she got a call from the White House apologizing for not letting Congress know about its exchange of Taliban prisoners for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, a prisoner of Afghan rebels since 2009.

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Politico: Dems give big to Senate Majority PAC


Nine sitting Democratic senators have plowed a total of $1.4 million


Updated: 6/3/14 10:16 AM EDT

Majority Leader Harry Reid and his caucus are bent on outlawing billionaire Koch-style political spending.

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National Journal

NJ Daily
By Michael Catalini
May 21, 2014

A senior Democratic senator suggested Wednesday that President Obama’s race factored into opposition to the Affordable Care Act, sparking outrage on the part of one of his Republican colleagues.

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The Hill: Reid wants a no-surprises Senate

The Hill

By Alexander Bolton – 05/17/14 12:59 PM EDT

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) wants to decide what Senate floor amendments Republicans can offer to guard against “gotcha” votes that could cost Democrats their majority.

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LATimes: Standoff on U.S. roadway repairs becoming ‘highway cliff’

Highway Construction

Kathleen Hennessey, Michael A. Memoli
May 15, 2014

Without quick action by Congress, the U.S. Transportation Department may begin scaling back or halting work on thousands of roads, bridges and other infrastructure projects at the height of the construction season this July, when the nation’s Highway Trust Fund is expected to run dry.

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May 5, 2014, 1:46pm PDT
Kathy Robertson
Senior Staff Writer- Sacramento Business Journal

Almost two years since the U.S. Supreme Court approved the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act, the Sacramento-based Pacific Legal Foundation gets a shot in appeals court this week at unwinding the mandate based on how it was enacted.

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David Lauter
Monday, May 5, 2014

Six months out from the November midterm election, Republicans have a strong advantage which, if it holds up, would likely translate into significant gains in Congress, a new nationwide survey indicates.

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RollCall: Another Ugly Poll for Obama

Roll Call Logo

By Steven Dennis
Posted at 12:21 p.m. on May 5, 2014

These aren’t the poll results President Barack Obama is looking for. A new USA Today/Pew poll has ugly numbers for the president’s Democratic Party ahead of the midterm elections and even uglier figures for the president.

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Reuters: Senator Reid opens door to Keystone pipeline vote

Reid answers questions from reporters after the weekly Republican caucus luncheon at the U.S. Capitol in Washington

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) answers questions from reporters after the weekly Republican caucus luncheon at the U.S. Capitol in Washington March 11, 2014. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

By Timothy Gardner and Thomas Ferraro
WASHINGTON Tue Apr 29, 2014 8:15pm EDT

(Reuters) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, in an abrupt election-year shift in strategy, opened the possibility on Tuesday of allowing a vote on congressional approval of the long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline.

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Barack Obama

President Obama’s approval rating fell to 41 percent, down from 46 percent through the first three months of the year and the lowest of his presidency in Washington Post (ABC News polls. Charles Dharapak/AP)

By Dan Balz and Peyton M. Craighill
Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Democrats face serious obstacles as they look to the November elections, with President Obama’s approval rating at a new low and a majority of voters saying they prefer a Congress in Republican hands to check the president’s agenda, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

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McClatchy: Trouble for Democrats: More Senate seats are at risk

U.S. Capitol

The Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Tish Wells – McClatchy)

By David Lightman
McClatchy Washington Bureau
April 18, 2014

WASHINGTON — Democrats are finding that their path to keeping control of the U.S. Senate this year is getting bumpier.

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Politico: John Boehner hails Supreme Court ruling

John Boehner Holds Media Briefing At The Capitol

John Boehner is pictured. | Getty


By JAKE SHERMAN | 4/2/14 10:41 AM EDT

Speaker John Boehner praised the Supreme Court for knocking down aggregate limits on campaign donations, saying “freedom of speech is being upheld.”

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NationalJournal: Buckle Up for More Gridlock

National Journal

Off to the Races
Majority status in the Senate could swerve back and forth over the next few elections.

By Charlie Cook
March 31, 2014

By a quirk of fate, we may be in for some pretty turbulent Senate elections, not only this November but in 2016 and 2018 as well. Majority status could resemble a rubber band as much as anything else. It is entirely plausible that the Senate will tip back into GOP hands in 2014, return to Democrats in 2016, and then flip again to Republicans in 2018. It’s all about how many—and which—seats on each side are up and exposed to losses, not to mention whether it is a presidential or midterm election. Obviously other factors could come into play, chiefly the political environment over the next four years, but also what the presidential tickets will look like in 2016, who will be in the White House come 2018, and how that person is doing.

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The Democratic Party is tackling a historical weakness: the failure of Democratic voters to show up for midterm elections.

By Michael A. Memoli and David Lauter
March 31, 2014, 3:00 a.m.

WASHINGTON — Faced with a strong prospect of losing control of the Senate in November, Democrats have begun a high-stakes effort to try to overcome one of their party’s big weaknesses: voters who don’t show up for midterm elections.

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National Journal

By Alex Roarty
March 30, 2014

Bracing for a rough midterm-election outcome, Democrats aren’t waiting until Election Day to start blaming one another for the party’s problems. Anticipating the possibility that Republicans will flip the Senate, the finger-pointing game is already underway between the party’s warring factions.

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The Hill: Poll: Dems missing mark with swing voters

The Hill

By Alexander Bolton
03/30/14 02:00 PM EDT

A new political advocacy group has teamed up with former Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) to argue that the economic inequality agenda of Senate Democrats is a loser with swing voters.

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RollCall: Unemployment Extension Vote Not Worrying House Republicans

By Daniel Newhauser
Roll Call Staff
March 26, 2014, 5 a.m.

Reid, left, plans to bring the bipartisan unemployment benefits extension to the Senate floor soon. In the House, Boehner and his fellow Republicans plan to hold out for more concessions from Democrats.

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WashPost: DSCC pushes back against Nate Silver


By Sean Sullivan
March 24 at 4:00 am

Senate Democrats’ campaign arm is pushing back against data modeling whiz Nate Silver, who projects that Republicans are now favored to win the Senate majority.

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Politico: President Obama: ‘In midterms, we get clobbered’


By TAL KOPAN | 3/21/14 7:58 AM EDT

President Barack Obama told Democratic donors that Democrats tend to “get clobbered” in midterm elections, and in order to win in November they need to turn out the vote.

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NYTimes: Democrats Plan Ads in Challenge to Koch Brothers


MARCH 21, 2014

WASHINGTON — Senate Majority PAC, a group that supports Democratic Senate candidates, is preparing a $3 million advertising campaign against Charles G. Koch and David H. Koch, the libertarian-minded billionaire brothers who support conservative causes and have already poured millions of dollars into the 2014 midterm elections.

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Dan Balz

By Dan Balz
Wednesday, March 19, 2014

If President Obama’s 2012 campaign was known for anything, it was its voter mobilization operation, said to be the most sophisticated ever assembled in a presidential campaign. Which makes David Plouffe’s comments over the weekend all the more telling for Democrats as they look nervously toward the November midterm elections.

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Politico: The rich strike back

Rich Strike Back

From top left, clockwise: Bill de Blasio, Barack Obama, Elizabeth Warren, Dave Camp, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz are shown around a sign on Wall Street in this composite. | Getty Images



NEW YORK — Just a few months ago, it looked like 2014 would be the year of the populist, with Democrats running on economic inequality, tea party Republicans bashing banks and newly minted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio pledging to soak the rich with higher taxes.

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RollCall: Feinstein Shifts Slow-Burning Anger From Guns to Spies

David Hawkings

By David Hawkings
Posted at 5:50 p.m. on March 12

Few senators wait until their 80s, or the start of their third decade in office, to have their breakout moment. But that’s what this past year has been for Dianne Feinstein.

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Dianne Feinstein

U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein

By Donna Cassata, Associated Press
Posted: 03/11/14, 8:21 AM PDT | Updated: 20 secs ago

WASHINGTON — The head of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Tuesday the CIA improperly searched a stand-alone computer network established for Congress in its investigation of allegations of CIA abuse in a Bush-era detention and interrogation program. She said the CIA’s own inspector general has referred the matter to the Justice Department.

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DailyBulletin: Candidates file documents to run in the June primary

Elections 2014

By Beau Yarbrough, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
and Joe Nelson, The Sun
Posted: 03/07/14, 9:48 PM PST |

San Bernardino >> Friday was the filing deadline for candidates vying for seats at the state and local levels for the June 3 primary election.

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LATimes: McConnell says liberal California billionaire just like the Kochs

On politics in the Golden State
By Evan Halper
March 4, 2014, 1:45 p.m.

WASHINGTON — As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid resumed his polemic against the Koch brothers Tuesday, Republicans were quick to respond, noting they are not the only ones with a generous billionaire in their corner.

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WashPost: Senate primaries test GOP establishment, insurgent wings


The Take
By Dan Balz
Sunday, March 2, 2014

The tea party movement celebrated its fifth anniversary this past week, but there’s been little to celebrate lately about the performance of some of the conservatives running under the tea party banner who have mounted primary challenges to half a dozen Senate Republicans.

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LATimes: Feinstein laments retirements of those who ‘get it done’ in Congress

By Seema Mehta
February 20, 2014, 7:00 a.m.

Without offering a hint as to her plans, Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Wednesday lamented the departure of longtime congressional colleagues from California — including retiring Reps. Henry Waxman and George Miller –and said their institutional knowledge and ability to compromise in Washington would be missed.

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LATimes: Sen. Dianne Feinstein defends NSA and need for intelligence gathering

By Seema Mehta
February 19, 2014, 10:19 p.m.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) offered a full-throated defense of the government’s collection of data on billions of American phone calls, saying Wednesday that the National Security Agency’s practices have safeguarded the nation without trampling on civil liberties.

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LATimes: Senate clears debt ceiling bill in dramatic vote

Debt Limit

By Lisa Mascaro
February 12, 2014, 1:59 p.m.

WASHINGTON — Congress gave final approval Wednesday to legislation allowing more federal borrowing to pay the nation’s bills, ending the last three years of partisan brinkmanship over the debt limit, but not without a last-minute protest led by tea party Republicans in the Senate.

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The Hill: Election mode hits the Capitol

The Hill

Greg Nash
By Alexander Bolton – 02/12/14 06:00 AM EST

Democrats and Republicans are clearing the decks of dangerous political issues that could sink their chances in the midterm elections.

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NationalJournal: Feds: NSA ‘Probably’ Spies on Members of Congress


The admission is hardly surprising, but expect lawmakers to feign outrage anyway.

National Journal

By Dustin Volz
February 4, 2014

The National Security Agency “probably” collects phone records of members of Congress and their staffs, a senior Justice Department official conceded Tuesday.

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Politico: Senate Democrats break from Obama


By BURGESS EVERETT | 2/2/14 11:04 PM EST

President Barack Obama is counting on Senate Democrats to help approve his legislative agenda during his final years in office. And though they are his staunchest allies on most economic issues, many Democratic senators are breaking with him on key issues in very public ways.

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The Hill: Senate Dems put off jobless benefits

Harry Reid

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) (Photo by Greg Nash)

By Alexander Bolton – 01/28/14 06:00 AM EST

Senate Democrats are dropping the issue of extending federal unemployment benefits — at least for now — despite intense lobbying over the recess by outside groups targeting Republicans.

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WashPost: Poll finds little faith in nation’s leaders

By Dan Balz and Peyton M. Craighill
January 26, 2014

President Obama will speak to the nation Tuesday night with approval ratings lower than for any of his previous State of the Union addresses and with Americans broadly pessimistic that he or lawmakers of either party will make good decisions for the future of the country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

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LATimes: Despite an improving economy, Obama’s approval rating stays low


President Obama speaks during a Cabinet meeting. The president’s job approval rating has fallen to the 40% range, suggesting many voters do not feel they’ve benefited from the economy’s steady growth. (Mandel Ngan / AFP/Getty Images / January 14, 2014)

By Mark Z. Barabak
January 19, 2014, 6:34 p.m.

The stock market has hit sky-scraping highs, the unemployment rate has dipped to a five-year low and any number of economic statistics — new car sales, home prices, consumer spending — point to a perked-up economy that is steadily growing.

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WashPost: Congress set to pass $1.1 trillion spending plan

U.S. Capitol

By Ed O’Keefe
Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Congress is on the verge of adopting a federal budget this week without the threat of a government shutdown or any other form of economic or political crisis, a development so unusual that the institution suddenly does not resemble its most recent partisan self.

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LATimes: Supreme Court hints it may limit president’s recess appointment power

U.S. President Barack Obama have lunch with five young people at The Coupe restaurant - DC

Based on oral arguments Monday at the Supreme Court, the justices may be preparing to limit a president’s ability to fill high-level vacancies during Senate recesses. Above, President Obama last week at a lunch with young people. (Olivier Douliery / MCT / January 10, 2014)

By David G. Savage This post has been corrected. See below for details.
January 13, 2014, 11:52 a.m.

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court hinted Monday it may move to limit a presidential power used since the days of George Washington to fill high-level vacancies during Senate recesses.

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U.S. Capitol

Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images – The massive $1.1 trillion spending bill would fund federal agencies through the rest of the fiscal year.

By Lori Montgomery and Ed O’Keefe
Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Congressional negotiators unveiled a $1.1 trillion funding bill late Monday that would ease sharp spending cuts known as the sequester while providing fresh cash for new priorities, including President Obama’s push to expand early-childhood education.

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RollCall: A Balance of Powers Case With Senate GOP Power in the Balance

Roll Call

Hawkings Here

By David Hawkings
Posted at 8 p.m. on Jan. 12

One of the biggest congressional stories of the decade starts unfolding Monday — not at the Capitol, but across the street.

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The Hill: Democrats plead with Obama to abandon Social Security cut

The Hill

By Alexander Bolton – 01/11/14 12:00 PM EST

Democratic senators are pleading with President Obama to abandon his proposal to trim Social Security benefits before it becomes a liability for them in the midterm elections.

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Reuters: Unemployment benefits extension stalls in Senate

Unemployment Benefits Application

By Richard Cowan
WASHINGTON Thu Jan 9, 2014 7:20pm EST

(Reuters) – Senate Democrats on Thursday offered a new plan to revive federal unemployment benefits until mid-November and pay the $18 billion price tag with new spending cuts, but hopes of a bipartisan deal dissolved into bickering by day’s end.

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InlandPolitics: This and That!


Monday, January 6, 2013 – 08:30 a.m.

Here’s some news of interest flowing across the transom Monday morning.

The Deep Freeze

Most of the nation is adrift in snow and freezing cold weather Monday. The average U.S. temp is reportedly at 12.8˚F.

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Congress' year ahead

Congress returns to session this week, but analysts expect lawmakers to be primarily focused on talking points ahead of the November midterm election. (Brian Cassella / Chicago Tribune / December 31, 2012)

By Lisa Mascaro
January 5, 2014, 7:28 p.m.

WASHINGTON — Congress comes back to session this week with leaders of both parties planning a war of words in 2014 — dueling agendas that promise little substantive legislation but lots of messages aimed at establishing clear contrasts for voters heading toward the midterm election.

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CNN: Poll: GOP has edge in early midterm indicator


December 26th, 2013 – 09:00 AM ET
Posted by CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser

Washington (CNN) – Democrats have lost their advantage and Republicans now have a slight edge in the battle for control of Congress, according to a new national poll.

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McClatchyDC: Congress moving toward debate on unemployment benefits


By David Lightman
McClatchy Washington Bureau
December 23, 2013 Updated 18 hours ago

WASHINGTON — A three-month extension of emergency unemployment benefits is gaining momentum.

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