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Capitol Briefing: January 13, 2008 - January 19, 2008

Reid (Briefly) Off-Key on Stimulus

For the past week, cynical Congressional reporters and observers have been treated to the highly unusual sight of Democratic leaders, GOP leaders and President Bush singing a rousing chorus of Kumbaya on the forthcoming economic stimulus package. Heartwarming as all the bipartisan photo-ops and talk of unity have been, one...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 18, 2008; 5:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Agenda , Branch vs. Branch , Dem. Leaders  
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Rep. Jefferson: 'Victim'

It turns out we've got embattled Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) all wrong. He is not the mastermind of an alleged bribery scheme. He's a victim. On Thursday, Jefferson testified in U. S. District Court in Alexandria that he felt bullied by FBI agents who came to search his home back...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 18, 2008; 12:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules  
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Following the 'Maestro'

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has not achieved the rock star status of his predecessor, Alan Greenspan, but members of Congress do appreciate one thing about Bernanke -- they can actually understand what he's saying. Bernanke was on the Hill this morning to testify before the House Budget Committee, and...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 17, 2008; 4:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Hearing Watch  
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Impeachment Update!

Here's a quick update on the chances that the House will impeach President Bush or Vice President Cheney during their last year in office: It's not happening. At the end of her weekly press briefing this morning, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was asked why she had not supported the burgeoning...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 17, 2008; 11:53 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (60)
Categories:  Branch vs. Branch  
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The Year Ahead: Can Democrats Govern?

At noon on Tuesday, Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.), serving as the Speaker Pro Tempore, called the House to order. The chamber's chaplain, Rev. Daniel Coughlin, offered a brief prayer. "As this 110th Congress resumes in this Second Session for debate and passage of new bills, we pray to You, the...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 17, 2008; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (90)
Categories:  Agenda , Dem. Leaders  
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After Siljander's Indictment, Is His Old District Jinxed?

Maybe there's something cursed about the House seat in Michigan's Sixth congressional district. How else to explain the fact that the previous two Republicans to hold that southwestern Michigan seat are both facing felony charges? It was a shocker when David A. Stockman, the one-time congressman from the Sixth (...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 16, 2008; 6:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules  
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MLB Spreads the Wealth on the Hill

On the same day Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig was being grilled about steroids by a House panel, his office was busy filing the year-end report for baseball's political action committee. Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig listens to Former Sen. George Mitchell testify before the House Oversight and...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 15, 2008; 3:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Fundraising Circuit , Hearing Watch  
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Clyburn Says Focus on Race Issues 'A Shame'

South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn (D) got back yesterday from an official trip to Asia, and he was not happy with what greeted him on his arrival -- a Democratic presidential contest that has become nastily focused on race issues. Rep. Clyburn is a member of the House Democrats' leadership...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 15, 2008; 2:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  2008 Campaign  
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Rep. Baker Leaving House for K Street Post

Louisiana Rep. Richard Baker (R) is leaving the House to become president and CEO of the Managed Funds Association, adding to the list of prominent lawmakers decamping to K Street. Here's the release from MFA. Baker has represented the Baton Rouge-based 6th district in central Louisiana since 1986. He is...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 15, 2008; 12:10 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (243)
Categories:  House  
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Is That a Veto in Your Pocket?

Congress and the Bush administration are playing a game of constitutional footsie with a bill that sets funding levels for the Pentagon and includes a pay increase for members of the military. Over the next two weeks lawmakers will return to Washington for the second session of the 110th Congress...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 14, 2008; 4:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Branch vs. Branch  
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And the Mouse Goes to...

If you've ever had to peruse an official congressional Web site for business or pleasure, you know they're a mixed bag. Some are cutting-edge, incorporating blogs, video, podcasts and all the bells and whistles savvy surfers have come to expect. Others are basically a jumble of text and links that...

By Ben Pershing  |  January 14, 2008; 9:17 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  House , Senate  
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