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Capitol Briefing: February 24, 2008 - March 1, 2008

George Miller's (Un)official Web Site

It's no secret that Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.) is backing Barack Obama's campaign for president. The veteran chairman of the Education and Workforce Committee and a top lieutenant of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Miller endorsed the Illinois Democrat last month and worked (unsuccessfully) to try to help him win California...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 29, 2008; 3:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  2008 Campaign , Ethics and Rules , House  
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Player of the Week: Mitch McConnell

Outside of the Capitol and Kentucky, Mitch McConnell isn't exactly a household name. Though he is the Senate's top Republican, he has no interest in running for president, doesn't pop up much on the Sunday talk shows and generally keeps his voice -- and his profile -- down. Master of...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 29, 2008; 1:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Player of the Week  
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Ethics Panel Launches Renzi Probe

The House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct voted today to form an investigative subcommittee to probe whether indicted Rep. Rick Renzi (R-Ariz.) has violated the chamber's Code of Official Conduct. Renzi was charged last week by a federal grand jury with 35 counts of money laundering, extortion and other...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 28, 2008; 4:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules  
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Democrats Keep Pushing on Ethics

When House Minority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) announced he was pulling the Democrats' ethics bill from consideration Wednesday after complaints erupted about it from both parties, he suggested that the next step would be for the two parties to get together to discuss the proposal and how to proceed. Republicans...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 28, 2008; 2:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Dem. Leaders , Ethics and Rules  
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Democrats Pull Ethics Bill

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) just announced on the House floor that Democrats were canceling plans to vote tomorrow on a proposal to create a new Office of Congressional Ethics. Here's Capitol Briefing's original post on the subject. After a full day of private meetings on both sides of...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 27, 2008; 4:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
Categories:  House  
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Parties Plot on Ethics Reform

Meetings on ethics reform are breaking out all over the Capitol this afternoon, as House Democrats try to convince their members to vote for the creation of a new office to screen complaints and Republicans prepare to unveil a counterproposal that would radically change House rules and the entire ethics...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 27, 2008; 3:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules , House  
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Iraq: This Is No Longer a Test

The Senate is currently debating a measure to cut off funds for the Iraq war, after the chamber voted Tuesday by a wide margin to proceed with debate on a troop withdrawal bill sponsored by Sen. Russell Feingold (D-Wis.). On Monday, Capitol Briefing incorrectly predicted that Feingold's bill would not...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 27, 2008; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Iraq , Senate  
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Romney for Congress?

Don't count the Romney family out of November's elections just yet. Mitt Romney's (R) presidential campaign may have fizzled out earlier this month, but now one of his five sons, 32-year-old Josh Romney, is mulling whether to challenge Utah Rep. Jim Matheson (D) this fall, according to a report in...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 26, 2008; 2:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  2008 Campaign  
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Renzi Move a Mixed Blessing for GOP

Indicted Rep. Rick Renzi (R-Ariz.) yesterday announced his decision about his future in the House: He's staying -- for now, anyway. And while Republican leaders may not be outwardly pleased with that choice, it could actually help them as much as it hurts. Renzi was charged last week by a...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 26, 2008; 8:29 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (25)
Categories:  2008 Campaign , Ethics and Rules , GOP Leaders , House  
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Renzi Vows to Stay in House

Arizona Rep. Rick Renzi (R) said late Monday that he would not resign from the House, despite being indicted last week by a federal grand jury in Tucson on 35 counts of money laundering, wire fraud, extortion and other charges related to a land-swap scheme and his alleged embezzlement of...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 25, 2008; 7:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (22)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules , House  
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Iraq: This Is Only a Test

If you tune in to C-SPAN2 on Tuesday, you might think you've stumbled upon an important turning point in the nation's Iraq war policy. But as the emergency broadcast system likes to say, this is only a test. The Senate is expected to vote Tuesday on two Iraq-related measures sponsored...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 25, 2008; 4:17 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Iraq , Senate  
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House Members Regain Flexibility to Fly Home

House members are once again cleared for takeoff, as the chamber's ethics committee quietly announced last week that lawmakers could make reservations on multiple flights to and from their districts without violating ethics rules. The life of a member of Congress isn't always easy. Most lawmakers fly home to their...

By Ben Pershing  |  February 25, 2008; 11:08 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Ethics and Rules  
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