Political Gaze

McConnell declares: Keystone tops Senate agenda in January

Written by The AP Wednesday, 17 December 2014 10:27

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell declared this week that approving the Keystone XL pipeline will top the Senate agenda in January, potentially setting up an early veto confrontation with President Barack Obama.

Congressional Republicans have been pushing for approval of the pipeline for years. Obama has resisted because of environmental concerns.

Activists bait N.J. Gov. Chris Christie with doughnuts over his refusal to halt cruel bear hunt

Written by The Associated Press Sunday, 07 December 2014 17:25

BEAR HUNT: N.J. Gov. Chris Christie has been assailed in recent weeks for failing to halt brutality against pigs and bears.

Perhaps hoping to bait Gov. Chris Christie, animal rights advocates with doughnuts in tow rallied in Trenton on Dec. 4 to bash the governor for allowing the state’s fifth consecutive annual black bear hunt, which is scheduled to run from Dec. 8 to 13.

MapLight tracks lawmakers' fiscal relationships

Written by The Wisconsin Gazette Tuesday, 25 November 2014 14:39

MapLight has launched a personal financial disclosures database, a tool that brings to light the fiscal relationships shared between legislators and private companies.

Each year, members of Congress file personal financial disclosures regarding their various assets and sources of income.

America elects ‘the greatest Congress the Kochs ever bought’

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 13 November 2014 15:36

Mitch McConnell of Kentucky waits to cast his ballot.
— PHOTO: AP/J. Scott Applewhite

The moon was nearly full and a red tide washed across the United States on Nov. 4. Did you hear the wolves howling?

Bachmann ready to leave Congress, but not politics

Written by HENRY C. JACKSON,
Associated Press writer
Monday, 08 December 2014 17:22

An audacious right-wing Republican, U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann stood out from the moment she was first elected to Congress in 2006. Democrats were ascendant and Bachmann was a stridently Republican new arrival with a homespun Minnesota twang.

Four terms later, Bachmann is leaving just as Republicans take control of Congress for the first time since she was first elected. After a turbulent career dotted by fights with the left and her own party, and a fast-rising and fast-fading presidential campaign, Bachmann said she is ready to leave, her work in Congress complete.

Republicans starting to strut their stuff for 2016

Written by The AP Monday, 01 December 2014 14:22

A half-dozen potential Republican presidential contenders spent the last of November peacocking across the sprawling grounds of Florida luxury resort, schmoozing with donors and sizing up the competition in the party’s most fractured field in decades.

The summit felt like a test run for what is increasingly shaping up to be a brutal showdown for the Republican presidential nomination among more than a dozen potential contenders, including a cluster of governors.

Tennessee governor to lead GOP Governors Association

Written by The Associated Press Friday, 21 November 2014 07:45

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has been elected as the next chairman of the Republican Governors Association.

The second term governor will take the reins from New Jersey's Chris Christie, who has been on a victory lap at the group's annual meeting in Florida this week after Republicans did especially well in the midterm elections.

Election 2014 What to look for as you watch the results

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 30 October 2014 11:56

Check in with WiG on election night for a progressive look at the results.

The puzzle comes together late Nov. 4 and on Nov. 5.

Landrieu can't close gap, loses Senate seat in Louisiana

Written by The Associated Press Monday, 08 December 2014 07:50

Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu's 12-point loss in a weekend runoff ended up closer than several polls suggested it could be. But an Associated Press analysis of the returns show that a slide in turnout simply wasn't enough for Landrieu to recover the ground she'd lost since her last victory six years ago.

The vote on Dec. 6 resulted in a comfortable win for Rep. Bill Cassidy, a Baton Rouge Republican who will give the GOP a 54-seat majority when the Senate convenes in January.

Lame-duck drama
Showdowns over immigration, Keystone XL pipeline

Written by By Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Wednesday, 26 November 2014 12:53

President Barack Obama looks over notes at the White House. — PHOTO: Pete Souza

President Barack Obama came back after a massive Election Day defeat to take big leaps on climate change and decisive executive action to protect millions of immigrants from deportation.

House GOP: Give up gavel if seeking new office

Written by ANDREW TAYLOR,
Associated Press writer
Monday, 17 November 2014 08:51

House Republicans have adopted a new party rule that blocks powerful House committee chairmen from seeking other office if they want to want to hold onto their post.

The rules change means chairmen would not be distracted from their legislative duties or party responsibilities while running for the Senate, governor or president. It originated from frustration that several recent heads of a powerful Appropriations subcommittee responsible for health and education were shirking their responsibilities while running for the Senate.

Hillary Clinton: Midterm elections should motivate women

Written by The Associated Press Wednesday, 22 October 2014 08:04

Hillary Rodham Clinton urged Democratic voters not to be complacent about the November midterm elections, saying earlier this week that working women and their families will lose out on a better future if Republicans gain control of both houses of Congress.

The former secretary of state made the remarks during a sold-out women's luncheon in San Francisco that raised $1.4 million for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.