south carolina

Capitol Ink | Washington Paper Towel Monument

Republicans Face Critical Moment With Kavanaugh
Allegation against Supreme Court nominee heaps cultural importance on what senators do

Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh meets with Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, a member of the Judiciary Committee, in July. Graham said on Sunday that he is willing to hear Kavanaugh’s accuser, but said that should happen “immediately.” (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS: President Donald Trump’s pick for a pivotal spot on the Supreme Court already put the Senate at the confluence of the nation’s contentious political and legal movements.  But a woman’s allegation of sexual assault by Brett Kavanaugh  — dating back decades to when he was a teenager — heaps cultural importance as well on what senators do at this moment.

Senators, particularly Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Republicans who have relentlessly insisted on a confirmation vote this month, now have to decide what to do amid a “Me Too” movement that has exposed how these types of allegations have been hidden, mishandled or simply ignored by powerful men in the past. 

Senators Seek Allegation Details Before Kavanaugh Vote
Arizona Republican Jeff Flake joins Democrats’ calls to delay committee vote

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is among Democratic lawmakers who want to delay the confirmation process for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 11:51 p.m. | Republican Sen. Jeff Flakejoined calls from Democrats on Sunday to hit pause on Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination to get more information from a woman who went public with details of an alleged sexual attack by Kavanaugh decades ago when they were both in high school.

The comments by the Arizona lawmaker, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, are the first sign of trouble for Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s push for a confirmation vote on Kavanaugh this month.

Senators Help Raise Money for Harris Staffer’s Cancer Battle
Former colleague from Clinton campaign running Chicago marathon to fundraise

Tyrone Gayle, right, talks with Hillary Clinton at her campaign HQ in New York. (Barb Kinney/Clinton campaign file photo)

One former Hillary Clinton campaign press aide is running the Chicago Marathon money to help another’s battle against cancer.

And the effort is getting a little help from some prominent senators.

Democrats Fume Over Transfer of FEMA Money to ICE Before Hurricanes
Agency officials, some Republicans say funds could not be used for response

Sen. Jeff Merkley has released documents showing that nearly $10 million from FEMA’s budget was diverted to fund ICE’s detention facilities and deportation operations. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

On the eve of Hurricane Florence hitting the U.S. coast, Democratic lawmakers expressed outrage that the Homeland Security Department transferred nearly $10 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to Immigration and Customs Enforcement in a reprogramming move this summer.

Sen. Jeff Merkley’s office on Wednesday released documents confirming that $9.8 million from FEMA’s operations and support budget was diverted to fund ICE’s detention facilities and deportation operations.

Midterms Show We’re Not Any Closer to a Post-Racial America
Racially charged language is a trademark rather than a flaw to many

Florida gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis, a staunch ally of President Donald Trump, warned state voters not to “monkey this up” by electing his Democratic opponent, who is African-American. Above, DeSantis and Trump appear at a rally in Tampa, Fla., in July. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images file photo)

OPINION — Remember the time when Trent Lott got in a heap of trouble for remembering the time?

It was 2002, and the Senate Republican leader representing Mississippi was waxing nostalgic for what he considered the good old days at a 100th birthday celebration for South Carolina Sen. Strom Thurmond. Carried away by the moment — and in remarks that recalled similar words from 1980 — Lott said: “When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.”

Where Congress Will Hunker Down for Hurricane Florence
Rep. Walter Jones remembers another storm that walloped the North Carolina coast

Rep. Walter Jones, R-N.C., speaks with reporters in Statuary Hall in May 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As lawmakers scramble to ensure federal and local organizations are prepared to handle the fallout from Hurricane Florence later this week, they’ve also begun crafting their own personal plans for the Category 3 storm.

This isn’t Rep. Walter Jones’ first test against a hurricane. The longtime North Carolina Republican’s vault of storm memories dates back some 66 years, to 1954 in his hometown of Farmville, North Carolina, just outside Greenville.

Trump Again Defends Puerto Rico Response as Hurricane Florence Nears
President blames ‘totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan’ for problems after Maria

Hurricane Florence rainfall predictions as the storm heads for the Carolinas and Virginia, according to the National Hurricane Center. (NOAA)

President Donald Trump on Wednesday warned Hurricane Florence could prove “bigger than anticipated” as it barrels toward the Carolinas and sharply blamed a Puerto Rican mayor for the widely panned federal response to a storm there last year.

FEMA Administrator Brock Long on Tuesday warned Florence has “an opportunity of being a very devastating storm,” adding “the power is going to be off for weeks.” He predicts the storm will be a Category 3 or Category 4 hurricane when it makes landfall this weekend. And Trump told reporters after being briefed by Long and Homeland Security officials that Florence will be “tremendously big and tremendously wet” with “tremendous amounts of water.”

Trump Says Government ‘Totally Prepared’ for ‘Tremendously Wet’ Hurricane Florence
President pins some blame for Puerto Rico recovery on ineffective power companies

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump said his administration is “sparing no expense” to prepare for Hurricane Florence, which he described as “tremendously big and tremendously wet,” and containing “tremendous amounts of water.”

“We are totally prepared,” he said Tuesday. “We are ready as anybody has ever been.” 

The Price of Voting Against the Iraq War
Retiring Tennessee Republican looks back on another time he thought his career was over

John J. “Jimmy” Duncan Jr., R-Tenn., during the Transportation Committee markup of legislation which would create a new Department of Homeland Security. The Committee approved amendments to keep the Coast Guard and Federal Emergency Management Agency separate from the proposed new department. (Scott Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The five decade-long tradition of Duncan family dominance in Tennessee’s 2nd District will end with the 115th Congress. With an ethics probe clouding his legacy and retirement closing in, Rep. John J. Duncan Jr. looked back to another time he thought his career might be ending.

In 2002, as fear and speculation swirled, Duncan sided with just a handful of other House Republicans, including Amo Houghton of New York, in voting against the Iraq War. He knew it could be political suicide.