Capitol Hillbillies

Congress wants a tighter grip on troubled VA hospitals

Congress wants a tighter grip on troubled VA hospitals

The chairmen of House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committees on Sunday decried long waits and backlogs at the nations VA hospitals but stopped short of calling for the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki. “You’ve got an entrenched bureaucracy that exists out there that is not held accountable, that is shooting for goals, goals […]

House ready to approve curbs on NSA spying

House ready to approve curbs on NSA spying

The House is poised to take the first significant step to change the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of American phone records, a compromise bill that is displeasing many civil liberties activists. The USA Freedom Act would codify a proposal made in January by President Barack Obama, who said he wanted to end the NSA’s […]

White House pissed over defense bill in Congress

White House pissed over defense bill in Congress

The White House is escalating an election-year dispute with Congress over military spending as lawmakers bucked the Pentagon and spared favorite ships and aircraft despite diminishing budgets. One day after a veto threat, Chief of Staff Denis McDonough met privately with House Democrats on Tuesday and criticized the $601 billion defense authorization bill for parochial […]

Republican House member pushes immigration vote

Republican House member pushes immigration vote

Defying House Republican leaders, a GOP congressman on moved toward forcing an election-year decision on his immigration legislation. Rep. Jeff Denham of California filed his bill, known as the ENLIST Act, as an amendment to the sweeping defense policy measure that the House will consider this week. The measure would create a path to citizenship […]

California Republicans cite immigration reform support

California Republicans cite immigration reform support

Republican Rep. David Valadao says he’s not worried that Congress’ failure to pass immigration legislation will hurt his prospects for re-election to a district in California’s agricultural heartland. Same goes for GOP Rep. Jeff Denham, who represents a neighboring district in the state’s San Joaquin Valley. Still, the California congressmen are making sure voters know […]

Another setback for immigration reform efforts

Another setback for immigration reform efforts

House Republican leaders intervened Friday to prevent a vote on immigration legislation, dealing a severe blow to election-year efforts to overhaul the dysfunctional system. The move came after a Republican congressman from California announced plans to try to force a vote next week, over strong conservative opposition, on his measure creating a path to citizenship […]

Harry Reid opposes Obama nominee for federal judge

Harry Reid opposes Obama nominee for federal judge

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, one of the Obama administration’s staunchest allies in Congress, announced his opposition Thursday to Michael Boggs’ nomination to the federal bench, dealing a strong if not fatal blow to the former Georgia state lawmaker’s confirmation hopes. “Somebody should have looked a little more deeply into his record,” Reid said of […]

Congress unhappy with slow response to VA problems

Congress unhappy with slow response to VA problems

Patience is wearing thin in Congress as lawmakers confront allegations of treatment delays and falsified patient-appointment reports at health centers run by the Veterans Affairs Department. A former clinic director says dozens of veterans died while awaiting treatment at the Phoenix VA hospital. Reports of problems at VA medical facilities date back at least 14 […]

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