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Seth McLaughlin

Seth McLaughlin, a reporter on the Politics Desk, can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @SethMcLaughlin1

Articles by Seth McLaughlin

Rep. Peter T. King

GOP leaders back hearings on Muslims

Saying extremist elements of Islam are a real threat that need to be confronted, House Republican leaders on Tuesday defended the Homeland Security Committee chairman's decision to begin hearings this week to investigate the inroads radical Muslims have made in America. Published March 8, 2011

** FILE ** California Rep. Kevin McCarthy. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

House Republican whip sees new funding impasse

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, the third-ranking House Republican, said Tuesday that Congress will have to pass another short-term spending bill in the coming weeks because of Senate Democrats' failure to act. Published March 8, 2011

Rep. Lamar Smith, Texas Republican, said Tuesday that a Pew Hispanic Center report showed more than 7 million people are working in the country illegally and noted that the unemployment rates in minority communities are well above the national average. (Associated Press)

Jobless rates of minorities linked to illegals

Calling for stricter enforcement of existing laws, House Republicans said Tuesday the nation's broken immigration system is making it more difficult for minorities to land jobs because they are competing with illegals willing to work longer hours for less pay. Published March 1, 2011

Former Sen. Judd Gregg said, "the House is much closer to the intensity of feeling in the American public on ... spending and deficit and debt than the Senate is." (Associated Press)

Hill leaders are contrast in spending styles

With the federal government sinking deeper into red ink and a government shutdown looming, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has proposed pushing back the deadline for spending cuts and instead have the Senate take up an unrelated bill to revamp U.S. patent law — a measure that has nothing to do with the raging fiscal battle. Published February 24, 2011

Stimulus funds aim to help kick cigarettes

New York City is pouring hundreds of thousands of federal dollars into television ads telling people they're better off knocking back a glass of seltzer water or fat-free milk than chugging a soda — part of hundreds of millions of dollars from President Obama's economic stimulus package devoted to getting Americans to change their behavior by eating more veggies, kicking cigarettes and picking up dumbbells. Published February 17, 2011

GOP takes aim at stimulus cash

Heading into the second anniversary of President Obama's stimulus bill, House Republicans are taking their first real swing at its spending, with proposals that they say would ultimately strip tens of billions of dollars from the $814 billion package. Published February 15, 2011

Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, warns that when "you try to make cuts this deep to a slice of the budget this narrow, it is almost impossible to do responsibly."

Hill brawl awaits Obama's 2012 budget

When President Obama rolls out his 2012 budget Monday, it will sound the starting gun on a three-month sprint that will determine just how serious Washington is about translating its cost-cutting rhetoric into serious action to reduce staggering deficits. Published February 13, 2011

Rep. Steny H. Hoyer

GOP finds politics of Patriot Act tricky

House Republicans lost their first vote of the year this week on a measure to extend the USA Patriot Act after failing to count noses within their own caucus and shedding the support of dozens of Democrats who voted against the very same provisions they approved a year ago when they were in charge. Published February 10, 2011

Va.'s Webb won't seek second Senate term

Virginia Sen. Jim Webb said Wednesday that he will not seek re-election, increasing the chances that Republicans will be able to take the seat back from Democrats in the 2012 election. Published February 9, 2011

Deficit diggers now vow to fill hole

While Democrats and Republicans say they are ready to begin filling in the nation's deep borrowing hole, budget hawks remain skeptical of lawmakers' ability to fulfill their vow, given that many of them did the digging in the first place. Published February 8, 2011

Republicans find places to cut $43 billion

The Republicans who control of the purse strings in the House announced plans Thursday to cut basic domestic spending by at least $43 billion this year through reductions to most federal departments — though they still fell short of the GOP's pledge just months ago to return to pre-stimulus levels. Published February 3, 2011

Rep. Paul Ryan, Wisconsin Republican, is chairman of the House Budget Committee.

House GOP leader sets budget-cut goal short of party's pledge

The chairman of the House Budget Committee on Thursday said the House will cut at least $44 billion from last year's non-security discretionary spending — an amount that falls short of the GOP's pledge just months ago to return to pre-stimulus levels. Published February 3, 2011

Congress to rewrite rules on emissions

Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill announced separate plans this week to try to block the Obama administration from unilaterally imposing limits on greenhouse gas emissions, ratcheting up pressure on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to hold a vote. Published February 2, 2011

U.S.-Canada border called 'grossly underprotected'

The top two senators on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee said Tuesday the federal government has control of only 32 miles of the 4,000-mile-border with Canada, providing terrorists with what could be an easier entry point than the southern border. Published February 1, 2011

Sen. Mark Warner (left), Virginia Democrat, and Sen. Saxby Chambliss, Georgia Republican, are working on a bill that incorporates controversial recommendations from the president's fiscal commission. Mr. Warner said Monday that Congress must cut federal spending, "including entitlement programs," enact comprehensive tax reform and "grow the economy by adopting an innovation and growth agenda." He added, "It will require all three of those elements because no single one of them alone will get the job done." (Associated Press)

Lawmakers wary of touching entitlements

Plans targeting federal spending are coming fast and furious on Capitol Hill, but lawmakers are treading lightly around the big three of entitlement programs — Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Published January 31, 2011


Sen. Paul says tea party holds power on Hill

To those who predicted that the tea party movement would get swallowed up by Washington, Sen. Rand Paul says the cynics have got it completely backward — it's the tea party that has co-opted Capitol Hill. Published January 27, 2011

GOP hearings put health law, oil spill under scrutiny

House Republicans drove home the new political reality on Capitol Hill on Wednesday by convening a series of hearings aimed at scrutinizing President Obama's first two years in office and sending a message against what they see as his expansive government agenda. Published January 26, 2011

Lawmaker wants to set terms on U.N.

Arguing that the United States can no longer blindly turn over billions of dollars to the United Nations, members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee said the new Congress should withhold contributions to the global body until it adopts serious reforms. Published January 25, 2011

Tea party wary of spending cut vows

Leaders of a nationwide tea party group say they are heartened by early steps the new Republican majority has taken in the House, but they remain concerned that GOP leaders could walk away from campaign promises when it comes to cutting spending and reducing the national debt. Published January 24, 2011

House GOP works on health 'solutions'

Wasting no time, House Republicans moved quickly ahead Thursday with their own overhaul of the nation's health care system, commanding key committees to get to work and launching a fresh attack on federal policies regarding abortion funding. Published January 20, 2011