Failing to address climate change could drive women into prostitution, said 13 House Democrats who signed a resolution saying women are affected more negatively than men by the dramatic weather shifts.
A Guide to the 113th Congress
The latest updates and debate on the 113th Congress covering key issues such as immigration, defense, cybersecurity and taxes along with demographics, historical data and biographies of the newest members of the Senate and House of Representatives.
By Tom Howell Jr. - The Washington Times
House Republicans on Tuesday accused federal agencies of failing to prepare for the automatic sequester cuts, saying they had two years to get ready but instead the administration spent time on "scare tactics." Published March 19, 2013
After several years of complaining that Congress didn't have a budget, Republicans are now the ones holding up the 2014 budget process.
It's Tax Day, and lawmakers from both parties are pressing the Internal Revenue Service to come clean about its policy on reading taxpayers' email without a warrant.
Opponents of a bill to let private companies share cybersecurity information with the federal government vowed Thursday to continue their fight, saying the proposed law would lead to broader government monitoring of the Internet.
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn predict the Senate will pass a measure to strengthen background checks on gun sales, but National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre warned Sunday that Mr. Bloomberg cannot "buy America" on the issue.
For Republicans, the budget debate is all about "balance." For Democrats, it's about being "balanced." That letter "d" amounts to a $4 trillion difference between the two sides.
House Speaker John Boehner says he and President Obama have their differences, but in the end, their relationship is one of trust and friendship.
Republicans presented a united front on debt and taxes Sunday, ruling out tax increases as a way of reaching a "grand bargain" on the budget despite President Obama's recent efforts to pour on the charm.
More than six months since the deadly attacks on a U.S. diplomatic post and a nearby CIA facility in Benghazi, Libya, several Republican lawmakers say they still are looking for answers and are frustrated that the White House is blocking their access to an unknown number of American survivors.
Sen. John McCain is walking back from calling Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz "wacko birds" in an interview, saying he respects the senators and what they stand for.
Sen. Bob Corker, Tennessee Republican, said Sunday that his GOP colleagues would support a "grand bargain" — a long-term deal addressing the country's fiscal problems — that includes additional tax revenue if President Obama and the Democrats will back substantive reform in entitlement programs.
Sen. Harry Reid, who heads a Democratic-controlled Senate that hasn't passed a budget in more than three years, says bringing forth a tax-and-spend plan each year — as required — is too hard.
Senate Democrats on Wednesday defeated the latest Republican effort to repeal President Obama's health-care law, signaling that the 2012 elections did little to change the bitter political divisions over the 3-year-old policy.
Bill Gates will don his Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation co-chairman hat and head to Capitol Hill on Thursday, where he's expected to speak before the freshmen class of lawmakers.
Amid deep party-line divisions, the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved Congress' first post-Newtown gun control bill — a proposal to crack down on gun trafficking and straw purchases meant to circumvent the law — but the panel pushed the toughest work off until next week.
They spent the weekend blaming each other for the $85 billion in sequestration cuts that began taking effect Friday — but top Democrats and Republicans were careful Sunday to keep the door open to a breakthrough deal on the federal budget.
The House on Thursday passed and sent to President Obama a far-reaching extension of the Violence Against Women Act. The vote came after House Republican leaders, cognizant of divisions in their own ranks and the need to improve their faltering image among female voters, accepted a bill that cleared the Senate two weeks ago on a strong bipartisan vote.
Rep. Tom Latham, Iowa Republican, said he won't seek the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin.
Secretary of Defense nominee Chuck Hagel may not find a lot of love within the Republican Party, but Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan supports him.
The Supreme Court won't hear an appeal of a decision upholding a century-old ban on corporate campaign contributions in federal elections.
Though years in the brewing, the internal fight over the direction of the Republican Party has exploded onto front pages and political talk shows this month after strategist Karl Rove announced the formation of a new political action committee designed to promote more electable candidates.
The Obama administration amped up its offensive Sunday with Republicans over the $85 billion in across-the-board federal spending cuts scheduled to kick in Friday, releasing fresh warnings of a "real impact on people's lives" despite GOP claims the White House is exaggerating the potential ill effects.
Former President Jimmy Carter, who touts one of the lowest average approval ratings among all U.S. chief executives for his 1977-1981 term of office, said President Obama's biggest problem is Congress.
House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer says Congress must "put aside ideological constraints" and resolve differences over taxes, budget and spending.
House Speaker John A. Boehner's new "Senate first" strategy could put red state Democrats — especially those facing potentially tough re-election battles in 2014 — in a tough spot: Reject the White House's liberal second-term agenda and run afoul of party leaders, or back the president and alienate voters back home.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has taken the gun fight to Chicago and is poised to spend $2 million in an attempt to defeat former Rep. Debbie Halvorson in her bid for the U.S. House seat vacated by disgraced Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.
Congressional Republicans on Sunday accused the White House of poisoning the well on immigration reform by leaking a draft proposal while senators from both parties are working toward a compromise on the issue, saying the move shows President Obama is more concerned with scoring political points than passing legislation.
Democrats in the Senate are gearing up legislation that will offset proposed spending cuts to federal agencies and the Pentagon, with a focus on imposing taxes on million-dollar earners.
Outgoing Social Security Commissioner Michael J. Astrue has some parting shots for Congress, the White House and advocates for seniors. They have all "really walked away from Social Security," he says, leaving the program "fraying because of inattention to its problems."
It's the message of the ribbons: Dozens of congressional members wore green ribbons at Tuesday's State of the Union address to show solidarity with victims of gun violence.
President Obama's push to hike the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $9 per hour may sound good to minimum wage earners, but business owners and economic analysts aren't applauding. History shows that mandated minimum wage hikes often lead to massive job loss.
Senate Republicans shot down a Democrat-inspired plan to create a new court to oversee the use of drones for attacks, saying the idea intrudes on executive powers.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul issued a blunt response to the State of the Union Tuesday evening, calling out liberals on gun issues and renouncing President Obama's king-like way of governing.
Sen. Marco Rubio on Tuesday said President Obama's "obsession with raising taxes" and excessive spending is strangling the economy, and called for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution while delivering the Republican response to the State of the Union.
President Obama focused much of his State of the Union address on the economy, but he spent roughly a third of his speaking time Tuesday night on a laundry list of issues, including climate change, gun control, immigration and ease of voting.
Left out of President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night was any mention of shoring up Social Security or Medicaid — two of the three entitlement programs that will drive the growth of federal debt over the coming decades.
Automatic defense spending cuts set to begin Friday will hurt troops’ morale, readiness and their families and could damage the Pentagon’s ability to recruit an all-volunteer force, military chiefs told Congress on Tuesday.
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee argued Tuesday that a balance exists between enacting new gun laws and protecting the Second Amendment, while Republicans cautioned that any ban on so-called assault weapons treads dangerously on the U.S. Constitution — an ideological divide seared into the current gun debate that hard-liners on both sides are unlikely to cross.
Laying out an activist, big-spending second-term agenda, President Obama called on Congress in Tuesday night's State of the Union address to spend more on job-creation proposals for the middle class and claimed it would not add to the nation's huge budget deficits.
In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, President Obama will call on Congress to approve job-creation proposals to boost the fortunes of the middle class and "reignite the true engine of America's economic growth."
The Senate Armed Services Committee voted Tuesday along party lines to recommend the nomination of Chuck Hagel as the next secretary of defense, setting up a showdown in the full chamber as outspoken Republicans threatened to thwart the former Nebraska senator's nomination.
Treading on touchy territory, the Senate on Tuesday defeated a plan to push states to test accused rapists for sexually transmitted diseases, so their victims could then know what treatments to get.
Two-thirds of active duty Air Force combat units will drop below "acceptable readiness levels" by mid-May and be "completely non-mission capable" by July if automatic defense budget cuts occur on March 1, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III said Tuesday.
Still searching for the truth behind the Sept. 11 Benghazi terror attacks, Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday said he'll block two key Obama administration appointments until he gets answers.
As President Obama embarks on another four years in office, he is mindful that history is littered with the wreckage of presidents' second terms.
America's energy outlook this year will be, more than ever before, tied to how the federal government approaches the issue of climate change — and how much leverage the new Congress will have to help or hinder those efforts.
The bitter partisan fights on taxes and spending that dominated the past Congress — highlighted by the "fiscal cliff" battle — likely will continue to boil this year.
Having failed to pass cybersecurity legislation for the third consecutive year, Congress this year will take a back seat to the Obama administration in trying to secure critical networks such as transportation, banking and communications from Internet attacks.
The 113th Congress' most pressing defense-related concern will be the military's budget, despite the previous Congress having averted the so-called "fiscal cliff."
Who's worth watching in 2013? Here are 10 lawmakers of note as the curtain rises on a new season of political theater in Congress.
Despite the hopes of immigrant-rights advocates, it appears the election did not close the partisan divide on immigration.
The changing face of Congress can be seen in the changing faces of Congress.
President Obama will begin his second term with a much different leadership team than his first four years, with several of the key chairs in his Cabinet room yet to be filled.
Washington Times chief political correspondent Ralph Z. Hallow looks at 10 political issues and trends to watch in 2013.
After Republicans won control of the House in the 2010 elections, they triumphed in the first showdown with the White House on spending. Six months later, they and President Obama dueled to a draw on the debt. And Mr. Obama has emerged the victor in last week's tax fight. Now, all sides are gearing up for even bigger battles over entitlement spending and broad tax reform.
For House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the swearing-in of a record number of Democratic women was a historic moment worth a photograph. And, she decided, history needed a little digital help.
John A. Boehner thinks there’s too much of Barack Obama in Washington. Most of the Democrats think there’s a surplus of impertinent Republicans. Chris Christie says it’s Congress that turned Washington rancid. Everybody agrees something is rotten on the Potomac.
After two years marked with partisan gridlock, the Senate kicked off the new Congress on Thursday with 13 new members and welcomed back Sen. Mark Kirk, who made an emotional return to the Capitol after suffering a stroke almost a year ago.
The Bible and Torah, for years the standard religious texts used to swear in members of Congress, have been joined by the Constitution, the Koran — and, Thursday, for the first time ever, the Hindu Bhagavad-Gita.
Congress is ushering in the new and the old — dozens of eager freshmen determined to change Washington and the harsh reality of another stretch of bitterly divided government.
Recent Commentary Columns
President Obama's State of the Union speech Tuesday was carefully staged to promote his gun-grabbing second-term agenda. Arrangements were made so TV cameras would pan to the faces of victims of gun violence in the House galleries.
Despite outward statements of widespread support from his caucus after his re-election Thursday, Rep. John A. Boehner's speakership was hanging by a thread, within three votes of mandating a second ballot, largely because he allowed the "fiscal cliff" deal to go through the House.
"Et tu, GOP?" tweeted writer and comedian Stephen Kruiser upon watching the Republicans cave to President Obama's so-called "fiscal cliff" tax and spending hikes. "Kidding, I knew you had the knife."
My neighbor's 10-year-old station wagon has a terrible noise coming from the engine compartment that has been getting louder over time. Something is obviously very wrong.
Rep. John A. Boehner was re-elected speaker on Thursday, but his grasp of the oversized gavel is less firm. Nine Republicans abstained or voted to have someone lead the House, unlike two years ago, when the ranks were unified behind him.
Recent Blog Entries
Rep. Paul Ryan said Sunday that the proposed budget he's planning to roll out this week calls for repealing President Obama's health care overhaul and that Republicans did not lose the argument on Medicare in the 2012 election.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid led off Thursday's session with praise for Sen. Rand Paul's 13-hour filibuster the previous day, saying the junior senator from Kentucky used the rules the right way — and showed a strong spine, as well as other body parts.
The Obama Justice Department is still trying to figure out how to handle the legalization of marijuana possession in Colorado and Washington state, but one senator on Wednesday said that in an era of stretched budgets, the feds should back off.
The Senate Conservatives Fund announced Wednesday that it has made defeating Sen. Mark L. Pryor, Arkansas Democrat, its No. 1 priority in the 2014 election.
Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, said Sunday that a bipartisan group that has been crafting a plan regarding background checks for gun sales has made progress, but he appeared less bullish on the prospects of a ban on so-called assault weapons.
Sen. John McCain, one of the leading opponents of President Obama's nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel to be the new defense secretary, said Sunday that it's likely Mr. Hagel will be confirmed, but that he still doesn't believe he's qualified for the post.
Following up on his inaugural address, Mr. Obama devoted a lengthy passage of his speech to his intention to combat climate change, asking Congress to pursue a "bipartisan, market-based solution" and threatening executive action if it did not.
From The Vault
At least 32 lawmakers and congressional aides attended a four-day, lobbyist-paid technology conference in Las Vegas, despite ethics rules that normally limit such travel to one day.