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On Capitol Hill, EPA chief Scott Pruitt takes little responsibility for his troubles

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt offered lawmakers little contrition Thursday for questionable spending and management decisions that have plunged his agency into scandal, as he accused critics of fabricating stories about him in an effort to undermine President Donald Trump's agenda.

Pruitt spent a tense day on ...Read more

Trump says Michael Cohen 'represented me' in Stormy Daniels deal

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The legal thicket around a hush-money payment to a porn star was tangled further Thursday after President Donald Trump appeared to confirm that Michael Cohen was representing him when the lawyer paid $130,000 to Stormy Daniels on the eve of the 2016 election.

Trump, who previously said he was unaware of Cohen's payment, vigorously...Read more

Trump says he doesn't watch TV — except when he does

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump just can't quit TV.

During a half-hour telephone interview on "Fox & Friends" Thursday morning, Trump offered a new spin on his frequent media criticism, assailing "fake news" yet insisting he has found the path to sanity by avoiding that which he has long seemed to adore.

"I don't watch them at all," Trump...Read more

Trump to make long-delayed visit to Britain in July

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump's long-delayed visit to the United Kingdom has been scheduled for July 13, 18 months into his presidency that has been notable for its occasional tensions with America's closest ally.

The two governments Thursday announced the trip for Trump to hold talks with Prime Minister Theresa May.

"Further details ...Read more

Lashing out at opponents, Trump bashes the FBI and threatens to intrude on the Russia investigation

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- In a rambling, grievance-filled interview, President Donald Trump on Thursday threatened to intervene in the Justice Department's Russia investigation, again derided former FBI Director James B. Comey as "a leaker and ... a liar," and defended allies now under investigation.

Trump also used the wide-ranging half-hour phone ...Read more

In angry Fox News interview, Trump makes surprising admissions about Michael Cohen and Moscow

Politics / Political News /

In a meandering interview on "Fox & Friends" Thursday morning that turned at times into an angry phone rant, President Donald Trump admitted that Michael Cohen represented him in the Stormy Daniels case and confirmed he did stay overnight in Moscow hotel, contradicting a claim he made to then FBI Director James Comey.

Cohen, Trump's longtime ...Read more

Sessions won't say if he's talked with Trump about Michael Cohen

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Attorney General Jeff Sessions refused to tell Congress on Wednesday if he had stepped aside from supervising the federal investigation into President Donald Trump's personal lawyer in New York, or say if he has discussed the sensitive probe with the president or his aides.

Sessions, testifying before a Senate Appropriations ...Read more

Sessions won't say if he's recused from probe of Trump's lawyer

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Attorney General Jeff Sessions refused Wednesday to say whether he's recused himself from involvement in the Justice Department's investigation into President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.

"I should not answer that question; it would be inappropriate to do so," Sessions said at a Senate Appropriations subcommittee...Read more

Texas governor wants former Rep. Blake Farenthold to pay for special election

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is asking former Rep. Blake Farenthold to pay for the June 30 special election to fill the seat the congressman vacated when he resigned earlier this month.

Abbott wrote a letter to Farenthold on Wednesday to "demand" that he "cover all costs" for the June 30 special election in Texas' 27th District.

...Read more

Trump gamble for quick trade deal with China seen as a long shot

Politics / Political News /

BEIJING -- President Donald Trump is dispatching two of his top economic deputies to China in hopes of a quick deal on trade. They may find the reality on the ground more daunting.

Trump said on Tuesday that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will depart for China within days. Mnuchin is expected to be accompanied by U.S. Trade Representative ...Read more

GOP baseball returns to scene of last year's shooting

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Republican congressional baseball coach Roger Williams was hitting infield practice Wednesday morning as Rodney Davis played catcher and Williams staffer Zack Barth backed them up around a flooded batters box.

In the outfield, lobbyist and former Hill aide Matt Mika was fielding balls with teammates.

It seemed like a normal ...Read more

Trump's travel ban goes before Supreme Court in test of presidential power

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- More than a year after President Donald Trump issued a travel ban that set off the first legal controversy of his presidency, the Supreme Court is set to consider whether the chief executive has the power to bar most immigrants and travelers from five heavily Muslim countries.

The justices will hear arguments Wednesday from ...Read more

'Year of the woman'? Not so much in California

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The numbers are eye-popping. On Monday, EMILY's List, a political organization dedicated to electing Democratic women to office, announced that over 36,000 women had contacted them about running for office since Donald Trump was elected president in Nov. 2016. By comparison, just over 900 women reached out to the group over the ...Read more

Why the Hill's Quitters Caucus keeps growing

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON--There are really just three ways to give up a seat in Congress on your own timetable: retire, resign or quit. And the method with the least attractive connotations has become particularly popular in the last decade, especially among Republicans.

Those who use the term "retirement" properly are lawmakers who decline to run for re-...Read more

Republican Debbie Lesko wins Arizona special election

Politics / Political News /

Former Republican state Sen. Debbie Lesko won the special election in Arizona's 8th District on Tuesday night, but by a relatively slim margin in a district that President Donald Trump easily carried in 2016.

With most of the votes counted, Lesko had 53 percent of the vote to 47 percent for Democrat Hiral Tipirneni, according to the Arizona ...Read more

Rep. Duncan Hunter sets up legal fund amid criminal investigation

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., has filed paperwork to establish a legal expense fund amid an ongoing federal criminal investigation into whether he misused campaign cash.

Hunter filed the required paperwork March 27, seeking a rarely granted "Legal Expense Fund" through which members of Congress under investigation or being sued in...Read more

Trump says there's a 'great shot' at a new Iran deal, as Macron suggests. Or maybe not

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump suggested on Tuesday that he would consider a plea from visiting French President Emmanuel Macron to renegotiate and expand the multinational Iran nuclear deal rather than tear it up, as Trump has long pledged to do.

Macron, who came to Washington intent on salvaging the 2015 accord that dismantled Iran's ...Read more

Trump is pushing hard to reach NAFTA agreement, both with trading partners and with Congress

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- With critical political deadlines fast approaching, the Trump administration is racing to strike a deal on a revamped North American Free Trade Agreement by early May -- with an eye toward forcing a congressional vote on a new pact by the end of the year.

After months of making little progress, recent statements from high-level ...Read more

Sessions declines to recuse himself from probe into Trump lawyer

Politics / Political News /

WASHINTON-- Attorney General Jeff Sessions has decided against recusing himself from the investigation into President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, but will consider stepping back from specific questions tied to the probe, according to a person familiar with the matter.

By contrast, Sessions recused himself from the ...Read more

Election year history belies ambitious talk on appropriations

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- November might seem far away, but the midterm elections' impact on spending bills is already on display, amplified by internal Republican jockeying for leadership positions in the House.

Election years tend to chill swift movement on appropriations bills -- especially when there's potential turnover in leadership of one or both ...Read more