Articles written by Kevin Freking

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Senate confirms 200th federal judge under Biden as Democrats surpass Trump's pace

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate on Wednesday confirmed the 200th federal judge of President Joe Biden's tenure, about a month earlier than when Donald Trump hit that mark in his term, though Trump still holds the edge when it comes to the most i...

 

America's debt tops $34 trillion, but a commission to address it appears dead in Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — For Mike Johnson it was effectively a Day 1 priority. It's well past time, the newly elected House speaker said in October, to establish a bipartisan commission to tackle the federal government's growing $34.6 trillion in debt. "...

 

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene triggers effort to remove House Speaker Mike Johnson from office

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hardline Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene called Wednesday for a vote to oust Speaker Mike Johnson, pressing ahead with her long-shot effort despite pushback from Republicans at the highest levels tired of the political chaos. Greene, w...

 

Democrats say they will save Speaker Mike Johnson's job if Republicans try to oust him

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats will vote to save Republican Speaker Mike Johnson's job should some of his fellow Republican lawmakers seek to remove him from the position, Democratic leaders said Tuesday, likely assuring for now that Johnson will...

 

Senate passes $1.2 trillion funding package in early morning vote, ending threat of partial shutdown

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate passed a $1.2 trillion package of spending bills in the early morning hours Saturday, a long overdue action nearly six months into the budget year that will push any threats of a government shutdown to the fall. The bill...

 

Biden and party leaders implore Speaker Johnson to help Ukraine in 'intense' Oval Office meeting

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional leaders emerged from an "intense" Oval Office meeting with President Joe Biden on Tuesday speaking optimistically about the prospects for avoiding a partial government shutdown, but with new uncertainty about aid for U...

 

A chaotic US House is losing three Republican committee chairs to retirement in the span of a week

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a single week, the Republican chairs of three House committees announced they would not be seeking reelection, raising questions about whether the chaos that has reigned this Congress is driving out some of the GOP's top t...

 

The GOP's slim House majority is getting even tighter with Kevin McCarthy's retirement

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Mike Johnson's margin for error in getting Republican priorities through the House is getting slimmer, complicating future votes and magnifying the ability of individual lawmakers to force concessions. Republicans h...

 

Senate approves hundreds of military promotions after Republican senator ends blockade of nominees

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate in a single stroke Tuesday approved about 425 military promotions after Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama ended a monthslong blockade of nominations over his opposition to a Pentagon abortion policy. Tuberville had been u...

 

After one week without a House speaker, Republicans appear no closer to choosing a new leader

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Republican majority is stuck, one week after the ouster of Speaker Kevin McCarthy, with lawmakers unable to coalesce around a new leader in a stalemate that threatens to keep Congress partly shuttered indefinitely. On T...

 

Ukraine aid left out of government funding package, raising questions about future US support

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional supporters of Ukraine say they won't give up after a bill to keep the federal government open excluded President Joe Biden's request to provide more security assistance to the war-torn nation. Still, many lawmakers a...

 

Rep. Matt Gaetz files resolution to oust Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz filed a resolution late Monday to oust Kevin McCarthy as speaker, setting up a likely showdown vote in the House in the days ahead. The far-right Republican from Florida has for months threatened to use a...

 

McCarthy rejects Senate spending bill while scrambling for a House plan that averts a shutdown

WASHINGTON (AP) — A government shutdown appeared all but inevitable as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy dug in Thursday, vowing he will not take up Senate legislation designed to keep the federal government fully running despite House Republicans' s...

 

Members of Congress break for August with no clear path to avoiding a shutdown this fall

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers broke for their August recess this week with work on funding the government largely incomplete, fueling worries about whether Congress will be able to avoid a partial government shutdown this fall. Congress has until O...

 

House Republicans push through defense bill limiting abortion access and halting diversity efforts

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House passed a sweeping defense bill Friday that provides an expected 5.2% pay raise for service members but strays from traditional military policy with Republicans add-ons blocking abortion coverage, diversity initiatives a...

 

Debt limit standoff brings tough talk, little action as Biden, world leaders watch for progress

WASHINGTON (AP) — Debt limit negotiations between the White House and House Republicans hung over the weekend with tough talk but little action, as President Joe Biden and world leaders watched from afar hoping high-stakes discussions would make p...

 

Debt limit talks in standstill as Republicans, White House face 'real differences'

WASHINGTON (AP) — Debt limit talks came to an abrupt standstill Friday after Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said it's time to "pause" negotiations, and a White House official acknowledged there are "real differences" that are making talks d...

 

House approves trans athlete ban for girls and women's teams

WASHINGTON (AP) — Transgender athletes whose biological sex assigned at birth was male would be barred from competing on girls or women's sports teams at federally supported schools and colleges under legislation pushed through Thursday by House Repu...

 

Senate passes $1.7 trillion bill to fund gov't, aid Ukraine

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate passed a massive $1.7 trillion spending bill Thursday that finances federal agencies through September and provides another significant round of military and economic aid to Ukraine one day after Ukrainian President V...

 

Congress votes to avert rail strike amid dire warnings

WASHINGTON (AP) — Legislation to avert what could have been an economically ruinous freight rail strike won final approval in Congress on Thursday as lawmakers responded quickly to President Joe Biden's call for federal intervention in a long-running...

 

A bump and a miss: Saudi oil cut slaps down Biden's outreach

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden on Thursday effectively acknowledged the failure of one of his biggest and most humiliating foreign policy gambles: a fist-bump with the de-facto leader of Saudi Arabia, the crown prince associated with human r...

 

Manchin's big energy deal draws pushback from many Dems

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats desperately needed the vote of Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia to get their signature legislative priority across the finish. So they did what Washington does best: They cut a deal. To help land his support for a bill h...

 

Semiconductor bill unites Sanders, the right - in opposition

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bill to boost semiconductor production in the United States has managed to do nearly the unthinkable — unite the democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders and the fiscally conservative right. The bill making its way through the...

 

4th grade Uvalde survivor: 'I don't want it to happen again'

WASHINGTON (AP) — An 11-year-old girl who survived the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, recounted in video testimony to Congress on Wednesday how she covered herself with a dead classmate's blood to avoid being shot and "...

 

Senate OKs overhaul of baby formula rules in aid program

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate approved a bill Thursday aimed at easing the baby formula shortage for families participating in a government assistance program that accounts for about half of all formula purchased in the United States. The House p...

 

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