Ellen Knickmeyer Associated Press Published 1:14 PM EST Jan 16, 2019 Washington – Acting Environmental Protection Agency chief Andrew Wheeler described himself as a champion of deregulation and the environment at his confirmation hearing Wednesday, even as a leading Democrat called him “just as extreme” as predecessor Scott Pruitt. The Republican-controlled Senate Environment and Public Works Committee was considering Wheeler’s nomination as agency administrator. Wheeler began his testimony Wednesday over the chants of environmental protesters, who shouted “Shut Down Wheeler” in the committee room and the hallway outside. The EPA under Wheeler has moved forward on the Trump administration’s deregulatory aims since Pruitt resigned in July amid ethics scandals. That includes easing the mileage standards that cars and trucks will have to meet, relaxing measures on climate-changing carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants and removing … [Read more...] about Democrats hit Wheeler’s rollbacks at EPA during hearing
By Associated Press | PUBLISHED: January 16, 2019 at 5:28 am | UPDATED: January 16, 2019 at 5:42 am BOSTON — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is planning a road trip to Washington with Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker. The Democrat said in his annual State of the City address Tuesday that he and the Republican governor are hoping to show a “united front” as they meet members of a Republican-led Senate and Democratic-led House of Representatives. Walsh said the bipartisan pair will push for greater “investments in housing and transit and the environment.” In the speech Walsh outlined a series of goals including getting 20,000 Bostonians into better paying jobs by 2022. Other goals include creating more affordable housing, keeping tenants in their homes, reducing violence, helping the homeless, and grappling with the challenges posed by climate change. Walsh also said the city has been named a finalist for the 2020 NAACP convention. … [Read more...] about Democratic Boston mayor planning DC trip with GOP governor
House Democratic leaders are expanding the roster for the chamber’s coveted tax-writing panel after an outcry from lawmakers about the lack of Hispanic representation on the committee. Rep. Jimmy Gomez, a second-term Democrat from California, was tapped to join the ranks of the Ways and Means Committee on Monday night, nearly a week after leadership announced the Democratic slate for the panel.Story Continued Below The move comes after multiple Democrats voiced alarm about the lack of Latinos on Ways and Means, one of the most sought-after committees in the House. Without the addition of Gomez, Rep. Linda Sánchez (D-Calif.) would have been the only Hispanic lawmaker on the committee out of two dozen Democrats. “In terms of the increased diversity of the incoming class, we should have more Latinos on Ways and Means,” Sánchez told POLITICO. “Adding Jimmy will be a good first step, but clearly we need to do more.” The Congressional Hispanic … [Read more...] about House panel adds member after complaints from Hispanic Democrats
The White House ran quickly into the limits of trying to bypass Speaker Nancy Pelosi in shutdown negotiations when rank-and-file House Democrats declined an invitation to lunch Tuesday with President Donald Trump. The administration is trying to peel off Democratic support for Trump's demand for border wall money and negotiate directly with centrist lawmakers and some newly elected freshmen, including those in districts where Trump is popular. Pelosi gave her blessing for lawmakers to accept the White House invitation, but White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said "unfortunately" no Democrats accepted. The White House did not immediately say which Democrats were invited, and several freshmen Democrats contacted by The Associated Press said they had not received an invitation. One centrist Democrat said the administration's strategy was "grasping at straws." 'Net Pay: $0.00': How the Shutdown Is Affecting the Country Sanders said instead the president would be dining … [Read more...] about Democrats Rebuff Trump Invite, Thwarting Effort to Bypass Pelosi
For two years, Democrats, and their base of supporters, have craved the chance to conduct rigorous oversight of President Donald Trump and his administration. Thanks to the 2018 midterm, they now have it — but figuring out how to put that authority to use is no easy task. With potential topics of investigation into Trump administration actions numbering in the dozens — as many as 85, by one estimate — Democrats have to make choices about what to prioritize. Should they come out of the gate with an investigative salvo into the Trump campaign’s alleged hush money payments to Stormy Daniels in 2016? What about looking into how much Trump’s businesses are benefiting from his presidency? The administration’s response to the hurricane that devastated Puerto Rico? Its botched ban on transgender Americans serving in the military? The list goes on and on, and Democrats aren’t exactly united on how best to proceed — both in terms of what to tackle … [Read more...] about With control of the U.S. House, Democrats have real power to investigate the Trump administration. But where should they start?