Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., will meet with Speaker John Boehner later Tuesday to encourage the House to renew unemployment-insurance benefits for millions of jobless Americans.
Heller said he is not certain whether the two will meet in person or speak by phone, but that he would press the speaker to take up legislation passed by the Senate earlier this month. That bill would renew the benefits through the end of May and provide retroactive checks for the long-term unemployed who have lost their benefits since the program expired Dec. 28.
Asked what he plans to tell the speaker, Heller said: “Let’s move this legislation.”¦ It’s important that we get this done.”
Boehner has long said he will not bring the legislation to the House floor without a separate jobs bill attached. He has also expressed reservations about the reimbursement checks, citing a letter from the National Association of State Workforce Agencies that indicated that states could have trouble providing retroactive benefits. Many states have stopped keeping track of beneficiaries since the program expired, the association wrote.
But Heller has expressed some optimism, noting that a handful of House Republicans support the bill and have written to Boehner asking for a floor vote.
Still, the clock is ticking. With the Senate bill slated to expire at the end of May, the House has little time to act. But Heller said the retroactive benefits alone are important enough to keep moving forward. “Of course I’m concerned about [the package expiring]. And I want the House to move on that right away. But, yeah, that’s a concern.”¦ We need to get this retroactively done to help these families that need the money,” he said.
Asked whether he believes the speaker is open to moving on the Senate bill, Heller said: “I’ll find out this afternoon.”
What We're Following See More »
"Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has appointed a veteran legal insider with strong personal ties to the Obama administration to serve as his special adviser focused exclusively on fixing the Washington region’s troubled Metro system. Kathryn Thomson, who was expected to leave her job as the Department of Transportation’s top lawyer, instead will stay on as Foxx’s special adviser on Metro oversight." She'll start this week.
While Donald Trump's poll numbers are steadily climbing, he "trails far behind" Hillary Clinton "in organizing in key general-election states. Ohio ... presents both ... Trump's best opportunity to carry a big swing state and reveals his team's steep logistical challenges. After winning the GOP nomination on a tight budget with a skeletal staff ... Trump doesn't have any general-election staff in the state, and senior aides in New York and Washington haven't made contact with the state Republican Party. Efforts to recruit the state's experienced operatives who helped elect" John Kasich "have so far been unsuccessful, people familiar with the matter said." Clinton "has a small team of full-time aides in Ohio."
One of the last high-profile holdouts against Donald Trump appears to have finally come around. "Graham urged GOP donors at a private fundraiser Saturday in Florida to unite behind Trump's campaign and stressed the importance of keeping likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton from the White House. The fundraiser was hosted by former U.S. Ambassador to Portugal Al Hoffman, a former Republican National Committee finance chairman who also co-chaired Sen. John McCain's 2008 presidential bid."
Two new national polls released this weekend show Donald Trump running neck and neck with Hillary Clinton. First up: an NBC/Wall Street Journal survey shows a three-point lead for Clinton, 46%-43%. She led by 11 percentage points in April. Next is an ABC News/Washington Post poll actually shows Donald Trump ahead, 46%-44%. "Greater voter registration among Republicans is one factor: Clinton’s 6-point lead among all adults, 48-42 percent in a general election matchup, switches to essentially a dead heat among registered voters."