Sen. Dean Heller, one of the biggest advocates for unemployment insurance in Congress, called Speaker John Boehner on Tuesday afternoon to push the House to take up legislation extending the insurance benefits. But that chat ended just about where it began: It went nowhere.
Heller spokeswoman Chandler Smith described the conversation as “good,” but added: “Speaker Boehner relayed the same message that he gave to the White House. Senator Heller will continue to work to get something done.”
Boehner spokesman Michael Steel offered the same synopsis. “The Speaker spoke by telephone with Sen. Heller today, and told him the same thing he has told the White House since before Christmas: we’re willing to look at a plan that is paid-for and includes something to help create jobs. Unfortunately [Senate Majority Leader Harry] Reid ruled out adding jobs provisions,” Steel said in an email.
Time is running out for Heller and other advocates to get the Senate legislation through the House. The bill extends unemployment-insurance benefits through the end of May — just over four weeks away. Heller and Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., said earlier this month that if the House did not take up the legislation soon there would come a point when negotiators would have to start over. “There is a very short window,” Reed said.
But Heller pointed out Tuesday that the Senate bill also includes retroactive benefits for the millions of Americans who have lost their unemployment insurance since the program expired on Dec. 28. “We need to get this retroactively done to help these families that need the money,” the Nevada Republican said.
A handful of House Republicans have written to Boehner asking for a vote on unemployment-insurance benefits, while a few other Republicans have floated the possibility of attaching approval of the Keystone pipeline and other job-creation proposals to the bill in order to pass the Boehner test. But several lawmakers said that the issue has not been a topic of serious discussion within the House Republican Conference.
What We're Following See More »
After keeping the information private for most of the lead-up to the debate on Monday, it has been revealed that longtime Clinton aide Philippe Reines has been playing the role of Donald Trump in her debate prep. Reines knows Clinton better than most, able to identify both her strengths and weaknesses, and his selection for a sparring partner shows that Clinton is preparing for the brash and confrontational Donald Trump many have come to expect.
- A national Washington Post/ABC News poll shows Clinton leading Trump by just two points among likely voters, 46% to 44%.
- A national Bloomberg poll out Monday morning by Selzer & Co. has Clinton and Trump tied at 46% in a two-way race, and Trump ahead 43% to 41% in a four-way race.
- A CNN/ORC poll in Colorado shows likely voters’ support for Trump at 42%, 41% for Clinton, and a CNN/ORC poll in Pennsylvania has Clinton at 45% and Trump at 44%.
- A Portland Press Herald/UNH survey in Maine has Clinton leading Trump in ME-01 and Trump ahead in ME-02.
More than 30 times, in the case of some donors. Long before Cruz endorsed Trump—and before he even snubbed the nominee at the Republican National Convention—"the senator quietly began renting his vast donor email file to his former rival, pocketing at least tens of thousands of dollars, and more likely hundreds of thousands, that can be used to bankroll the Texan’s own political future."
"A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll found that 34% of registered voters think the three presidential debates would be extremely or quite important in helping them decide whom to support for president. About 11% of voters are considered 'debate persuadables'—that is, they think the debates are important and are either third-party voters or only loosely committed to either major-party candidate."
Will he or won't he? That's the question surrounding Donald Trump and his on-again, off-again threats to bring onetime Bill Clinton paramour Gennifer Flowers to the debate as his guest. An assistant to flowers initially said she'd be there, but Trump campaign chief Kellyanne Conway "said on ABC’s 'This Week' that the Trump campaign had not invited Flowers to the debate, but she didn’t rule out the possibility of Flowers being in the audience."