In the fight for nonpartisan redistricting, “36 current and former members of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, filed yet another amicus brief that includes the chairman of the Freedom Caucus and the former chairman of the Progressive Caucus.” Notable signers include: Reps. Rod Blum (R-IA 01), Mike Coffman (R-CO 06), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL 26), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA 08), and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ 05). (Politico)
DACA. Some vulnerable Republicans weighed in on Trump’s DACA decision, many issuing statements supporting legislative action to protect recipients of the program. “The Trump administration’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program next year could have a broad effect on Democratic efforts to retake control of the House in 2018, and nowhere more so than in California, where more than a fourth of the estimated 800,000 recipients, often called Dreamers, are thought to live. … Stories of the 200,000 or so Californians affected by this decision will likely be a recurring theme of campaigns for the next year” for Democrats trying to oust nine of the state’s 14 GOP members. (Los Angeles Times)
Two “targeted members” — Reps. Ed Royce (R-CA 39) and Mimi Walters (R-CA 45) — “have spoken favorably of proposed legislation that would allow many of those brought to the country illegally as children to remain after DACA’s scheduled end next March.” Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA 49) “indicated he might also support such legislation.” (Orange County Register)
Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME 02) released a statement in support of a legislative solution for DACA recipients: “A child should not be held responsible for the actions of parents who chose to break our immigration laws.” (Portland Press-Herald)
Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX 23), “who represents a swing district in West Texas, said Congress should provide a ‘permanent, legislative solution’ for the program that shields roughly 800,000 immigrants from deportation, including roughly 124,000 in Texas.”
“Asked whether he supports allowing DACA recipients to remain in the U.S.,” Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX 32) “noted he has long favored a guest-worker plan that would take them into account. On Monday, he told CNN that granting legal status as a guest worker is the ‘minimum’ Congress should do.” (Dallas Morning News)
Meanwhile, dozens of House challengers have seized on the issue.
Former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ 01), who is challenging Rep. Martha McSally (R-AZ 02): “This is another self-inflicted wound to our country, courtesy of a President who cannot see beyond his own demons.” (release)
Stem cell biologist Hans Keirstead (D), who hopes to unseat Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA 48): “Washington needs to forget about the party labels, remember what this country represents, and do what is right for the American people by passing comprehensive immigration reform.” (release)
And former Army Ranger Jason Crow (D): “DACA has allowed thousands of innocent children the opportunity to achieve the American dream, contribute to our economy and proudly serve our country. Yet,” Coffman “literally called the DREAM Act ‘a nightmare’ as he voted against it in Congress.” (release)
MONEY MATTERS. The Hill noted the five House challengers with the biggest campaign war chests. In NY-19, attorney Antonio Delgado (D) and businessman Brian Flynn (D) both raised six figures. In CA-49, environmental attorney Mike Levin (D) raised more than $600,000. In MN-03, gelato tycoon Dean Phillips (D) hauled $530,000. In NC-09, clean-energy expert Dan McCready (D) has raised nearly $460,000 for his bid against Rep. Robert Pittenger (R). In TX-07, nonprofit executive Alex Triantaphyllis (D) raised more than $450,000.
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"The Trump administration on Thursday announced that the U.S. will now officially act to deter and respond to cyberattacks with offensive actions against foreign adversaries. The U.S.'s new cyber strategy, signed by President Trump, marks the federal government officially taking a more aggressive approach to cyber threats presented from across the globe."
The Trump Administration will sanction China over the purchase of Russian-made fighter jets and anti-aircraft weapons systems. "The sanctions are being imposed pursuant to the 2017 sanctions law punishing Russian interference in the 2016 elections, which threatens to sanction any third party that conducts a 'significant transaction' with the Russian defense industry." State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert cited "the delivery to China of Su-35 combat aircraft in 2017 and S-400 surface-to-air missile system-related equipment in 2018" as the transactions that led to the sanctions.
President Trump named retiring Rep. Darrell Issa "to head the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, setting up what could be a contentious confirmation battle in the Senate." As former House Oversight Committee chairman, Issa accused top IRS officials "of targeting conservative groups for political purposes, led the charge to hold former Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt, and accused President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton of trying to covering up the Benghazi, Libya, terrorist attacks in 2012." If confirmed, Issa would lead the Trump Administration's multi-front effort to renegotiate more favorable trade deals.