PHOENIX (AP) — Sen. Jon Kyl is resigning from the seat he was appointed to less than four months ago following the death of John McCain, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey announced Friday. Kyl's decision means the Republican governor will need to appoint another replacement lawmaker. The decision by Kyl, 76, was not unexpected. He had retired from the Senate in 2012 and said when he took the appointment in September that he only committed to serving until the end of the year. His resignation is effective Dec. 31. Ducey sidestepped selecting a longer-term replacement after McCain died on Aug. 25, saying he picked Kyl because he was "the best possible person, regardless of politics" for the job. But Kyl
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republicans have picked Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach's top deputy to fill a vacant state Senate seat, making the chamber more conservative. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that Assistant Secretary of State Eric Rucker will replace Insurance Commissioner-elect Vicki Schmidt of Topeka. Rucker will serve the remaining two years of Schmidt's four-year Senate term. The Topeka-area district's Republican precinct committee members voted 117-54 Friday evening for Rucker over former state Rep. Joe Patton. Schmidt is a GOP moderate who served 14 years in the Senate and was its health committee chairwoman before being elected insurance commissioner. Rucker is a conservative
JASPER, Ind. (AP) — A southern Indiana mayor is stepping down to take a senior post with the office of Republican U.S. Sen.-elect Mike Braun. Jasper Mayor Terry Seitz announced Thursday that he will resign Jan. 1 to take a staff post with Braun, who unseated incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly in the Nov. 6 election. Braun is a multimillionaire businessman whose auto parts company is based in Jasper, about 40 miles northeast of Evansville. The (Jasper) Herald reports that Braun said in a statement that Seitz's skills and passion make him "a tremendous asset" for his Senate staff. Seitz was elected to two terms as mayor. His current term would have concluded at the end of 2019. Seitz's mayoral
The Latest on the congressional response to the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi (all times local): 7 p.m. Senators have voted to recommend that the U.S. end its assistance to Saudi Arabia for the war in Yemen and put the blame for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi squarely on Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The votes are a direct challenge to both the longtime Middle East ally and President Donald Trump's handling of the relationship. Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who co-sponsored the Yemen resolution, calls the vote a "historic moment." The bipartisan votes came two months after the Saudi journalist's slaying at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and after
OTTAWA — Justin Trudeau says his government hopes to make legal changes that will cement his transformation of the Senate into a more independent, non-partisan chamber, making it harder for a future prime minister to turn back the clock. The prime minister says his government will amend the Parliament of Canada Act — the law that spells out the powers and privileges of MPs and senators — to better reflect the new reality in the upper house, where most senators now sit as independents unaffiliated with any political party. "We're going to try to make it fair," Trudeau said in a year-end roundtable interview with the Ottawa bureau of The Canadian Press. "We're going to try to do it before the
“The attacks against Senator-elect Williams are only happening because the Pennsylvania Republican Party, like their counterparts across the country, are sore losers,” Sinceré Harris, executive director of the state Democratic Party, said in a statement. “From Wisconsin to Michigan to North Carolina, and now Pennsylvania, the Republican Party has stooped to trying to subvert the will of the people and attempting to flout the democratic process as a last resort when they cannot win elections.”
WASHINGTON (AP) - Nothing says, "Is it over yet?" quite like Senate Democratic leader Charles Schumer propping up his feet on the chair next to him. The casual vibe in the normally stuffy Senate was just one sign that the end of an ugly 115th Congress can't come soon enough, even for its own members. There's been House-like shouting on the Senate floor. Both chambers rang with customary farewell speeches from members who are moving on, some forced out by the midterm elections. And in the House, a few lawmakers have ghosted the whole scene as the sun sets on the only Congress so far under President Donald Trump. Parties and Christmas cookies only soothe so much in the chilly Capitol after two
Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill says she won't run for another office after her term expires next month, but that she will remain active in Democratic politics. On Thursday, she will give her final Senate floor speech before she leaves office in January. In an interview with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch from her Senate office, McCaskill squashed any speculation that she'd run for Missouri governor by saying she's done running for office. Instead, she said she's planning a yet-to-be-announced initiative and that she sees potential in the non-elected public role that former Missouri Sen. John Danforth, a Republican, has taken since he left office 24 years ago.
AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A Republican incumbent is dropping his request for a recount after losing the first congressional election in U.S. history held under a system by which voters rank candidates in order of preference. Rep. Bruce Poliquin lost to Democratic State Rep. Jared Golden in November. Poliquin challenged the system in federal court, and a judge ruled against him Thursday. He also requested a recount, which has been taking place in Augusta. Poliquin tweeted Friday that he believe it's important to end the recount, in part because of the coming holidays. He also says he's still evaluating the possibility of appealing the judge's decision on the constitutionality of the candidate-ranking
Two lawmakers are asking the Justice Department and FBI to look into whether former U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun lied to a Senate panel in testimony about the handling of sex-abuse allegations against Larry Nassar. At issue is Blackmun's refuted claim that he discussed the case with USOC staff after receiving word of Nassar's potential crimes from the USA Gymnastics president at the time, Steve Penny. A report from the Ropes and Gray law firm released earlier this week concluded that nobody on the USOC staff could corroborate Blackmun's account of a meeting. Blackmun had told the investigators there had been a meeting, but later changed his story upon hearing there was no corroboration.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is racing to avoid a partial government shutdown over President Donald Trump's border wall. Lawmakers are awaiting the White House's next move. The president met Friday with top aides to discuss strategy. Earlier this week Trump said he'd be "proud" to shut down the government over the $5 billion he wants for the wall along the southern border. But now his tone has softened. Trump doesn't have the votes from the Republican-controlled Congress to fund the wall at the level he wants. Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi made a counter offer of no more than $1.6 billion. That would not be for the wall, but for fencing upgrades and other border security. Without
OTTAWA — An Ontario judge has delivered a blow to Sen. Mike Duffy in his bid for financial restitution over his dramatic and protracted suspension without pay five years ago, removing the Senate as a target in his multimillion-dollar lawsuit. Justice Sally Gomery said in a ruling Friday that the Senate's decision to suspend Duffy is protected by parliamentary privilege — a centuries-old right designed to protect legislators from having to answer to judges for doing their jobs — meaning Duffy can't take the Senate to court over its actions. Gomery is striking the Senate from Duffy's lawsuit, which sought more than $7.8 million from the upper chamber, the RCMP and the federal government. In a statement
NASHVILLE, Ind. (Howey Politics) – Last year I told you that the coming showdown for one of Indiana's U.S. Senate seats would probably bring about a $100 million donnybrook. Once the dust settled, once “China Mike” and “Mexico Joe” finished raising all their money, running all of those TV ads, the total according to Federal Election Commission filings and a compilation by the Center for Responsive Politics has come to $110 million. No wonder you longed for that beer commercial with an old salt whistling under a holiday-lit palm tree. Nearly $70 million of that amount came from outside groups, more than doubling what such sources spent in Indiana's 2012 U.S. Senate race when Democrat Joe Donnelly
The past two weeks have seen the emergence of divergent public interpretations of highly classified CIA assessments on the question of whether Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, ordered the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. On one side, U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said respectively that there was “no smoking gun” and “no direct evidence” that the crown prince authorized Khashoggi's murder. On the other, several senators emerged from a briefing by CIA Director Gina Haspel and pronounced that they had no doubt of Mohammed bin Salman's guilt. Who's telling the truth? Perhaps all of them. The two cabinet secretaries deployed carefully