The special Jan. 6 committee subpoenaed five House Republicans, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, for their testimony related to the early 2021 Capitol attack after the lawmakers declined to sit for interviews. The move to subpoena sitting members of Congress, which is virtually without precedent on Capitol Hill, constitutes the most aggressive inquiry made by the panel thus far. (Politico)
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul (R) prevented the Senate from swiftly passing a $40 billion Ukraine aid package after leaders refused to allow a vote to add a provision that would create a special inspector general to provide oversight of the funding’s disbursement. The bill, which passed the House in overwhelming and bipartisan fashion, is now expected to clear the Senate next week. (CNN)
A grand jury investigation is underway into whether classified White House documents that ended up at Mar-a-Lago were mishandled, according to two people familiar with the matter. Federal prosecutors are said to have subpoenaed the National Archives and Records Administration for the documents and to have requested interviews with people who worked under former President Donald Trump during the final days of his presidency. (The New York Times)
The White House on Thursday announced new steps to try to ease the ongoing baby formula shortage, as the Biden administration fends off political attacks ahead of the congressional midterm elections. The steps include urging states to expand formula access for people who receive benefits from the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, cracking down on price gouging of formula sales and increasing imports.
U.S. President Joe Biden opened a gathering of Southeast Asian leaders with a promise to spend $150 million on their infrastructure, security, pandemic preparedness and other efforts aimed at countering the influence of rival China.
Josh Boak and Darlene Superville, The Associated Press
Mayors, police chiefs and other local officials were invited to the White House on Friday to share with President Joe Biden how they are spending money from the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package on policing and public safety programs.
The US State Department outlined plans to boost pressure on China over what it called “horrific abuses” of Uyghur and other ethnic minorities in the Xinjiang region, an issue that is becoming one of the biggest points of tension between the world’s two biggest economies.
Glenn Thrush and Lisa Friedman, The New York Times
The agency has announced a series of policies intended to elevate those efforts, including the creation of an office meant to address the “harm caused by environmental crime, pollution and climate change.”
The families of four U.S. citizens detained in Iran years ago on espionage charges are appealing to President Biden to secure their release, as nuclear talks with Tehran that were expected to include their release have stalled.
The US intelligence community is carrying out a sweeping internal review of how it assesses the fighting power of foreign militaries amid mounting pressure from key lawmakers on Capitol Hill who say officials have failed twice in one year on the two major foreign policy crises faced by the Biden administration in Ukraine and Afghanistan.
House Republicans are treading carefully in their initial reactions after the special committee investigating last year’s attack on the U.S. Capitol took the remarkable step of issuing subpoenas for their cooperation.
The Senate confirmed Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell to a second four-year term that is shaping up to be every bit as trying as his first term as the central bank faces the highest inflation in 40 years.
The House will follow the Senate’s lead and take action on legislation to provide police protection for the families of Supreme Court justices, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced Thursday night. House Democrats, though, want to go further and extend those protections to judicial clerks and court staffers if needed.
A federal judge in Louisiana appears poised to step in as early as Friday to block the Biden administration from ending pandemic-related asylum restrictions later this month, something Republicans and some Democrats have pushed to do in Congress.
U.S. stock index futures rebounded on Friday at the end of a bumpy week marked by rising concerns over tighter monetary policy and slowing economic growth, while Twitter plunged after Elon Musk put his deal for the social media company on hold.
Shipping traffic in and out of Russia has remained relatively strong in the past few months as companies have raced to fulfill contracts for purchases of energy and other goods before the full force of global sanctions goes into effect.
The trial of a Russian soldier accused of killing a Ukrainian civilian opened Friday, the first war crimes trial since Moscow’s invasion of its neighbor. Scores of journalists packed inside a small courtroom in the Ukrainian capital where the suspect appeared in a small glass cage for the start of a trial that has drawn international attention amid accusations of repeated atrocities by Russian forces.
Robert Barnes and Lauren Lumpkin, The Washington Post
In his first public address since the explosive leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion he wrote that would overturn Roe v. Wade, Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. breezed through a detailed examination of statutory textualism, and renewed a disagreement over the court’s decision saying federal discrimination law protects gay and transgender workers. But he was a little stumped by the final audience question from a crowd at Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University: Are he and the other justices at a place where they could get a nice meal together?
Louisiana Republicans voted Thursday night to gut a highly controversial law that would have classified abortion as homicide and allowed prosecutors to criminally charge women who undergo the procedure. The measure attracted national attention when it passed out of committee last Wednesday with a 7-to-2 vote, less than 48 hours after the leak of a draft opinion that showed the Supreme Court is potentially poised to overturn Roe v. Wade.
California’s minimum wage will rise to $15.50 an hour for workers at all businesses, large and small, on Jan. 1, 2023, under an automatic inflation trigger built into state law and never previously activated, the governor’s office projected on Thursday. The announcement came a day before Governor Gavin Newsom, a first-term Democrat, was slated to present his revised budget plan to the state legislature controlled by his party, including a proposed $11.8 billion inflation-relief spending package.
West Virginia coal miners on Thursday launched a campaign urging Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) to support a Democratic budget reconciliation bill that would extend funding for black lung patients. President Biden’s Build Back Better Act, which Manchin torpedoed late last year, included Manchin’s bill to extend an increased coal excise tax that funds benefits for coal miners suffering from black lung disease.
Two weeks ago, Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida appeared with the Fox News host Laura Ingraham for a town hall that lasted the full hour of her prime-time show. That kind of airtime tends to be reserved only for Donald Trump, but Mr. DeSantis has had a meteoric rise. He’s far and away the most popular potential 2024 presidential candidate among Republicans after Mr. Trump.
Thomas R. Gray and Jeffery A. Jenkins, Cambridge University Press
Many recorded roll calls in Congress each year are votes on bills that have no chance of becoming law, or are purely symbolic, or are procedural without policy content. Yet models of voting and measurement models of member preferences make assumptions that vote choices are largely about utility derived from policies.