Happy weekend, folks. Let’s take a minute to catch up before everything heats up on Monday with Congress getting back in town.
Be on the lookout: Liberal GOP threatens health care deal
Liberal Senate Republicans backed away from Ted Cruz’s health care proposal that would allow insurers to sell less-expensive plans, and they're also pondering keeping Obamacare taxes to appease the opposition.
If Majority Leader Mitch McConnell can’t get his party to 50 votes, he warned they’ll have to pass an even weaker version.
And remember: They have a lot more on their plates than just health care.
Next week’s fireworks show:
Two months after the firing of former FBI Director James Comey, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing Wednesday for his proposed replacement, Christopher Wray.
You may remember Wray as the prosecutor who busted up a D.C.-area Islamist terror cell in 2003.
Next week’s deadline:
Congressmen are calling on the administration to delay permanently lifting sanctions on Sudan’s genocidal, terror-supporting regime.
CNN’s worst week ever?
With Congress out of town and the president en route to Europe earlier this week, all eyes were on the threat CNN made to a private citizen who posted a GIF they didn’t like. And then they doubled down.
Top-lawyer-turned-senator Ted Cruz thinks CNN may have broken the law.
Conservative Review Editor-in-Chief Mark Levin couldn’t hide his disgust of the “out of control” and “grotesque” media, and the “schmuck” Jim Acosta.
This week’s intrigue:
Congress’ upcoming push to lower taxes has reportedly found a new opponent: Steve Bannon.
This week’s deep-state problem:
A Senate panel has found that leaks of sensitive information from the federal government are happening “at the rate of one per day.”
This week’s poll:
Turns out voters are really getting behind President Trump’s travel suspension. But you’d never know that, if the MSM is all you had to go off of.
This week’s “duh” moment:
In the filming of a new HBO documentary, a few senators read the Constitution … after several of them complained that they don’t know what the words in the document mean.
This week’s election watch:
Former embattled Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore has surged to the head of the pack for Jeff Sessions’ old Senate seat, according to at least one internal poll.
Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy might retire next year, which would give GOP leadership a LOT of political cover going into the race (not necessarily a great thing for the conservative agenda).
And while Speaker Paul Ryan is trying to move his party toward lowering taxes before winter, his Democrat challenger is open to raising them … by $32 trillion!
This week’s Scalise update:
House Majority Whip Steve Scalise’s recovery seemed to be going well early this week when one of his colleagues said: He's “just out of bed. He’s not able to eat yet, but he is getting better.”
But things took a bad turn late Thursday night, when his condition was downgraded to “serious” due to infection concerns sending him back to the ICU.
This week’s quote:
Off the Hill:
Democrats are trying to take Franken's case to the place where allegations go to die.
"They're slamming it to millions of Americans ... because they will not cut government."