GOP leader McConnell cancels most of Senate's August recess

GOP leader McConnell cancels most of Senate's August recess

In addition to nominations, McConnell said Senate also needed to spend some of August passing individual appropriations bills in order to avoid a last minute massive spending package, like it did in March.

Their plan, highlighted in a letter Schumer sent to McConnell on Wednesday, is to push for votes on legislation that would lower the cost of health care and prescription drugs.

Other senators quickly weighed in on losing their recess, with some praising McConnell for the decision.

McConnell also said late last week at an event in Kentucky that there was "not much" Congress could do legislatively on tariffs.

In a surprise move Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced he's putting the kibosh on most of the Senate's traditional August recess. Polls show that issue is a top public concern, and Democrats believe the GOP's failed effort to repeal Obama's health care law previous year has put Republicans on the defensive.

"What I'm in favor of is getting bills passed that we have to do for the country", McConnell said.

They're trying to prevent the moderates from joining with Democrats to pass the "Dreamer" protections, which polls suggest are popular, but which would be a setback for GOP leaders and expose the majority to complaints from the conservative base.

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., said it's too early to say whether the House would take up Corker's proposal.

He added, "We have enough work to do for the American people that we should be here during those weeks".

USA soldier killed in attack by al Qaeda affiliate in Somalia
The statement did not clarify whether the "partner force member" was part of the Somali or Kenyan armed forces. But the extremist group still carries out suicide attacks across Somalia.

Republicans have tried endlessly to the repeal the Affordable Care Act since it was signed into law in 2010. It's unclear how much Democratic support exists and there's now no commitment their House counterparts would follow suit.

Republicans, who control both chambers of Congress, are likely anxious that a full five-week break would leave insufficient time to hammer out spending, increasing the possibility of a crippling government shutdown at the height of campaign season.

Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, a senior GOP appropriator and chairman of the Energy-Water spending subcommittee, said he did not know exactly how many weeks of August senators would end up being at the Capitol, but he suggested it should be dictated by the workload. "So, if you've got post-cloture time pending on a nominee, you can't get on appropriations bills, you can't get on legislation".

The August recess dates back to times before air conditioning when Washington became unbearably hot in the summer.

Several aides told CNN that for months the view was it was more productive to work quietly to register the concerns with the White House, and with the president himself, rather than pose an outright legislative challenge. "I strongly believe there is a plan in place to lead us to better trade deals".

"We have a lot of tactics available to us", Toomey said of his leverage to force a vote on tariffs.

And of course, the month of August will be well spent if it means more judicial nominations are confirmed and more judges seated.

As president, Donald Trump has insulted United States allies and top Republicans, threatened nuclear war on Twitter, shared top-secret intelligence with Russian Federation, and pushed immigration policies that are ripping apart families and damaging the US's image overseas.

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