Oklahoma became the fifth state to allow the death penalty for certain sex crimes. Anyone convicted twice for rape, sodomy or lewd molestation involving children under 14 can face the death penalty. "The last message you want to give an offender
In one of the lesser-known perks of power on Capitol Hill, lawmakers are using taxpayer-funded databases to cultivate constituents more attentively than ever. Chabot -- a six-term legislator from Cincinnati who finds himself imperiled this year after
On April 16, the New York Times ran a full-page ad from contact lens producer Bausch and Lomb, announcing the recall of its "ReNu with MoistureLoc" rewetting solution, and warning the 30 million American wearers of soft contact lens
In the rift between Congress and the Justice Department, Americans side overwhelmingly with law enforcement: Regardless of precedent and the separation of powers, 86% say the FBI should search a Congressman's office if it has a warrant. That v
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist said he had talked the issue over with Attorney General Gonzales and concluded that the FBI acted appropriately."I think there's allegations of criminal activity, and the American people need to have the law
Now we know what it takes to make Congress mad enough to stand up for constitutional rights. When the government snoops on your phone calls and records without warrants, lawmakers barely kick up a fuss. But when the target is a fellow congressman - o
A Zogby Interactive poll finds that US voters are more distrustful than ever of political and corporate leaders. Only 3% believe Congress is trustworthy; 7% think business leaders are; 24% say President Bush can be trusted; and 29% trust the courts.
The US Senate has given the Bush administration an extended blank check on domestic electronic phone surveillance. At no point did senators make any serious suggestion about imposing any new legal or congressional oversight procedures on the vastly e
[We're tough. Vote for us.] The US House of Representatives would accept a narrower Senate bill to boost fines on television and radio stations for decency violations if differences cannot be worked out between the two chambers.
[A bit late.] Before a vote Friday on a veterans spending bill, Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R) of Texas rose to object to the first of some $500 million in military construction projects. They were "pork projects wrapped in the American flag," he
The war of words between Continental Airlines and Virgin America over Virgin’s bid to begin U.S. flights is reaching new heights this week, drawing members of both parties into debate over protectionism. Virgin requested regulatory permission to o
Giving money to farmers, traditionally a popular election-year idea, is growing less popular in this election year. The Senate wants to spend nearly $4 billion to help farmers cope with high fuel prices and damage from severe weather. House leaders o
In recent years, Congress has made a fine art of gaming the tax code. But it has just outdone itself. It's about to pass a bill that includes a measure Congress is portraying to upper-income taxpayers as a big tax cut, while at the same time it c
A $2.7 trillion budget plan pending before the House would raise the federal debt ceiling to nearly $10 trillion, less than 2 months after Congress last raised the the federal government's borrowing limit.
Democratic leaders, confident they will control the House after November, are laying plans for a legislative blitz during their first week in power that would raise the minimum wage, roll back parts of the Republican prescription drug law, implement
The federal government spends about $20 billion a year on farm subsidies under a law due for overhaul by Congress in 2007. Mainline farm groups support a continuation of the 2002 law, which boosted crop supports sharply. Congress would be wiser if
Arlen Specter, chairman of the Senate judiciary committee, had hoped his criticism of President Bush’s domestic wiretapping programme would be like the fight his colleague, John McCain, waged to prohibit the torture of detainees: a moment when the Re
A Senate panel approved a measure on Thursday that would change the Constitution to let Congress ban burning of the American flag, setting up an election-year debate over a perennial hot-button issue.
[Oh goodie, long lines for everybody.] The House approved criminal penalties and fines of up to $150 million for energy companies caught price gouging, yet lawmakers acknowledged there is no quick and easy fix to higher pump prices.
If Congress gets into funding local projects, there will be no end to it, and it might be "productive of evil." So warned President James Monroe in 1822. Since then, members of Congress have siphoned off billions in federal tax dollars for
Fiscal conservatives won a small but symbolically important victory Thursday in the Senate, killing funding for a seafood promotion program that had been tucked inside a bill for the Iraq war and further hurricane relief for the Gulf Coast. Led by
3 years ago on the eve of the invasion of Iraq, Sen. Roberts was involved in disclosing sensitive intelligence information that, according to 4 former senior intelligence officers, impaired efforts to capture Saddam Hussein and potentially threatened
Congressional watchdogs blasted an ethics reform bill pending in the House of Representatives as a "scam" that would do little to curb the influence of money in politics.
Democrats are set to introduce a measure that would create a "federal gas tax holiday" by eliminating the federal tax on gas and diesel for sixty days. [60 days? How generous with our labor. Remember, remember the 7th of November.]
Congress still doesn't get it. After more than a year of negative headlines about political corruption and money-soaked alliances with lobbyists, House leaders are weakening their already anemic excuse for reform.
Read the tail end (pun intended) and then her handwritten note to her constitutent. Priceless. see also: http://tinyurl.com/lwkz7
Remember Alaska's "bridge to nowhere"? It's about to be topped by what critics call Mississippi's "railroad to nowhere," which is quickly becoming the poster child for excessive spending by the Republican-controlled Co
The official police report on Rep. Cynthia McKinney's clash with a Capitol Hill police officer three weeks ago says the DeKalb County congresswoman struck the officer "in his chest with [a] closed fist." The "event report"
We've been jawing for weeks about the plans that Big Telecom have for discriminating between what's flowing through their pipes into our houses. A very dangerous bill working through the House took a big step toward being enacted into law, an
Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-WV), the senior Democrat on the House ethics committee said he won't step down from his post, contending there's no truth to allegations by a conservative group that he violated financial disclosure laws.