The Intercept: “No Labels offered to raise $200,000 for two of the so-called Unbreakable Nine — the House Democratic faction blocking the party’s agenda this week — if they would cancel an appearance last Saturday at a Napa Valley fundraiser hosted by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”
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A private jet thought to be carrying another U.S. congressional delegation has been denied permission to land at Kabul airport, CNN reports.
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) deleted a tweet last night comparing vaccine mandates to the Holocaust.
Reps. Seth Moulton (D-MA) and Peter Meijer (R-MI) defended their decision to travel to the Kabul airport this week and told the New York Times they had walked away with important insights.
“They said the trip had changed their minds about Mr. Biden’s Aug. 31 deadline for a full withdrawal, which they had previously urged the administration to extend. Given that there is little chance that all Americans and Afghan allies can be evacuated in the next two weeks, they said, a swift departure is the only way for the United States to ensure that the Taliban will cooperate in eventually getting those left behind to safety.”
“The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol demanded records on Wednesday related to at least 30 members of former President Donald Trump’s inner circle,” CNBC reports.
“The demand is part of a sweeping formal records request that encompasses archived communications from the Trump White House as well as seven other Executive Branch agencies.”
Axios: “The move shows how expansive the investigation will be.”
Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV) “spent thousands of campaign dollars on personal expenses, including numerous fast food meals and family excursions to West Virginia resorts, while failing to properly report more than $40,000 in expenditures,” Roll Call reports.
“It is unclear what the House Ethics Committee will do to discipline Mooney, if anything. Sanctions could range from no punishment to a recommendation that the full House vote for expulsion, the latter of which is unlikely.”
Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that there was an “opportunity cost” associated with Reps. Seth Moulton (D-MA) and Peter Meijer (R-MI) visiting Kabul as evacuation efforts continue in Afghanistan, Axios reports.
Said Pelosi: “It’s not just about them going to Afghanistan, but in going to the region, because there’s a call on our resources diplomatically, politically, militarily in the region as well, so this is deadly serious.”
“Pelosi also said that this trip — which required the approval of committee chairs — was not approved by the Democratic side.”
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Washington Examiner: “House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy faces pressure from hard-line conservative Republicans to whip votes against the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure plan.”
“It is not just the Freedom Caucus messaging against the bill. The Republican Study Committee distributed talking points against the infrastructure bill, calling it a ‘Trojan horse for the radical Pelosi/Biden agenda.’”
“Centrist Republican support for the infrastructure proposal complicates McCarthy’s position. He does not want to endanger members who will face tough elections to win competitive seats.”
Wall Street Journal: “Tuesday’s agreement stacks up many legislative deadlines in late September. In addition to the budget package and a House infrastructure vote by Sept. 27, lawmakers will have to contend with the expiration of the government’s current funding by the end of September by passing new spending bills or an extension of current funding to avoid a partial government shutdown—either of which would require bipartisan support.”
“Congress also has to tackle how to raise the federal borrowing limit, or debt ceiling, before the government runs out of money to pay its bills some time over the coming months. The debt limit was reinstated on Aug. 1 after a previous deal to suspend it expired.”
Punchbowl News: “As we’ve pointed out repeatedly, the number of high-profile political and policy issues that hit in September is stunning.”
“Two members of Congress made an unauthorized whirlwind trip to Kabul early Tuesday, leaving less than 24 hours later on a flight used for evacuating U.S. citizens, allies and vulnerable Afghans,” the Washington Post reports.
“The visit by Reps. Seth Moulton (D-MA) and Peter Meijer (R-MI) — which was not approved as part of the normal process for congressional fact-finding trips — served as a distraction for military and civilian staffers attempting to carry out frenzied rescue effort.”
“It is not clear how the lawmakers, both of whom served in Iraq before being elected to Congress, first entered Afghanistan.”
As soon as the budget reconciliation resolution passed the House of Representatives, the Congressional Progressive Caucus issued a statement: “We will only vote for the infrastructure bill after passing the reconciliation bill.”
Speaker Nancy Pelosi promised moderate Democrats the vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill will take place by September 27.
Punchbowl News: “When asked about the new end-of-September deadline, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she views the two pieces of legislation as being tied together, and indicated her vote on infrastructure is contingent on a reconciliation package being ready for a vote.”
“After hours of infighting, House Democrats on Tuesday struck a deal that would approve their $3.5 trillion budget resolution, set up floor action on the bipartisan infrastructure bill by Sept. 27 and advance voting rights legislation,” Axios reports.
“The agreement allows all sides to say they got something, though none can claim a total win.”
The Washington Post notes the resolution passed 220 to 212.
Politico: “Democratic leaders are finalizing a deal that would clear the way for passage of the $3.5 trillion budget framework and set a House vote on the bipartisan infrastructure deal for Sept. 27, an offer they hope ends a weeks-long standoff with moderates.”
“After several hours of furious negotiating Monday night, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her team are finishing the compromise, which they hope to put on the floor as soon as Tuesday afternoon.”
Said Pelosi, in a private caucus meeting: “I’m sorry that we couldn’t land the plane last night, and that you all had to wait. But that’s just part of the legislative progress. I think we’re close to landing the plane.’
Politico: “Pelosi and fellow leaders are expected to resume negotiations Tuesday morning, with the Democratic caucus set to meet privately at 9 a.m. The House Rules Committee, which tees up the budget vote, is likely to meet shortly after.”
Punchbowl News: “But the mods are in the process of folding. The moderate group began the day negotiating for a vote on infrastructure before the budget resolution. They ended the day seeking a date certain for a vote on the infrastructure bill, a significant departure from their previous position, yet predictable for this clutch of lawmakers.”
“The leadership is now somewhat confident that they will be able to go to the floor early this afternoon with the rule, the budget and, embedded somewhere within, the promise that the House will vote on the infrastructure bill by sometime in September.”
Playbook: “Pelosi and Gottheimer spent hours trying to hammer out a deal that would essentially fold the budget vote into the roll call vote on the rule — basically, it would deem the budget as passed without having to hold a separate vote. In return for their support, moderates were offered the guarantee of a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill by a deadline of Oct. 1.”
“Yes, that would fall short of the BIF vote the Mod Squad demanded to have upfront before supporting the budget. But it would be a concession from Democratic leaders, who have sought to tie the BIF to the party’s larger $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill.”
“Talks broke down as negotiations stretched late into Monday night and members grew tired and grumpy.”
“Right now, there is no deal. And while it appears that some moderates are open to this possible accord, others want to hold the line for better terms.”
Roll Call: “These talks could’ve happened earlier, but leadership clearly thought they’d get moderates to fold to their pressure campaign. But the moderates held firm and have a lot of leverage now.”
A Virginia judge has dismissed the second of two lawsuits Rep. Devin Nunes filed against a Republican political strategist who he claimed spread defamatory information about him leading up to his 2018 reelection campaign, the Fresno Bee reports.
Nunes claimed Liz Mair defamed his character by making crude comments on Twitter using fictional alter egos—a cow and Nunes’ own mother.
Said Mair: “It is ridiculous that we have had a sitting United States congressman suing a fake farmyard animal, let alone me, for being mean to him on Twitter.”
“The House Select Committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot is poised to send notices to various telecommunications companies requesting that they preserve the phone records of several people, including members of Congress,” CNN reports.