ON THE HILL WITH DOUG CHRISTIAN
CAPITOL HILL – We are on day 24 of a government shutdown. Talks between the White House and congressional leadership have repeatedly broken down.
The House approves back pay for Federal workers affected by the shutdown. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) say on Friday, “On the first day that some of our federal employees will miss their paycheck, Congress is saying and guaranteeing that workers will be paid not only for this shutdown, but God forbid if we have any future ones, that their pay will be guaranteed.”
The House continues to pass a series of partial funding bills to reopen distinct parts the Federal government that are not linked to a border wall. On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked two House-passed funding bills. Speaker Pelosi pledges to continue sending partial-funding bills to the Senate.
Tomorrow, the Senate Judiciary Committee holds confirmation hearings on William Barr to become Attorney General.
Looking forward, Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former attorney and “fixer” testifies before the House Oversight Committee on February 7th. President Trump made some comments on Sunday some interpreted as discouraging Cohen from testifying. Trump’s comments elicited this statement from three committee chairmen:
“The integrity of our process to serve as an independent check on the Executive Branch must be respected by everyone, including the President. Our nation’s laws prohibit efforts to discourage, intimidate, or otherwise pressure a witness not to provide testimony to Congress. The President should make no statement or take any action to obstruct Congress’ independent oversight and investigative efforts, including by seeking to discourage any witness from testifying in response to a duly authorized request from Congress.”
Doug Christian, Capitol Hill