DC Wrap

This is the third sample of a weekly DC Wrap product from WisPolitics.com. Let us know your feedback: [email protected]

This week’s news

— U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy says GOP skeptics of the House health care bill will turn around once President Trump starts weighing in heavily.

The Wausau Republican said those members will eventually “move towards where Mr. Trump is.”

“Trump can come at you with a hammer or a tweet that can be pretty powerful with your own constituents,” Duffy told CNBC.

No bill is perfect, he said, but opposing the proposal means keeping Obamacare in place despite wide agreement that it’s in a “death spiral.”

Duffy’s joined House Speaker Paul Ryan in pushing the American Health Care Act, but other GOP members in the state’s congressional delegation have been noncommittal.

Dems, meanwhile, say the Republican plan would raise costs and lead to a loss of health care coverage.

See our overview of the state congressional delegation’s reaction: https://www.wispolitics.com/2017/wis-congressional-republicans-not-fully-on-board-with-health-care-bill/

— U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin stressed the need to support American manufacturing and “have our infrastructure built with American dollars” as she touted her support for a “Buy America” commitment Wednesday.

“We need to do more to move our manufacturing economy forward at a stronger pace and that means making a strong buy America commitment,” she told reporters in a telephone news conference.

“I have a strong commitment to buy America policies and one of the things I was heartened by in the last few months was Donald Trump’s commitment to buy America and hire America, but as we’re seeing in instance after instance, there’s no follow through,” she said.

Lawmakers, including Baldwin and fellow Dem U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, have slammed Trump for seeming to break his promise that only steel from American steelmakers could be used on Keystone XL Pipeline, as well as other U.S. oil pipelines.

Pocan in a news release last week blasted Trump for going back on his word about the pipeline project, which Pocan said “will not abide” by Trump’s “own Buy American plan.”

“If President Trump is concerned with livelihood of American workers, he should take steps to ensure the Buy America Act is strongly and meaningfully enforced,” he wrote. “Unfortunately, the President’s talk about ‘Buy America’ is proving to be just another broken promise to the American people.”

— Republicans and Dems alike took to Twitter to celebrate International Women’s Day Wednesday.

— U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson is denouncing bomb threats to Jewish community centers across the country.

He specifically mentioned Whitefish Bay’s Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center, which was subject to another bomb threat Tuesday — the third in six weeks, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Johnson said in a news release said the threats “are an affront to our free society,” and that “no American should endure a threat because of his or her religious beliefs.”

Also this week, all 100 U.S. senators wrote a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly and FBI Director James Comey, requesting that help be offered to Jewish community centers and other Jewish institutions to counter the threats.

— Johnson introduced a bill this week to reauthorize the agency that helps whistleblowers in the federal government.

The bill, which he introduced with GOP Sen. Chuck Grassley and Dem Sen. Claire McCaskill, would reauthorize the Office of Special Counsel through 2022. The three are also looking to expand the Whistleblower Protection Act to include those who refuse to obey an order that violates a rule or regulation.

Johnson said the bills will “empower whistleblowers,” including those at Veterans Affairs “who blow the whistle on corruption and life-threatening practices that endanger veterans.”

The Senate this week passed a Johnson resolution to roll back an Obama executive order adding certain requirements to federal government procurement. Johnson said the action will “reduce the regulatory burden plaguing our economy.”

— U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Green Bay, wants to add an amendment to the Constitution setting term limits for members of Congress.

The bill from Gallagher, a freshman, would limit House members to six terms and senators to two terms. It offers exemptions for those who took office for only part of the term. Gallagher said in a news release it’s one of the measures he’s introducing within his first 100 days to “clean up Congress.”

Editor’s note: This item has been updated to clarify the bill doesn’t offer exemptions for current members.

— U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Menomonee Falls, wants to add the Ice Age Trail to the National Parks Service so it can get more funding.

The trail spans much of Wisconsin but doesn’t get equal funding from the agency, Sensenbrenner said in a news release. Co-sponsors include U.S. Reps. Glenn Grothman, R-Glenbeulah, Ron Kind, D-La Crosse, and Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee.

Posts of the week

Fun Fact of the Day: This week in 1872 Yellowstone National Park was established. Some of my favorite memories are the…

Posted by Rep. Ron Kind on Thursday, March 2, 2017



‘UpFront’: Johnson says Sessions right to recuse himself from Russia investigation

Trump’s revised travel ban draws fire from Wisconsin Dems

Pence: Trump ‘best friend Wisconsin businesses will ever have’

House corporate tax shift leaves some Wisconsin Republicans, businesses uncertain

U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner faces opposition at town hall gathering

Kind takes Trump to task

Congressman Sensenbrenner wants to make it harder for police to seize property

Rep. Gwen Moore meets friendly Glendale town hall crowd

Tammy Baldwin: Republicans are ‘organizing to take people’s health care away’

Did Russian officials go in back door of Trump Tower to meet Donald Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner? (Pocan)


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