Senate Democrats plan to focus on healthcare failures during August

McConnell Cancels Most of Senate’s August Recess 

When President Donald Trump declared that the US would be enacting steep tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum to the United States, he said that he was doing so on national security grounds. It's something Corker acknowledged to reporters when he noted that "doing anything up here is like pushing a major boulder uphill". "The next steps to rebuilding our military and reforming the Pentagon, the next steps towards strengthening our country's national security".

Democrats immediately cried foul over the move, arguing it was a clear political play by McConnell.

Last year, the Senate failed to come to an agreement by the funding deadline, so it spent months passing short-term spending bills and went through two government shutdowns before it finally passed a behemoth package known as an omnibus. Bob Corker plans to unveil legislation this week to limit when President Trump, or any future president, could invoke national security as a reason for taxing foreign imports.

And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell indicated he doesn't want to bind the president, even as he has concerns about the impact of tariffs on his home state of Kentucky.

"I've been talked down to on the floor of the United States Congress, so this is not something new to me", said Hochul.

Asked if those powers of persuasion were effective, Cornyn cracked a grin.

Corker pitched the proposal to his fellow Republicans during their weekly policy luncheon on Tuesday.

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Corker and other Republicans are pushing back on Trump's decision late last month to impose steep steel and aluminum on US allies, a move that analysts said pushed the United States closer to a trade war.

McConnell cites a "judicial crisis" of empty seats that still need to be filled - ignoring the fact that the reason so many seats remain open is because the Senate GOP refused to confirm President Barack Obama's nominations. European Commission Vice-President Maros Sefcovic said Wednesday that formalities in finalizing the list should be completed this month and that "the new duties start applying from July".

The idea being pursued by Corker, Sen. He said he also wants to take action on an immigration overhaul and legislation to revise policies that separate children from their families, but taking direct action is out of his hands.

It's shaping up to be far from the typical summer slowdown, when legislating usually makes way for campaigning.

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.

Toomey, who was re-elected in 2016 and thus insulated from immediate voter blowback, engaged with the Trump administration on tariffs as early as March 8, calling them a mistake. Heidi Heitkamp, a North Dakota Democrat in a tough re-election fight in 2018, said she was "very interested" in the proposal. "Americans deserve representatives who put in the work necessary to accomplish what they were sent to Washington to get done", he said.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said he would push for votes on expanding access to Medicare, the health insurance program for the elderly; lowering drug costs and health insurance premiums; increasing tax credits for health insurance; and making sure people with pre-existing health conditions do not get priced out of insurance.

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