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Jamie Dupree’s Washington Insider
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Congress sends President Obama major medical innovation bill

  • 2:48 pm Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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Proving once again that lawmakers are capable of bipartisan agreement, the Senate voted 94-5 on Wednesday to send President Obama a $6.3 billion plan that authorizes new government work on medical innovation, extra efforts on mental health, and helps states battle opiod drug addiction problems across the U.S.

“The Senate just passed the most important bill of the year,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

“This will make a real difference for patients and families across the country, now and years into the future,” said Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA).

The plan would direct an extra $4.8 billion in medical research money to the National [More]

Stop gap budget would ease way for Trump’s pick for Defense Secretary

  • 3:00 am Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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As Congressional leaders unveiled plans for a stop gap spending plan that would let lawmakers punt most of their budget work into 2017, the deal includes language that would ease the way forward in Congress for President-Elect Trump’s choice for Defense Secretary, retired Marine General James Mattis.

At a campaign-style rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina on Tuesday evening, Mr. Trump officially announced his choice of Mattis, which was well received by a very supportive audience in the hall.

The President-Elect acknowledged to the crowd that Mattis will still need a special bill to be approved by Congress next year, which would waive [More]

Son of Trump’s pick for National Security Adviser booted from transition over conspiracy theory

  • 6:55 pm Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree

After actively tweeting his support of the “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory, Michael Flynn Jr., the son of President-Elect Donald Trump’s pick for National Security Adviser, is no longer working for the Trump Transition team, as CNN reported it was Mr. Trump who personally made that decision.

Hours after an armed man was arrested at a Washington, D.C. pizza parlor on Sunday, Flynn Jr. had gone on Twitter to push the idea that senior Clinton campaign officials were involved in a child sex ring centered on the Comet Ping Pong restaurant.

When I noted that tweet of Flynn Jr. that evening, he quickly replied [More]

US House refuses to move forward on impeachment of IRS chief

  • 5:47 pm Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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A last minute effort in Congress to push for an impeachment vote against the head of the Internal Revenue Service fell far short of the votes needed for victory, leaving more conservative Republicans fuming about the message and the lack of support to further investigate the Obama Administration’s Tea Party targeting scandal.

Republicans led by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) argued IRS Commissioner John Koskinen had deliberately refused to turn over documents to Congress, accusing him of actively impeding the Congressional investigation into the targeting of more conservative groups by the tax agency.

“Koskinen has gotten away with stonewalling Congress, obstructing justice, breaching [More]

President-Elect says he wants to scrap new Air Force One

  • 11:01 am Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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Just as the Congress is about to authorize $351 million for work on a new Air Force One, President-Elect Donald Trump threw a curve ball on those carefully laid plans, as he declared on Monday that a Boeing program to build a new plane for future presidents is too expensive, and should be canceled, labeling it “totally out of control.”

“Cancel order!” Trump tweeted.

Mr. Trump reinforced that later in the morning, as he told reporters gathered at Trump Tower that he thinks the cost is “ridiculous.”

“I think Boeing is doing a little bit of a number,” the President-Elect said. [More]

Congress ready to use Obamacare savings for medical innovation bill

  • 7:48 am Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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Even as Republicans try to figure out how best to repeal and replace the health law changes made by President Obama, lawmakers in Congress are on the verge of approving a bill that would funnel almost $4 billion dollars from the controversial health law into government programs for medical innovation.

Tucked away in the almost one thousand pages of the plan known as the “21st Century Cures Act” are two provisions that shift the contents of two pots of money funded through Obamacare, a move that has drawn some fire from outside health groups.

With the backing of many Democrats in the [More]

Trump heads to North Carolina for next stop on “Thank You” tour

  • 3:00 am Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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Starting a three state tour this week, President-Elect Donald Trump takes his “Thank You Tour” to North Carolina on Tuesday evening, ready to formally announce his choice for Defense Secretary, and more than ready again to take his message straight to supporters as he puts together his Cabinet for a Trump Administration.

“He’s really excited to be in North Carolina tomorrow,” Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway told reporters at Trump Tower on Monday.

It was obvious in stops last week in Indiana and Ohio that Mr. Trump clearly enjoyed being back on the road; it seemed to energize him and bring back [More]

White House laments “corrosive” impact of conspiracy theory stories

  • 3:04 pm Monday, December 5th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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A day after an armed man from North Carolina entered a Washington, D.C. pizza parlor, spurred on by a conspiracy theory stoked in the weeks before the November elections by the release of hacked emails from Wikileaks, the White House said fake stories circulated on the internet about the Hillary Clinton campaign had almost produced a terrible outcome.

“It’s deeply troubling that some of those false reports could lead to violence,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, as Earnest praised the work of D.C. police to deal with Edgar Maddison Welch, who was arrested without incident.

“I think there’s no denying [More]

After weeks of battling over votes, North Carolina Governor concedes defeat

  • 12:20 pm Monday, December 5th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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After weeks of legal drama involving vote recounts and charges of possibly illegal voting, Gov. Pat McCrory announced on Monday that he was giving up his bid to win re-election, paving the way for Democrat Roy Cooper to be the next Governor of North Carolina.

“I personally believe that the majority of our citizens have spoken,” McCroy said.

“Thank you for the honor to serve the great state of North Carolina,” the Governor said in a surprise video release.

Cooper’s lead had stabilized – even increased a little – after some contentious recount efforts, settling around a 10,000 vote advantage over the incumbent [More]

Trump chooses Ben Carson as housing secretary

  • 7:24 am Monday, December 5th, 2016 by Jamie Dupree
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The Cabinet of President-Elect Donald Trump continued to take shape on Monday, as former GOP rival Ben Carson was selected by Mr. Trump to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development starting next year.

“Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities,” the President-Elect said in a written statement issued early on Monday morning.

“We have talked at length about my urban renewal agenda and our message of economic revival, very much including our inner cities,” Mr. Trump added.

Carson said he was honored by the choice.

“I feel that I can make [More]

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