Senate Democrats today on Capitol Hill refused to attend committee votes on two of President Trump's nominees. They did not boycott the hearing on Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to be the next Attorney General. Instead, they focused on Trump's dramatic firing yesterday of Acting Attorney General Sally Yates. At the hearing, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin emphasized that, "this is a constitutional moment for us to consider how the next attorney general will deal with the remaining three years and a 11 months of this president." Matt Ford, who covers law and the courts for The Atlantic, has more on Democrats' dramatic showdown.
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Science got off to a rocky start even before President Trump was sworn in. On the stump, he vowed to reduce the Environmental Protection Agency to "little tidbits." On inauguration day, web pages on climate change from the Obama White House disappeared, the National Parks Twitter account was reined in, and soon after, staff at the Interior, Agriculture, health and human services and the EPA were told to stop communicating directly with the public. And then there's Scott Pruitt, Trump's choice to head the EPA, who's been a friend to oil and gas and an opponent to the agency he wants to lead. All of this has scientists of all stripes fighting back with projects to preserve climate data at risk of vanishing, and are planning a march on Washington.
Andrew Revkin, ProPublica (@Revkin)
Mandy Joye, University of Georgia (@SeepExplorer)
William Yeatman, Competitive Enterprise Institute (@WillieYeatman)
Tracey Woodruff, University of California at San Francisco (@UCSF_PRHE)
President Trump is shaking up the National Security Council. Over the weekend he made the unusual move to give his political strategist, Steve Bannon, a seat on the NSC Principals Committee, while the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Director of National Intelligence lost their seats on the committee, although they're welcome to wander in.
Chief White House strategist Steve Bannon (C) sits with White House
National Security Adviser Michael Flynnat the White House, January 27, 2017
Photo by Carlos Barria/Reuters
These moves have veterans of national security concerned. That includes David Rothkopf, CEO and editor of Foreign Policy magazine, and author of two histories of the NSC, Running the World and last year's National Insecurity.