Jamie Dupree 

Jamie Dupree’s Washington Insider

FEMA faces third major disaster relief effort as Hurricane Maria takes aim at US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico

  • 5:30 pm Monday, September 18th, 2017 by Staff Writer

Still working on recovery and relief efforts in Texas after Hurricane Harvey and Florida after Hurricane Irma, federal officials were looking at the chance of even more damage in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, as rapidly intensifying Hurricane Maria seemed to be taking dead aim at an area in the Caribbean which just experienced major troubles from Irma earlier this month.

“Maria is likely to affect Puerto Rico as an extremely dangerous major hurricane,” the National Hurricane Center reported in its evening update about the progress of the storm, noting that “all indications are that rapid intensification is continuing.”

As [More]

Legal defense fund set up for ex-Trump aide Michael Flynn

  • 8:39 am Monday, September 18th, 2017 by Staff Writer

A former top aide to President Donald Trump is appealing for contributions to a new legal defense fund, as ex-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn confronts possibly serious legal troubles involved in the ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 elections, and ties to Mr. Trump’s campaign.

“We deeply appreciate the support of family and friends across this nation,” Flynn tweeted on Monday morning, announcing that his brother and sister had created a legal defense fund “to help pay my legal defense costs.”

Flynn, who was forced out of his post as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency under President Obama, was [More]

Republicans push one last-ditch effort to overhaul the Obama health law

  • 9:18 pm Sunday, September 17th, 2017 by Staff Writer

With the clock ticking down on a special expedited legislative procedure that avoids a Senate filibuster, Republicans are trying to rally support for a new plan that’s designed to make major changes in the Obama health law, in hopes of mustering 50 votes for the bill before the end of September.

“Doing nothing is not an option,” says Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), one of prime movers – with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) – behind a bill that was unveiled just last week, but has picked up support from most Republicans in the Senate.

“We are giving the power over health care to [More]

Little appetite for extra budget cuts as House passes 2018 spending bills

  • 6:42 am Sunday, September 17th, 2017 by Staff Writer

As the House finished work this past week on next year’s funding for the federal government, approving a package of eight different different spending bills, one thing noticeably absent from the debate on the House floor was a successful push to make new cuts in next year’s budget, as efforts to make deeper spending reductions were routinely rejected by a coalition of both parties.

It was the first time since 2009 that the House had approved all 12 funding bills before the start of new fiscal year – but none of those plans have yet to reach the Senate floor – [More]

A lot of talk, but still slow going for Trump agenda in Congress

  • 5:00 am Saturday, September 16th, 2017 by Staff Writer

Despite promises of action from the White House and top GOP lawmakers on Capitol Hill, major elements of President Donald Trump’s legislative agenda remain where they have been much of the year in Congress – not moving very fast – as GOP leaders promise to kick things into gear over the next few months in the House and Senate.

Here where things stand on major action items for both President Trump and Republican leaders in the Congress:

1. Republicans gear up for one more run on health care. Under the rules of the expedited process known as ‘budget reconcilation,’ Republicans have until [More]

White House pledges to publicly set out details on possible DACA deal with Congress

  • 2:52 pm Friday, September 15th, 2017 by Staff Writer

A day after President Donald Trump seemed to muddy the waters on a possible legislative deal with Democrats in Congress over the future of young illegal immigrant “Dreamers,” the White House on Friday promised that officials would clearly set out in the next seven to ten days what items Mr. Trump wants to see on immigration enforcement in any deal on the DACA program.

“The President supports the DACA program and supports making a deal on that, but again, that has to include that massive border security,” said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

On Thursday, the President said he was [More]

Congress not sure where President Trump goes next on DACA, immigration

  • 8:40 pm Thursday, September 14th, 2017 by Staff Writer

President Donald Trump on Thursday left members of both political parties unsure of his next move on immigration policy, as he repeatedly defended his latest talks with senior Democrats, but left open the question of whether a deal could be reached about the fate of illegal immigrant “Dreamers” in the United States, leaving some Republicans in Congress wary and unsettled about Mr. Trump’s plans.

“Typically, a President of our party would work with our party on a proposal that we would be supportive of,” said Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX), the Chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee.

Speaking to reporters off the [More]

Trump says he’s ‘fairly close’ to deal with Democrats on border security and immigrant ‘Dreamers’

  • 10:20 am Thursday, September 14th, 2017 by Staff Writer

Amid concern in conservative ranks, President Donald Trump said Thursday that he is nearing a deal with leaders in Congress to enact protections for certain younger illegal immigrants in the United States, in exchange for tougher border security measures, though such an agreement won’t include money for Mr. Trump’s wall along the Mexican border.

“The wall will come later,” the President said to reporters, as he left the White House to fly to Florida for a tour of damage from Hurricane Irma.

After a meeting last night with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, the President at [More]

Heading to Florida, Trump urges tax reform in wake of major hurricane strikes

  • 2:00 am Thursday, September 14th, 2017 by Staff Writer

Before going to Florida to see some of the damage from Hurricane Irma, President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that the case for Congress approving tax reform was even stronger now, as a way to generate new economic growth after two major hurricanes struck the United States in recent weeks, causing billions of dollars in losses.

“They were very big and very powerful,” Mr. Trump said of Hurricane Irma and Harvey, as he met with a bipartisan group of moderate House lawmakers, pressing the case for tax reform.

“Because of that, more than ever, we now need great tax reform and great [More]

On tax reform, President Trump says he’s open to higher taxes on the wealthy

  • 3:33 pm Wednesday, September 13th, 2017 by Staff Writer

As GOP leaders in Congress announced they would release an outline of Republican tax reform plans later this month, President Donald Trump on Wednesday said he would prefer a tax plan that leaves the tax burden on the wealthiest Americans unchanged, but didn’t rule out the chance of a tax increase on those who make the most money.

“I think the wealthy will be pretty much where they are,” Mr. Trump told reporters, making clear he wants the plan to leave the tax burden the same on top income earners, while leaving the door open to a possible tax increase on [More]