By Marian Currinder

Senator John McCain

Catie Edmondson, “Replace Richard Russell’s Name With McCain’s? Senate Debates a Segregationist’s Legacy,” NYT:

“The push for a name change in Mr. McCain’s honor is only the latest in a wider, so far fruitless effort to rid the Capitol of the symbols of the nation’s Confederate and Jim Crow past.”

Nolan D. McCaskill and Elana Schor, “Amid resistance to renaming building for McCain, bipartisan Senate ‘gang’ to vet tribute,” Politico:

“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday that he’ll convene a bipartisan “gang” of senators to determine how to honor Sen. John McCain, leaving in limbo a bipartisan bid to rename the upper chamber’s Russell Office Building after the late Arizona Republican.”

John Bresnahan, “Senate void left by McCain’s death won’t be filled soon — if ever,” Politico:

“As senators went to the floor to pay tribute to the late Arizona Republican this week, there was an overwhelming sense that the Senate had lost a singular figure, the rare lawmaker able to bridge the gulf between the parties and make bipartisan deals.”

Emily Stewart and Dylan Scott, “Who could be appointed to replace John McCain in the Senate, and the process behind it, explained,” Vox:

“McCain was considered a less reliable Republican vote than many of his colleagues, and whoever replaces him is likely to be more solidly aligned with the rest of the GOP. Ducey is more or less a traditional Republican himself, and he will likely choose someone his party’s leaders would approve of.”

Dylan Scott, “The Senate after John McCain,” Vox:

“As the world takes stock of his life and legacy, McCain’s death also has dramatic consequences for the chamber he devoted three decades of his life to. In the near term, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey will appoint a replacement who will likely be a more conventional Republican, one less likely to buck their party’s leadership, which could make it easier to wrangle together the 51 Republican senators needed for tough votes.”

Perry Bacon, Jr., “What John McCain’s Death Means For The Senate,” FiveThirtyEight:

“A new occupant of McCain’s seat is good news for McConnell, Trump and Republicans who want the party to largely follow the edicts of those two GOP leaders. McCain was largely absent from public life while he was receiving treatment for brain cancer, and during that time, the Senate was split 50-49 in favor of the GOP. That meant one Republican defection could kill any bill.”

Katherine Tully-McManus, “Senate Death Gratuity Tradition Will Continue for Family of John McCain,” Roll Call:

“After Sen. John McCain is honored this week, his family will be remembered with a personal payment in a spending bill, the long-standing practice of providing a death gratuity for a departed member’s survivors. The only question is, which spending bill will it hitch a ride on? Congress traditionally offers a death gratuity to be paid to the family of any lawmaker who dies in office.”

Patrick Kelley, “Inhofe Armed Services Leadership to Depart Drastically From McCain’s,” Roll Call:

“While the boisterous McCain was a hard-charging critic of both the Pentagon and the commander in chief, the more subdued Inhofe is, in many ways, the opposite.”

Congress, Miscellaneous

Jennifer Shutt, “Appropriations Rush Before Midterms,” Roll Call:

“With the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 and midterm elections just around the corner, Republicans hope to pass nine spending bills to tout on the campaign trail. CQ senior budget reporter Paul M. Krawzak explains why that might be a heavy lift.”

Lindsey McPherson, “Here Are All the Republicans Jockeying for Committee Leadership Positions (So Far),” Roll Call:

“Roughly half of the House’s 21 committees will have new Republican leadership next year, creating several competitive races among colleagues looking to move up the ranks.”

Niels Lesniewski, “Senate Wraps Up for August, Breaking Logjam on Judges on Way Out of Town,” Roll Call:

“The Senate finished up work for the week, and the month, on Tuesday afternoon after confirming seven of President Donald Trump’s picks to be federal district judges.”

Emily Stewart, “Former Harry Reid staffer hits Schumer for deal fast-tracking judicial confirmations,” Vox:

“Adam Jentleson, former deputy chief of staff under Reid took a swipe at Schumer’s decision to fast-track judicial nominees in a deal with McConnell in a series of tweets on Tuesday. He also laid out how Democrats could slow down the confirmation process and potentially stop some nominees, though he acknowledged that all of the nominees could go through anyway.”

James Wallner, “Senate Republicans made a threat, and Democrats called their bluff yet again,” Washington Examiner:

“In short, Republicans backed down. They made a commitment and then failed to follow through when it appeared that their threat wasn’t going to work as intended. This episode is a good illustratation of why Republicans can’t make the Senate work despite having a majority of its members.”

James Fallows, “It Would Take Only a Single Senator,” The Atlantic:

“This means that just one Republican senator joining the Democrats and independents would give them 50 votes, against only 49 Republicans, until McCain’s successor is sworn in. And even after that, a total of two Republican senators would have it in their power to create a 51-vote majority and impose limits on an executive they know to be out of control.”

Wayne Law Review survey of articles on congressional oversight.

The Legislative Scholar Newsletter featuring many articles on legislative gridlock.


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Marian Currinder
Marian Currinder is a senior fellow with the R Street Institute’s Governance Project and editor of Marian previously served as senio...