The first six months of the Trump administration have served up a reminder of the gap between opposing laws and proposing them, of attacking other people's plans and trying to enact your own, with all the resulting real-world impacts.
Before, the dividing lines were clear: Sen. Pat Toomey was one of the leading voices in favor of the GOP push to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, while the Philadelphia area's Democrats were steadfastly opposed. Now, Republicans are groping for a way forward, and Democrats may have to decide whether and how to cooperate on bipartisan fixes for a law that has sharply divided the parties for years.
The Republican health plan speeding toward a vote as early as this week would increase the number of uninsured people to that level by 2026, the Congressional Budget Office estimated Monday, delivering a projection that will weigh on the unfolding debate. The report from Congress' nonpartisan scorekeeper also estimated that the Senate plan to overhaul the Affordable Care Act would reduce the federal deficit by $321 billion over the next decade. The savings come largely from slashing expected Medicaid spending by $772 billion, though much of those savings would be consumed by tax cuts for the wealthy and insurers
Under oath, under bright lights and in a jam-packed hearing room brimming with cameras and anticipation, James Comey delivered an unusually blunt assessment of a sitting president. He said he worried that President Trump would lie about their interactions and may have trampled traditions meant to keep law enforcement free from political influence.
I cover national politics and policy from Washington D.C., with a focus on Pennsylvania and New Jersey lawmakers and issues.