New poll numbers show Democrats could face trouble on the ballot in 2010, particularly among independents.
A new Gallup survey reveals that for the first time since the 2008 election that more voters say they would pick a Republican candidate over a Democratic candidate. Republicans took 48 percent of voters to 44 percent for Democrats. Independent voters went for the GOP by a 22-point margin. Read More
As the Senate prepares to vote on its version of health care legislation, one of the most contentious issues will be a provision requiring employers to provide insurance coverage.
With the jobless rate at 10.2 percent and expected to climb, penalties for employers who don't offer insurance benefits will make it difficult for moderate Senate Democrats to support the plan.
While most big companies provide workers with health insurance, many smaller employers do not, and they would end up having to come up with the money to either buy coverage or pay a penalty. Read More
Now that the House has passed major health-care legislation, the pressure is building on Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to pass a bill by President Obama's Christmas deadline.
Reid has an even harder task in front of him than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did. She barely pushed her bill over the threshold late Saturday night by a vote of 220 to 215, despite holding an 81-vote majority. Pelosi lost almost 15 percent of her members. If Reid loses one member of his 60-vote majority, his bill might be doomed. Read More
House Democratic leaders held last-minute negotiating sessions as they worked to round up enough support to pass a sweeping health care bill scheduled for a vote as early as Saturday.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said he believes there are very close to the 218 Democratic backers needed to pass the $1.05 trillion bill, which mandates health insurance coverage and creates a government-run insurance program. But several outstanding issues remain and the outcome was still uncertain. Read More
President Obama moved to put this week's election behind him with a deep pivot toward the upcoming House vote on health care reform, but fallout from the voting is likely to follow him to Capitol Hill.
The president made an unannounced stop in the White House briefing room to talk tough about the reform bill, touting endorsements by the American Medical Association and the American Association of Retired Persons. Read More
Delay is rarely good for politicians trying to pass legislation. The possibility that Congress might not complete action on a major U.S. health care bill this year is another frustration for President Obama and his allies.
Even if it does not sink the health care effort, a delay would raise new uncertainties and push other domestic priorities further back. It also would give opponents a chance to pick off anxious Democratic lawmakers eyeing their November 2010 re-election campaigns. Read More
Republicans increased their majority in the Virginia House of Delegates in Tuesday's election by picking up at least five seats -- stanching a recent Democratic tide in the state's lower chamber.
The GOP also made inroads into a handful of seats representing the Washington suburbs, including the 34th District, comprised of part of Fairfax County. Republican Barbara Comstock defeated Democratic incumbent Margi Vanderhye in the race for that seat by the razor-thin margin of 50.6 percent to 49.2 percent. Read More
RICHMOND - Tuesday's election marks a dramatic power shift in Richmond, pitting an emboldened Republican House majority and governor against a Democratic Party whose hold on the Virginia Senate will be continually under siege over the next few years.
The upper chamber is now the only entity preventing the Republicans from taking complete control of state policymaking, and Republican gains on Tuesday will put them on the offense in January -- when Bob McDonnell enters the governor's mansion and the General Assembly convenes with at least five new Republican delegates. Read More
This week's election results mean no letup for President Obama in the permanent campaign that has become the standard of his administration.
With the 2010 midterm elections looming and Republicans looking to build on statewide wins in Virginia and New Jersey, Democrats have a short window to cobble together a solid record to campaign on while they hope for an economic turnaround. Read More
As Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., pushes global warming legislation forward, some Democrats were showing a hint of frustration with their party's agenda.
"I just don't think climate change is going to be on the floor this year," Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., said. "Trying to restart our economic engine and trying to get this country back to work -- to me that is the most important issue."
Republicans boycotted Boxer's Environment and Public Works Committee hearings on the climate bill, authored by Boxer and Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. Read More