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Sunday, Apr 23rd

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Congress returns to face daunting tasks: avoid a shutdown and an angry Trump

Congress returns to possible shut-downAfter two weeks away, the 535 members of Congress return to Washington this week facing a critical deadline: they have five days to keep the government from shutting down, on the 100-day milestone of Donald Trump’s presidency.

In a rare show of bipartisanship, Democrats and Republicans are united in their determination to keep the lights on. But it’s unclear how they will navigate the competing interests of their parties and the White House to find a solution that the three sides can support.

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Classified docs contradict Nunes surveillance claims, GOP and Dem sources say

NunesAfter a review of the same intelligence reports brought to light by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, both Republican and Democratic lawmakers and aides have so far found no evidence that Obama administration officials did anything unusual or illegal, multiple sources in both parties tell CNN.

Their private assessment contradicts President Donald Trump's allegations that former Obama national security adviser Susan Rice broke the law by requesting the "unmasking" of US individuals' identities. Trump had claimed the matter was a "massive story."

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Senate Confirms Neil Gorsuch To Supreme Court After Historic Blockade Of Obama’s Nominee

Senate Coonfirms Gorsuch to Supreme CourtThe Senate confirmed Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court on Friday, ending an ugly, weeks-long fight between Democrats who demanded a different nominee and Republicans who changed the rules to go around them entirely.

Gorsuch was confirmed, 54 to 45. Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) were the only Democrats who voted with Republicans to support President Donald Trump’s court pick. Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) missed the vote.

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Lawmakers slam Trump for bypassing Congress on Syria strike

Lawmakers slam Trump for bypassing CongressAmid measured support for the U.S. cruise missile attack on a Syrian air base, some vocal Republicans and Democrats are reprimanding the White House for launching the strike without first getting congressional approval.

The politically diverse group ranges from the libertarian-leaning Kentucky GOP Rep. Tom Massie to Sen. Tim Kaine, a Virginia Democrat and Hillary Clinton's running mate in 2016. They've told Trump the U.S. Constitution gives Congress sole power to declare war and said the president needs to convince them that they should.

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Republicans invoke 'nuclear option,' clearing way for Gorsuch confirmation

Nuclear option voted in Senate to ensure Gorsuch appt.Republicans voted Thursday to invoke the "nuclear option" to strip Democrats of their power to block Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch from being confirmed — a victory with far-reaching consequences that could forever change the way justices are approved and shatter the Senate's bipartisan traditions.

The dramatic action, approved by a party-line vote, cleared the way for the Republican majority to end the Democrats' filibuster of Gorsuch's nomination immediately afterward. Senators voted 55-45 to end debate and advance Gorsuch's nomination to a final up-or-down confirmation vote on Friday.

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Democrats Filibuster Donald Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee

House fillibusters GorsuchDemocrats on Thursday followed through with their threats to filibuster Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, setting the stage for Republicans to unilaterally change the rules to force through his confirmation.

Nearly all Democrats voted to block President Donald Trump’s court pick. They needed 41 to pull it off, and they had 44. Four Democrats sided with Republicans to end the filibuster: Sens. Michael Bennet (Colo.), Joe Donnelly (Ind.), Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) and Joe Manchin (W.Va.).

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House Intelligence Republicans Boycott Briefing From FBI’s Russian Double Agent

House Intel GOP boycott mtg. with FBI doubler agentA House Intelligence Committee Democrat tried to reach across the aisle to reboot the committee’s stalled Russia investigation. Republicans met his gesture with total silence.

Republicans boycotted a Wednesday briefing on Russian intelligence methods organized by Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell, who had hoped the committee’s members could gather in a bipartisan manner to hear non-controversial testimony from an expert.

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