What to watch in Tuesday’s primary races

The countdown to November 2014 takes another step on Tuesday with voters in four different states selecting candidates for the Congressional mid term elections, as lawmakers in Kansas, Michigan, Missouri and Washington State face primary contests.

It might seem odd to some, but August is actually the busiest month of …

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House approves revised GOP border bills

A day after Republicans almost went home for a summer break after a legislative meltdown over immigration, GOP lawmakers rallied around a revised plan to deal with a surge of kids across the southern border, approving a $734 million plan to bolster security and a separate measure to block the …

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GOP slugs it out on immigration

On Wednesday night I wrote how it “could be a messy final few hours in Congress on Thursday.”

I sure hit that one on the head.

Instead of focusing their attacks on Democrats and President Obama over immigration issues, Republicans in Congress spent a full day battling each other on …

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Rumbling to a Congressional break

It could be a messy final few hours in Congress on Thursday, as lawmakers get ready to take a five week summer break that lasts until after Labor Day, as final action is assured on a VA reform bill, but other major legislation remains in limbo as the smell of …

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Report: Workers got full pay and bonuses for little work

In a new report, internal investigators say more than $5 million in federal resources were wasted at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as a group of workers were allowed to draw full pay, benefits and bonuses while doing little actual work for several years.

“The volume of hours charged …

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VA reform deal price tag at $17 billion

Despite adding billions to the federal deficit, a bipartisan $17 billion plan to help reform the VA seems to be on its way to approval this week in the Congress, as key lawmakers vowed on Monday to push the bill through the House and Senate by the end of this …

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Congress stumbles toward a summer break

The focus in the Congress this week is on getting a few things done before the annual summer break for lawmakers, as after this Friday, the House and Senate won’t be in legislative session again until after Labor Day, what’s known in Washington, D.C. as the August Recess.

Usually, the …

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VA scandal touches a nerve

As a reporter, you can always tell when a story takes another step forward because listeners and readers begin getting in touch with you to either tell their stories or to offer up insights of their own. And that’s where we seem to have arrived with questions about the Department …

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Whistleblowers rap VA’s “culture of corruption”

In a hearing that stretched until almost 1 am, it was a familiar story line before the House Veterans Affairs Committee on Monday night – but from a different part of the VA – as another panel of whistleblowers detailed how they raised questions about troubles inside the agency, only …

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New charges of VA data manipulation

Internal investigators at the Department of Veterans Affairs have told Congress that some VA workers were “cooking the books” on benefit claims by veterans to make it look like the work was being done in a more timely fashion, much like earlier charges that VA schedulers were changing dates to …

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