On Politics: Republicans in Congress Have a Shutdown Problem

Good Monday morning. Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today.


Just days before a deadline to avert a partial government shutdown, President Trump, Democratic leaders and the Republican-controlled Congress are at a stalemate over the border wall. But House Republican leaders have a problem: Their members don’t want to show up to vote. Read the story.

Could a federal judge in Texas be the catalyst that finally brings down the Affordable Care Act, a law that has withstood countless assaults from Republicans in Congress and two Supreme Court challenges? Legal scholars are doubtful. Read about what they think.

Mr. Trump said on Sunday that he would examine the case of a Special Forces soldier charged by the Army last week with murdering a suspected Afghan bomb maker nearly nine years ago. It was latest instance in which he has raised the possibility of intervening in a legal matter handled by the executive branch. Read the story.

Turkey’s foreign minister said that Mr. Trump told President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that the United States was “working on” extraditing Fethullah Gulen, the Muslim religious leader wanted on charges that he instigated a failed coup. Read the story.

North Korea warned on Sunday that if the United States continued to escalate its sanctions and human rights campaign against the North, it could permanently shatter any chance of denuclearizing the country. Read the story.

Mick Mulvaney, Mr. Trump’s pick to be acting White House chief of staff, described Mr. Trump in 2016 as a “terrible human being” who had said “disgusting and indefensible” things about women on the infamous “Access Hollywood” recording. Read more about his past criticism.

An early poll of Iowa Democratic voters shows them torn between familiar candidates in their 70s and one lightly experienced newcomer. Here’s who grabbed the top three spots.

With Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke departing at the end of the year, the agency will likely be run, at least for a time, by its deputy secretary: David Bernhardt, a former oil lobbyist who has played a central role in rolling back conservation measures and opening up public lands to drilling and mining. Read more about him.

Tenants in Trump family buildings had no idea why their rents shot up. The reason? They were the collateral damage of a hidden tax scheme. Read the story.

For the past several months, journalists and legal experts have been trying to uncover one particular secret about the special counsel’s investigation: Is Robert S. Mueller III in a closed-door legal battle? If so, with whom? Here’s what we know.


Today’s On Politics briefing was compiled by Noah Weiland in Washington.

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