The Senate confirmed former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to serve as Energy secretary Thursday.
At his confirmation hearing, Perry vowed to be an advocate for an agency he once pledged to eliminate and promised to rely on federal scientists, including those who work on climate change.
Perry served 14 years at Texas governor. He said he was for "all of the above" on energy production, from oil and gas to renewable sources like wind and solar power, before former President Obama embraced the strategy.
A Kremlin spokesman said Thursday that any past meetings between Russia’s envoy to Washington, Sergey Kislyak, and U.S. Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions were “not our headache.”
The spokesman, Dmitri Peskov, told reporters in a conference call that he did not know if the two had been in contact during the U.S. presidential campaign, and that if contacts did occur, he did not know “what was their content.”
Sessions, then a U.S. senator, served as a foreign advisor to President Trump during the campaign. He is now at the center of an uproar over reports that he met twice with the Russian envoy and then lied under oath to congressional colleagues when he said he had not had contacts with any Russian official.
The U.S. military conducted airstrikes in the predawn hours against suspected Al Qaeda positions Thursday across three provinces in Yemen, marking the first American attacks since an ill-fated Navy SEAL raid in January.
Officials said the bombing runs against alleged Al Qaeda targets in Abyan, Bayda and Shabwa provinces were planned months before the rare on-the-ground Jan. 29 raid, in which Chief Petty Officer William "Ryan" Owens and two dozen civilians were killed.
More than 20 airstrikes took place over several hours beginning at 3 a.m. local time and were coordinated with President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi's fragile government, the Pentagon said.
President Trump sees himself as a masterful dealmaker, and he has begun signaling that he believes he can land perhaps the thorniest of transactions in Washington: immigration reform.
Trump sparked a flurry of speculation when he privately told television anchors over lunch this week that he could support a compromise that allowed people with no criminal record to stay in the country and work and pay taxes.
But immigration experts are skeptical Trump has the attention span or the desire to pass a sweeping immigration overhaul, a deeply complicated undertaking that has failed twice in Washington in the last decade and would represent an about-face from Trump’s hard-line campaign stance against illegal immigration and crackdown on migrants since he took office.
The Senate has confirmed retired neurosurgeon and former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson as secretary of Housing and Urban Development. The vote was 58-41.
Carson will lead an agency with about 8,300 employees and a budget of about $47 billion.
Carson has no government or housing policy experience. Despite that, his nomination cleared a Senate committee in January on a unanimous vote. Republicans praised his life story as inspiring. Carson grew up in inner-city Detroit with a single mother who had a third-grade education. Democrats welcomed Carson's promises to address homelessness, lead hazards in housing, and other issues.
The Trump administration Wednesday sent its strongest signal yet that it was prepared to buck the international trade order, including confronting the World Trade Organization, to assertively defend the economic interests and sovereignty of the United States.
In a mandated annual report to Congress outlining the president’s trade agenda, the administration repeated Trump’s warnings that the U.S. would take tough measures to combat dumping and other unfair practices by trading partners and ensure a level playing field.
The document, like Trump’s speech to Congress on Tuesday, was striking in its lack of specifics on what actions the president intended to take.
Growing numbers of lawmakers from both parties have called on Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions to step aside from the probe of Russian interference in the election after disclosures that, contrary to his sworn testimony, he met with the Russian ambassador twice during the campaign.
Top Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, said Sessions has perjured himself and must resign.
Republicans did not go that far, but several influential members of the party said Sessions should play no role in the investigation that is being conducted by the FBI and other law enforcement and intelligence agencies.