Debo’s Downfall

Feature: How an unlikely coalition worked together to block the Debo Adegbile nomination
Pennsylvania Sens. Pat Toomey and Mike Fitzpatrick hold a news conference with the Fraternal Order of Police / AP

Seven Senate Democrats joined 44 Republicans on March 5 to oppose the nomination of Debo Adegbile to head the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division—a vote President Barack Obama labeled a “travesty” and pundits denounced as “racist.” The bipartisan blockage arose from the unlikely coalition of a moderate Republican congressman, a popular African-American Democrat, a Tea Party senator, a powerful labor union, and a long-grieving widow.

Prognosis Negative for Background Check Bill

Senate to vote on nine gun bills
Sen. Dianne Feinstein speaks about gun legislation on Senate floor, April 17 / AP

The Senate will vote on expanding background checks for firearm sales Wednesday afternoon, but what was once considered Democrats’ most viable option for gun control legislation does not appear to have the necessary 60 votes to proceed.

Remove and Replace

Senate Republicans ready substitute gun bill
Sens. Manchin, Toomey / AP

Senate Republicans are preparing a substitute to the background check legislation crafted by Sens. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) and Joe Manchin (D., W.V.), the Washington Free Beacon has learned.