McCarthy’s Tucker Carlson decision ‘despicable,’ says Schumer

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday said that Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) decision to share security footage from the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol exclusively with Fox News host Tucker Carlson was “despicable” and damaging to security.  

Asked whether he would share the security footage of the attack, some of which was aired publicly during former President Trump’s 2021 impeachment hearing and during the hearings of the House select Jan. 6 committee, he said it would need to be reviewed by experts.  

“Look, I think what McCarthy did was despicable, damaged our security,” Schumer said of his House Republican counterpart. “Certainly … when he listens to a small group of the MAGA right, he’s going to run into trouble himself.” 

“As for releasing it, security has to be the No. 1 concern,” he said.  

McCarthy decided last week to grant Carlson access to all of the Capitol’s security footage from Jan. 6, sparking widespread controversy given Carlson’s work on a 2021 documentary series that framed the attack on the Capitol as a “false flag” operation intended to turn public opinion against former President Trump and his supporters.  

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) on Tuesday dodged a question about whether he agreed with McCarthy’s decision to share sensitive footage with Carlson, who entertained Trump’s claims of a stolen election on his show while privately expressing extreme skepticism about them.  

“Going back to when Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi [D-Calif.] was Speaker, my main concern is the security of the Capitol,” the GOP leader said tersely.  

Asked if sharing the footage may compromise Capitol security, McConnell reiterated “security of the Capitol,” which he said “was obviously severely threatened on Jan. 6” was his top concern.  

Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-Ga.), the chair of the House Administration Subcommittee on Oversight, said Tuesday that footage from Jan. 6 would be subject to a security review before going to Fox News.  

“It’s basically controlled access to be able to view tapes. Can’t record, can’t take anything with you. Then they will request any particular clips that — that they may need, and then we’ll make sure that there’s nothing sensitive, nothing classified — you know, escape routes,” Loudermilk said in response to a question from The Hill. 

Emily Brooks contributed.  

GOP Rep. Collins blasts Buttigieg for Ohio response, says impeachment not off the table

FIRST ON FOX: A Georgia congressman blasted Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg for his response to the Ohio train derailment and toxic chemical spill, saying impeachment is not off the table.

Rep. Mike Collins, R-Ga., a freshman Republican who ascended to Congress in the 2022 midterm elections, weighed in on the Transportation Department’s response to the toxic chemical spill in East Palestine, Ohio.


Collins said, "They should have shown up immediately" and that "any time we have a problem, as far as small businesses are concerned, you get right to the scene and see exactly what's going on, so you can assess the problem" and "figure out what the solution is."

"Yeah, they sent people up there, but… this thing was a major catastrophe and something like that garners the head of the department showing up," Collins said.

"And, you know, he just was bent on not going," the congressman continued. "And there's reasons why he did that."

"That’s just another, in my opinion, another clear example of this agency and the fact that they have got their sights set on stuff other than trying to improve the infrastructure of this country," Collins said. "And that’s the woke culture that this guy is promoting."

Collins said that whether it’s a train derailment, "planes almost landing on top of each other," or "some person deleting a file that shuts down a whole industry, there's something else that is going on besides what you see," calling them "results of an administration that is pushing a woke culture."

The Georgia Republican also noted the CEO of the rail company at the center of the toxic chemical spill, Norfolk Southern, recently notified shareholders of the firm’s diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) push for "cultivating a safe, inclusive culture."

"They're more worried about appeasing an administration and gender pronouns than they are putting grease on wheel bearings," Collins said, adding air traffic controllers are leaving the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) "because of the culture."

Collins, whose family runs a three-decade-old trucking business, said Buttigieg was an "identity politics" pick for his position that only knows "how to push" the ideology. He also said the transportation secretary "knows nothing about the infrastructure and transportation problems in this country."

"If we identified the problem, that’s the problem," Collins said. "We’re more in tune with trying to fix culture problems and be woke than we are fixing transportation infrastructure problems."

"The solution is… you get rid of Pete Buttigieg and get somebody in there that knows what they’re doing and what they’re talking about," the Georgia Republican continued. "We spent over $1 trillion on the infrastructure bill and the rails aren’t safer, roads aren’t any better, and the airports and the runways aren’t any safer."

Collins said Americans are "already seeing" the dangers of woke culture taking root in government, noting that "congestion is crazy" and "not being addressed," and that a person "can’t get from point A to point B."


"We're barely addressing the potholes, the bridges that need to be replaced.… That's where we need to have our focus. They didn't even put in enough money in that infrastructure bill anyway to alleviate congestion, but you're going to see more of that due to the fact that they're more worried about who we call or what we call or making sure that we have the right diversity."

The Georgia Republican said he does not "think anything is off the table" when it comes to impeaching Buttigieg, should he not step down.

Collins also said that, if he were a person living in East Palestine, Ohio, he would think Buttigieg’s delay of travel to survey the rail disaster shows "he doesn’t even care" and that they are "not important enough."

"Pete Buttigieg needs to give you the real reason why he wasn’t there," Collins said. "But when something significant like that happens, a department head ought to be there. He ought to be right there, on the ground."

"In my private sector, we make our living out on the public roads," the congressman also said. "We don’t have an office building that we go to and we’re with the motoring public every day. And it’s important that we keep these roads safe."

"And in order to do that, you need competent people and a Department of Transportation head guiding that ship," Collins added. "And that's what you don't have."

Buttigieg traveled to East Palestine, Ohio, last week to view the derailment. Critics blasted Buttigieg for his choice of dress boots for surveying the toxic chemical spill.

A Transportation Department spokesperson pointed FOX News Digital to a tweet by Buttigieg when asked for comment.

"Beginning in the first hours when USDOT arrived on-site, and continuing for as long as it takes, our department is working alongside our administraiton partners to ensure that the residents in East Palestine are made whole and Norfolk Southern is held accountable," Buttigieg wrote.

Supreme Court Justice Jackson gets support from conservatives in first majority ruling

Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson issued her first majority opinion Tuesday since joining the U.S. Supreme Court.

Jackson wrote the opinion in the case of Delaware vs. Pennsylvania Et. Al — a case concerning a dispute between multiple states on escheatment of unclaimed money.


The court overruled objections from Delaware and greenlighted the continued authority of a Special Master in the proceedings consistent with the court opinion.

The eight other justices unanimously supported Parts I, II, III, and IV-A of the opinion. She was joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Brett Kavanaugh in her opinion regarding Part IV-B. Justices Neil Gorsuch, Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Amy Coney Barrett did not concur with Part IV-B.

Jackson wrote her first opinion in November 2022, a short dissenting opinion that supported Ohio death row inmate Davel Chinn's motion.


The justice's November dissenting opinion was at odds with the rest of the court, save fellow Justice Sotomayor.

Justices on the Supreme Court have attested to a good working environment between colleagues despite perceived ideological differences.

Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh offered praise for Jackson last month, telling an audience at the University of Notre Dame Law School that she has "hit the ground running."

Kavanaugh was present for a keynote Q&A session at the 2023 Notre Dame Law Review Federal Courts Symposium, where he addressed the perception that the Supreme Court is sharply divided on ideological grounds after a series of controversial decisions that went in favor of conservatives. 

"There are great relations among all nine justices both personally and professionally. We only get tough cases, and we disagree on some of those. I think that's more nuanced than it is sometimes portrayed," Kavanaugh said.

Fox News' Chris Pandolfo contributed to this report.

Trump’s polling strength causes heartburn for Senate GOP

A Fox News survey showing former President Trump leading Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by 15 points among Republican presidential primary voters is the latest cause for heartburn among Senate Republicans who don't think Trump can win a general election match-up against President Biden.  

Predictions by key Senate Republicans that Trump would fade as the 2024 election approached are being upended, putting pressure on party leaders in Washington to consider embracing the former president once again.  

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and other Republicans blamed the “chaos” surrounding Trump for the party’s disappointing performance in the 2022 midterm election. Some thought it would be the final straw to keep Trump off the presidential ticket next year.

And McConnell had privately told several Senate GOP colleagues that Trump’s political strength would fade the more time he spent outside the Oval Office, according to two Republican senators who spoke to The Hill.  

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told Senate GOP colleagues that former President Trump's political strength would fade the longer he was out of office. (Greg Nash)

Yet a Fox News poll of 1,006 registered voters nationwide found Trump leading DeSantis 43 percent to 28 percent among GOP primary voters in a hypothetical match-up.  

Republican strategists say the poll shows Trump is more resilient than many party insiders expected. And they warn that Republican senators and other party establishment figures who have ramped up their criticism of Trump since he lost the 2020 election would be wise to carefully reconsider his chances of winning the presidential nomination next year.     

“I think Trump’s position is stronger than I thought it was,” said Vin Weber, a GOP strategist and former member of the House GOP leadership.  

He cited reports Trump has put together a more professional campaign operation than what he had previously.  

“If those articles are true, then Trump is running a very different campaign than he ran in 2016 or 2020. A formidable campaign with a disciplined candidate and 15-point lead in the polls today is more important than just a 15-point lead in the polls,” he said.  

Weber said “whatever doubts people may have about Trump’s inevitability … that should not be confused with a presumption that he’s not going to win.”  

“I think the Republicans that proceed on the assumption that Donald Trump will not be our candidate are taking a huge risk,” he added.  

A recent Fox News poll has former President Trump leading Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis 43 to 28 percent in a hypothetical matchup. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Senate Republican Whip John Thune (S.D.), who has criticized Trump from time to time and faced the former president’s wrath as a result, acknowledged Monday Trump still has a good chance of winning the party’s presidential nomination.  

“I think it’s possible he could be the nominee but I also think there are other people who could be the nominee. It’s very early on. The field isn’t even close to being set,” he said. 

Asked if he is surprised by Trump’s political resilience, Thune responded, “he’s got a very loyal, hardcore base of support and the other candidates aren’t that well known yet.” 

Sen. John Cornyn (Texas), a member of the Senate GOP leadership team, said national polls don’t necessarily reflect how Trump will do in individual state contests — but the polling shows he could do well if GOP votes are split among many candidates.

“National polls don’t mean to much,” he said. “I just don’t think we know who’s going to be in contention. If there are a lot of people running, that probably will benefit President Trump.”  

Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.)

Sen. John Thune (Greg Nash)

One Republican senator who requested anonymity to discuss the GOP presidential primary pointed out that Trump has maintained a solid lead among white working-class conservative voters who don’t have college degrees.  

“DeSantis’s problem is this: Trump still has self-identified very conservative primary voters and working-class voters, folks who don’t have a four-year college degree. He has really substantial leads among those folks,” the senator said.  

“When you break down DeSantis’s support, it’s almost from self-identified moderates and then Never-Trumpers, which is fine but you’re not going to win a primary with that. So he’s got to make some inroads,” the senator added.  

The Fox poll found Trump beating DeSantis by double digits among white Republican voters without a college degree, primary voters earning less than $50,000, white rural voters and white evangelical voters.

DeSantis led Trump 37 percent to 30 percent among white GOP voters with college degrees and they were virtually tied among suburban GOP voters, according to the survey. 

NBC News reported Monday that DeSantis will skip the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland this week, a large annual gathering of conservative activists.  

“It’s clear that Trump is the front-runner and Republicans in Washington need to get used to that idea,” Brian Darling, a GOP strategist and former Senate aide, said. 

“The Fox News poll does indicate that Ron DeSantis is a very strong candidate but that’s it. None of the other candidates are showing the strength to challenge Trump,” he said. “Right now, the race is Donald Trump’s to lose. 

“If you’re [New Hampshire Gov.] Chris Sununu or [former Maryland Gov.] Larry Hogan or [former South Carolina Gov.] Nikki Haley, these polls are not good news for you,” he added. 

Darling said Trump's critics in the party establishment are feeling heartburn over the former president's popularity with GOP voters. 

"He is showing more strength as he gets more active which should give the congressional delegation of Never Trumpers some pause," he added. "He's always going to have that very strong base of support."

But Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), who was one of seven Senate Republicans to vote to convict Trump on an impeachment charge related to the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol, said he still doesn’t think the former president can win a general election.  

“The issue is, 'Can he win?' and I don’t think he can,” he said. “Under President Trump, we lost the House, we lost the presidency and then we lost the Senate.” 

Cassidy attributed Trump’s lead in the polls to name recognition but emphasized “ultimately it comes down to, ‘Can you win?’ and over six years we’ve learned no.” 

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.)

Sen. Bill Cassidy said he doesn't think former President Trump can win a general election. (Greg Nash)

Still, the Fox poll is the latest of a long string of national polls showing Trump with a comfortable lead over DeSantis, despite an unceasing flood of unflattering media reports about Trump’s legal problems and jabs from former members of his inner circle, such as former Vice President Mike Pence and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.  

Trump has a comfortable 13-point lead over DeSantis in the national polling average calculated by  

A Harvard Center for American Political Studies—Harris Poll survey of 1,838 registered voters last month showed Trump ahead of DeSantis by 23 points while a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed Trump with a 12-point lead over DeSantis in early February. 

Jim McLaughlin, Trump’s pollster, said polls are “consistent” in showing that Trump is the clear front-runner for the nomination.  

“President Trump’s unique selling point is he has the ability to say, ‘You know all these problems you have right now, whether it’s the economy, it’s inflation, it’s immigration, it’s war and peace? I solved all this stuff, we didn’t have those problems.’ Every day he looks better and better versus Joe Biden,” he said.  

McLaughlin said “one of the reasons DeSantis has the popularity that he has is because he’s viewed as Donald Trump,” pointing to the tough-guy approach DeSantis has taken with the media and other liberal causes as well as Trump’s pivotal endorsement of DeSantis in the 2018 Florida governor’s race.  

Explaining Trump’s greater popularity among Republican base voters including non-college educated White, evangelical and rural voters, McLaughlin said “it’s like why would want to go to Trump-lite, which is what they view DeSantis as, when I can get the real thing in Donald Trump.” 

“It’s the old Coke versus New Coke, people want their old Coke,” he added. “They look at Trump and said he did this stuff, he solved these problems.” 

Biden admin’s taxpayer-backed contracts to help illegal immigrants avoid deportation come under a microscope

Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley is probing hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer-backed Biden administration contracts with a left-wing nonprofit to help illegal immigrants avoid deportation.

Fox News Digital previously reported that the Vera Institute of Justice, a New York-based nonprofit that views immigration enforcement agencies as a "threat" to civil liberties, received hefty Health and Human Services (HHS)-backed contracts as part of efforts to keep illegal immigrants in the United States. 

Now, Grassley is seeking answers on the federal contracts with Vera, who he says has a history of not fully complying with legal and regulatory requirements regarding the expenditure of government funds. In a Feb. 16 letter to HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, Grassley raised concerns about the Vera contracts, particularly regarding oversight structures to prevent waste, fraud, and abuse.

"My concerns with respect to HHS' oversight of its contracts with third parties stems, in part, from HHS' FY 2022 Agency Financial Report," Grassley wrote. "In that report, the HHS Inspector General identified a range of problems with HHS oversight of contracts, including contracts for services with respect to unaccompanied alien children."


"The report included a finding that the ORR 'did not award or sufficiently manage a sole source contract in accordance with Federal requirements,'" Grassley wrote. "Given that Vera could receive almost a billion dollars of taxpayer funds under one contract alone, even a fraction of improper conduct can add up to large sums of money. A robust oversight structure needs to be in place to protect taxpayer dollars from waste, fraud and abuse."

Grassley elaborated on his concerns by referencing a Department of Justice inspector general report that found Vera did not comply with previous "essential award conditions."

"Vera did not comply with essential award conditions related to award expenditures including: personnel and fringe benefits, travel, supplies and other costs, consultants and contracts, and subawards," Grassley wrote. "Additionally, OIG found issues related to Vera's compliance with award special conditions, procurement practices, subrecipient monitoring, and financial reporting."

"The audit also found that Vera had $325,907 in expenditures 'that do not comply with legal, regulatory, or contractual requirements; are not supported by adequate documentation at the time of the audit; or are unnecessary or unreasonable,'" Grassley continued. "This example further demonstrates the need for transparency in how Vera and its subcontractors are using taxpayer funds and what HHS has done to employ robust oversight procedures and policies to ensure Vera is in full compliance with all applicable legal, regulatory, and contractual requirements."

Grassley posed a series of questions to Becerra, including on HHS oversight procedures, policies, and guidelines that are in place to ensure Vera is in full compliance with all applicable legal, regulatory, and contractual requirements.

HHS did not respond to a Fox News Digital request for comment by press time.


The Vera Institute of Justice and the Acacia Center for Justice, a nonprofit linked to Vera and another left-wing immigration group, have combined to rake in hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer-backed government contracts since President Biden took office.

According to records previously reviewed by Fox News Digital, a vast majority of the money is going towards efforts to keep illegal immigrants in the United States. 

Vera has collected around $350 million from government contracts for immigration services in the past two years. The Acacia Center for Justice has also pocketed tens of millions of dollars in recent federal contracts. The progressive groups landed the contracts amid the escalating border crisis.

Vera received a $171 million HHS-funded contract last March to help unaccompanied minors avoid deportation, the records show. The contract has since paid out around $180 million with supplemental agreements as of December. 

The arrangement lasts until March but can hit as high as $983 million if renewed until March 2027. If extended, it will be the most significant federal contract the group has received for immigration-related services.

Vera has also secured other large government contracts since early 2021, including a $168 million contract in March 2021 for the same purpose of helping unaccompanied minors avoid deportation. During this time, the group also obtained smaller contracts ranging from $4 million to $12 million from other federal departments.


Vera did not respond to a request for comment on Grassley's letter

Meanwhile, the Acacia Center for Justice, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit started from a partnership between Vera and Capital Area Immigrants' Rights, has received several "legal services" contracts from the Department of Justice last September that netted the group around $41 million in payments, records show.

The Acacia Center appears to have launched to expand Vera's work with illegal immigrants detained at the border. However, unlike Vera's government contracts for unaccompanied minors, the Acacia Center's contracts do not specify an age group for the legal services. 

Its partner organization, Capital Area Immigrants' Rights, also directs an adult defense program that provides information, support, and legal representation to illegal immigrants, according to its website. It also has a detained unaccompanied children's program that works with minors at the Office of Refugee Resettlement juvenile immigration detention centers in Maryland and Virginia.

The Acacia Center launched last year and received the contracts less than two months after getting a July 2022 determination letter from the Internal Revenue Service, which stated the group's effective date of tax exemption was Dec. 29, 2021, according to filings.

Jordan rips Dems for skipping Arizona border crisis hearing, blasts ‘reckless’ Biden policies

House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan on Thursday took aim at Democrats for failing to attend an in-person hearing on the border crisis in Yuma, Arizona, as Republicans heard from witnesses about the devastating impact the crisis has had on their communities.

"It's a shame that not one Democrat member of Congress would join us on this trip, despite having weeks of advance notice," Rep. Jordan, R-Ohio, said in Yuma. "It's disappointing, but it's not surprising."

Republicans held the hearing in the besieged community with local officials and the CEO of a local hospital that had spent millions on migrant care as part of the GOP pledge to hold hearings at the border.

But when the hearing was announced last week, Democrats dismissed the move as a "stunt" and said they had not been consulted.


"Instead of focusing on real solutions to a complicated problem, Judiciary Republicans will once again not hear from any federal government witnesses at their hearing, further cementing this hearing as a brazen act of political grandstanding," ranking member Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., said in a statement. "As a result, Democrats, who have been to the border regularly the last few years, will not attend next week’s performative hearing."

Jordan denied that, saying they had been given weeks of notice. He also rejected the claim that the hearing is a "stunt."

"I would argue it's not a stunt. My guess is our witnesses wouldn't call it a stunt. What we've learned today from them, what we've seen last night on the border," he said.

Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., told Fox News in Arizona that the decision not to attend was a "message of disrespect" to the American people.


The Republicans viewed the unfinished border wall, of which construction mostly stopped during the Biden administration, and visited the Yuma Regional Medical Center. Officials there said they have delivered over $26 million in uncompensated care to migrants in a 12-month period — enough to support the salary and benefits of 212 bedside nurses.

"It is an unsustainable model to have a hospital like ours bear the entire burden of paying for migrant health care. No business or service can survive ongoing large-scale expense without any offsetting revenue," Dr. Robert Trenschel said.

Other witnesses included Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot and Jonathan Lines, a county supervisor. Wilmot testified that Border Patrol apprehensions of illegal migrants in the area have gone up from 40 a day to over 1,000 a day in the space of two years, and that the county has had to shell out tens of thousands of dollars to lease Porta-Johns to stop migrants defecating in crops.

His county has spent $323,000 in FY 2022 on booking costs for illegal immigrants who have committed state crimes, including sexual exploitation of minors, narcotics charges, assaults, kidnapping, burglary and theft cases.

"Our southern border, against all public comfort statements out of Washington, D.C., is in the worst shape I have ever seen in my career," he said in written testimony. "When one looks at Public Safety, National Security, and Humanitarian, our southern border can only be described as the largest crime scene in the country."

The border saw over 1.7 million encounters in FY 2021 and more than 2.3 million in FY 2022. Numbers are on track to outpace those numbers in FY 2023, although the Biden administration has pointed to a sharp drop between December and January as proof that border measures announced at the beginning of the year — including a humanitarian parole program that allows 30,000 migrants in a month — are now working.


The Biden administration has blamed Republicans for failing to fund border security and for not going along with an immigration reform bill the administration introduced on Biden's first day in office. The president reiterated those calls for immigration reform, including a pathway for citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants, during his State of the Union address.

Jordan on Thursday dismissed the proposal as a "massive amnesty package" and put the blame for the crisis on "reckless" policies by President Biden.

"On day one, day one, January 20th, 2021, Joe Biden said, ‘We're not going to build a wall anymore. We're not going to keep the Remain in Mexico policy, and we're not going to deport any illegal migrants who come in for an immigration violation,'" he said.

Rep. Tom McClintock, R-Calif., repeated Republican accusations that Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has not been enforcing the laws on the books — something for which some Republicans, including Biggs, have cited as grounds for impeachment.

"If this administration refuses to enforce existing laws, why would anyone trust it to enforce future laws?" he asked. "But this won't stop us from trying. That's why we're here today. But I'm afraid that this is going to get worse until the American people demand that these policies be reversed."

"History is screaming this warning at us — countries that cannot or will not enforce their borders simply aren't around very long," McClintock said.

Fox News' Bill Melugin contributed to this report.

Kentucky Senate committee advances bill to expand address confidentiality program

A Kentucky Senate committee advanced a bill Thursday to expand an address confidentiality program intended to protect domestic violence victims from their abusers.

The measure builds on a limited, little-utilized program that shields victims' home addresses from voter rolls. The program would be broadened to mask their addresses on other publicly available government records if the bill becomes law.

The proposal heads to the full Senate next after clearing the Senate Veterans, Military Affairs and Public Protection Committee. It would still need House passage if it wins Senate backing.


Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams said Thursday that the greater protections are needed in a state plagued by one of the nation's highest rates of domestic violence. The Secretary of State's office would administer the expanded program.

"When a victim decides to leave and find a safe place, often her abuser is able to find her, sometimes by finding her new location through easily accessible and free public records," Adams said in promoting the bill. "We can and must do more to protect victims."

The bill also aims to expand the program's accessibility.


Currently, victims who obtain court-issued protective orders can have their addresses hidden when registering to vote. Many victims don't obtain those orders, Adams said. Under the bill, victims who sign a sworn statement would have their addresses shielded from the broader list of records.

"I think that we will broaden the pool of people who can access this program," said Republican Sen. Julie Raque Adams, the bill's lead sponsor,

The measure would bring Kentucky’s efforts in line with 38 other states that offer comprehensive programs for masking the home addresses of domestic abuse victims on public records. The Secretary of State's office runs Kentucky's address confidentiality program related to voter rolls.

The program, created a decade ago, has fewer than 50 people participating, Michael Adams said.

Oversight Committee probes ‘no-bid’ DHS contract to law firm to handle Mayorkas impeachment efforts

FIRST ON FOX: The House Oversight Committee is investigating a "no-bid" Department of Homeland Security contract of up to $3 million awarded to a private law firm to aid Homeland Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas with potential impeachment proceedings — with Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer warning that such contracts put taxpayer money at "severe risk of waste and abuse."

"The Biden Administration’s self-inflicted border crisis has cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars and the American people are demanding accountability. Not only have the Biden Administration’s policies exacerbated the border crisis, but it also appears the Administration is exploiting the situation to reward its political allies and cover up Secretary Mayorkas’ disastrous decisions," Rep. Comer, R-Ky., said in a statement to Fox News Digital.

Comer has written to Mayorkas calling for information about a potential $1.5 million contract with Debevoise & Plimpton on Jan. 26 that will disburse cash based on their work. Government records show that the award runs until early January 2025 and could reach up to $3 million.

In the letter, Comer says that the contract is a no-bid, sole source contract, meaning it was awarded directly rather than through a competitive bidding process. Such an award is allowed only if due to an "unusual or compelling urgency."


"DHS justified its decision not to use fair and open competition in procuring legal services by citing ‘unusual and compelling urgency,’" Comer wrote. "We are concerned the alleged "unusual and compelling urgency" justification is to avoid congressional scrutiny and oversight."

DHS tapped the New York-based law firm to "help ensure the department's vital mission is not interrupted by the unprecedented, unjustified and partisan impeachment efforts by some members of Congress, who have already taken steps to initiate proceedings," a DHS spokesperson told Fox News Digital earlier this month.

Republicans, including House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, have raised the possibility of impeaching the secretary over his handling of the ongoing crisis at the southern border. Multiple members have also introduced articles of impeachment against him.

"DHS will continue prioritizing its work to protect our country from terrorism, respond to natural disasters, and secure our borders while responding appropriately to the over 90 Congressional committees and subcommittees that have oversight of DHS," the spokesperson continued.

Fox News Digital reported earlier this month that the firm’s employees give overwhelmingly to Democratic causes, including President Biden's past candidacy. During the 2022 election cycle, individuals at the firm donated $289,000 of their nearly $310,000 in political contributions — or 95 percent — to liberal campaigns and committees, according to data compiled by OpenSecrets. David O'Neil, a Debevoise & Plimpton partner, will lead Mayorkas' defense team if needed, reported. O'Neil previously aided House Democrats in their impeachment efforts against former President Donald Trump.


Republicans on the committee have previously expressed concern about the Biden administration’s use of no-bid contracts. Last year, when in the minority, Comer wrote to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) about an $87 million contract with a company to house migrants crossing the border.

The contract was particularly controversial as the company had ties to a Biden transition adviser. A DHS Office of Inspector General reviewed the contract and found that ICE was not justified in using a no-bid contract and that much of the space was left unused as the contract required ICE to pay for up to 1,239 beds no matter how many were used. ICE disagreed with that report.

In the statement to Fox Digital on Wednesday, Comer said the use of no-bid contracts was becoming a pattern for DHS.

"DHS has a clear pattern of awarding sole source, no-bid contracts worth millions of dollars and this habit is putting taxpayer funds at severe risk of waste and abuse. DHS leadership has failed to adequately justify the department’s decision to bypass normal contract competition and seems to be prioritizing political expedience," he said. 

"As Chairman, I made it my mission to protect taxpayer dollars from waste, fraud, and abuse. Oversight Republicans fully expect DHS to provide the Committee all information related to these no-bid contracts."

The letter requests a copy of the contract, as well as documents and communications related to the contract and deliberations over the award of the contract — including legal analysis and any approval documents.

Democrat Jamie Raskin offers update on his cancer treatment

Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., has reached the halfway point on his cancer treatment, his office announced Wednesday.

Raskin offered the update and thanked supporters for sending various gifts in a Thursday video. Raskin announced in December that he had developed a large B-cell lymphoma, which he described as a "serious but curable form of cancer."

"I’m midway through my treatments here," Raskin said in the video, according to the Hill. "I’ve done three of six rounds of chemotherapy, and you guys have completely bolstered my courage and my confidence."

"I’ve got my own constitutional preamble bandana," Raskin continued. "I’ve got flag hats. I’ve got people’s own chemo hats that worked for them, from a place called Alex’s Lemonade Stand. I got some bandanas. So my cup runneth over. And of course, a bunch of people sent me my own true blue Democrat mask."


Raskin has continued working in Congress throughout his chemo program, often spotted wearing various bandanas due to hair loss.


Raskin is among the most prominent critics of former President Donald Trump in Congress, having served in his second impeachment trial and participating in the January 6 committee.

Raskin says he is halfway through his cancer treatment

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) is halfway through his treatment for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, which he was diagnosed with late last year, he said.

“I'm midway through my treatments here,” Raskin said in a video to supporters who signed a note to him through the Progressive Change Campaign Committee. “I've done three of six rounds of chemotherapy, and you guys have completely bolstered my courage and my confidence.”

Raskin announced his diagnosis in December, saying his illness was a “serious but curable form of cancer.”

“Prognosis for most people in my situation is excellent after four months of treatment,” Raskin said in the December statement.

Raskin has continued to work throughout his treatment, and has recently started to don a bandana due to the hair loss from his cancer treatment. Raskin thanked supporters for sending him new headwear.

“I've got my own constitutional preamble bandana,” Raskin said in the video. “I've got flag hats. I've got people's own chemo hats that worked for them, from a place called Alex's Lemonade Stand. I got some bandanas. So my cup runneth over. And of course, a bunch of people sent me my own true blue Democrat mask.”

Raskin has most recently been at the forefront as the lead impeachment manager in former President Trump’s second impeachment and for his role on the House committee that was investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection. 

“Thank you for everything you said about the Jan. 6 committee, thank you for everything you said about the impeachment trial,” Raskin finished. “Thank you for everything you said about us hanging tough for democracy and freedom against all the autocrats and all the theocrats and all the plutocrats of the world, from Putin and Moscow to Trump in Mar-a-Lago, all over the world.”