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DC Daily: Battle to confirm Trump's Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch continues

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Posted at 7:12 AM, Apr 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-06 20:08:32-04

What's happening in the political world:

Trump mulls action against Syria

-- President Donald Trump said Thursday that "something" should be done about Syrian President Bashar Assad, following the reported chemical attack in Syria.

"He's there, and I guess he's running things so something should happen," President Trump said aboard Air Force One. He went on the say the attack, "shouldn't have happened, and it shouldn't be allowed to happen."

The comments come following Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's comments to reporters that he "sees no role" for Assad to remain in power.

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"Nuclear option" invoked in Gorsuch confirmation
-- After Senate Democrats cast enough votes to filibuster Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, Republicans in the Senate countered by voting to invoke the so-called "nuclear option."

The move will mean Senate rules will change to allow filibusters of Supreme Court nominees to be overcome with 51 votes instead of 60.

With Republicans controlling the Senate, Gorsuch's confirmation could be all but solidified in a Friday vote in the full Senate.

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House Intelligence Committee Chairman Nunes stepping aside from Russia probe
-- Rep. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, is temporarily stepping aside as his committee continues its investigation into possible links between President Trump and his administration and Russia.

The California Republican issued this statement regarding his move:

"I believe it is in the best interests of the House Intelligence Committee and the Congress for me to have Representative Mike Conaway, with assistance from Representatives Trey Gowdy and Tom Rooney, temporarily take charge of the Committee's Russia investigation while the House Ethics Committee looks into this matter.

I will continue to fulfill all my other responsibilities as Committee Chairman, and I am requesting to speak to the Ethics Committee at the earliest possible opportunity in order to expedite the dismissal of these false claims."

House Speaker Paul Ryan said he is behind Nunes' decision.

"In the meantime, it is clear that this process would be a distraction for the House Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russian interference in our election. Chairman Nunes has offered to step aside as the lead Republican on this probe, and I fully support this decision," Ryan said.

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McConnell's support of "nuclear option" draws ire of McCain
-- In what could be seen as a form of Republican senator-on-senator crime, Sen. John McCain called the person who believes the so-called "nuclear option" would be best for the Senate an "idiot."

That person would be Sen. Mitch McConnell, who thinks passing the nuclear option would be good for the Senate and the system, especially as the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch hangs in the balance.

McCain said, "Idiot, whoever says that is a stupid idiot, who has not been here and seen what I've been through and how we were able to avoid that on several occasions."

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Husband of Trump supporter deported to Mexico
-- A woman who voted for Donald Trump is now without her husband after he was deported to Mexico.

Helen Beristain voted for Trump despite being married to an undocumented immigrant. She initially thought the president would only deport those with criminal records.

However, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents detained her 44-year-old husband Roberto Beristain -- who has no criminal record -- and sent him back to Mexico.

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Financial Services Committee chair asks Trump to fire Cordray
-- Rep. Jeb Hensarling, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, has asked that President Trump fire Consumer Financial Protection Bureau head Richard Cordray.

"I believe the president is clearly justified in dismissing you and I call upon the president -- yet again -- to do just that, and to do it immediately," said Hensarling during a hearing on Capitol Hill Wednesday.

Republicans want Cordray, a former Ohio attorney general, to be ousted and replaced with someone who holds their own views.

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Bannon removed from National Security Council
-- Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump's chief strategist, was removed from his role with the National Security Council.

The decision, which one source with knowledge said was made by Trump himself, comes after the president in January authorized the reorganization of the National Security Council to include Bannon as a permanent member of the panel.

Bannon is the former campaign manager for Trump and the head of right-wing website Breitbart News.

The reorganization also downgraded Homeland Security adviser Thomas Bossert's role.

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CNN contributed to this report