Susan Davis | Washington Week

Susan Davis

Susan Davis covers Congress for NPR News.  She previously reported on Congress for USA Today and National Journal.   Prior to that she was the lead writer for the popular political blog “Washington Wire” at The Wall Street Journal, where she was a member of WSJ’s political team.  As part of that team, Davis covered the 2008 presidential campaign, Congress and congressional campaigns.  Davis began her career at the National Journal Group as a research associate for the Alamanac of American Politics and later covered the U.S. House for Roll Call and also worked for CongressDaily, covering the House, Senate and campaign finance beats.

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Recent Stories

  • NPR
    September 6, 2016
    After a 7-week summer break, Congress returns to Capitol Hill. Lawmakers are scheduled to spend the month of September on a very short to-do list before leaving again ahead of November' election.
  • NPR
    September 3, 2016
    Lawmakers return to Washington on Tuesday for what GOP party leaders are hoping will be an uneventful September for their party's most vulnerable members.
  • NPR
    September 1, 2016
    A softer-edged Donald Trump huddled with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto in a hastily arranged meeting in Mexico City on Wednesday. Both men pledged a commitment to strengthening the U.S.-Mexico relationship.
  • NPR
    August 30, 2016
    Three big-name political insiders have been targets of the activist, outsider wings of their parties. And yet all three — Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Marco Rubio of Florida, as well as Democratic Rep.
  • NPR
    August 26, 2016
    At a recent campaign stop in Philadelphia, Senate Democratic candidate Katie McGinty faced a tough crowd: 4-year olds. "Hi!
  • NPR
    August 18, 2016
    Hillary Clinton's increasingly dominant lead in the presidential race is solidifying many Republicans' worst 2016 fears that Donald Trump will cost the party not only the White House but also control of the Senate.
  • NPR
    August 11, 2016
    Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump declined multiple opportunities to walk back his latest charge that President Obama founded the radical Islamic State terrorist organization.
  • NPR
    August 2, 2016
    Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine clarified Sunday that his position on abortion rights is unmoved, despite top Clinton campaign aides' recent assertions otherwise.
  • NPR
    July 23, 2016
    While many pundits and political observers were quick to praise Hillary Clinton's pick of Tim Kaine as her running mate on Friday, the choice wasn't met with universal acclaim.
  • NPR
    June 23, 2016
    Democrats had been trying to force a vote on gun control measures.
  • NPR
    May 21, 2016
    President Obama heads to Japan and Vietnam, two nations waiting for the U.S. to act on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the long-stalled multilateral trade pact.
  • NPR
    May 13, 2016
    House Speaker Paul Ryan met with the de facto nominee of the Republican Party Donald Trump Thursday and called the conversation encouraging and a good first step, while acknowledging that the two have legitimate policy differences.
  • NPR
    May 12, 2016
    Donald Trump arrived in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to meet with his party's congressional leaders to hash out their differences and talk GOP unity ahead of what is likely to be a pitched general-election battle against Hillary Clinton.
  • NPR
    April 22, 2016
    The Republican National Committee delegates and the three presidential campaigns jockeying for their votes huddled here in Hollywood, Fla., for its last formal party meeting ahead of the July convention in Cleveland.
  • NPR
    April 13, 2016
    If Republican Party delegates are looking for an alternative to Donald Trump, Ted Cruz or John Kasich, it won't be Paul Ryan.
  • NPR
    April 4, 2016
    Like so many Americans approaching retirement, Virginia Republican Rep. Scott Rigell dreams about spending a little more time on the water.
  • NPR
    March 24, 2016
    In an address on Capitol Hill today, House Speaker Paul Ryan criticized the state of American politics. His remarks were seen as a rebuke of GOP president frontrunner Donald Trump, although Ryan did not call him out by name.
  • NPR
    February 26, 2016
    Following his win in Nevada, Donald Trump is looking more and more like he could be the GOP nominee in November. The Republican leadership in Congress is beginning to come to terms with what that might mean for the party.
  • NPR
    February 25, 2016
    Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., became the first member of Congress to publicly endorse Donald Trump for president. In a statement, Collins said the business tycoon has the "guts and the fortitude" for the Oval Office.
  • NPR
    February 24, 2016
    Senators held a closed door meeting on Tuesday to strategize on the upcoming fight over whether to hold a hearing on President Obama's nominee to succeed Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
  • NPR
    February 17, 2016
    The White House isn't offering any names of potential nominees to succeed Justice Antonin Scalia, but it is offering a few clues.
  • NPR
    February 16, 2016
    The Supreme Court vacancy created by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia has the potential to upend the 2016 election.
  • NPR
    February 8, 2016
    Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders hold substantial leads in their parties' polling. On the Republican side, the positioning of second and third-place candidates could be significant as well.
  • NPR
    January 14, 2016
    On the NPR Politics Podcast, the team dissects President Obama's final State of the Union address. Was the president responding directly to some of the rhetoric on the campaign trail?
  • NPR
    January 13, 2016
    Tuesday's State of the Union address was the first with Paul Ryan as House Speaker. NPR explores whether President Obama and Speaker Ryan will be able to cooperate this year.
  • NPR
    January 7, 2016
    Ted Cruz and Donald Trump are in a battle for first place. There's a struggle between Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio to place third — which would give them momentum going in to the New Hampshire primary.
  • NPR
    December 28, 2015
    Republicans had something to prove when they took over both houses of Congress at the beginning of 2015 -- that they could govern. So, did they prove it?
  • NPR
    December 24, 2015
    On the last day of the congressional session, House Speaker Paul Ryan reflected on his first seven weeks on the job, his leadership style and what his past experiences have taught him about being a leader.
  • NPR
    December 16, 2015
    House Speaker Paul Ryan announced late Tuesday that negotiators had reached a deal on two sweeping pieces of legislation: a $1 trillion spending bill and more than $600 billion bundle in tax breaks.
  • NPR
    December 11, 2015
    First Lady Michelle Obama collaborated with College Humor and Saturday Night Live cast member Jay Pharoah on a rap video encouraging high school seniors to go to college. It's part of Obama's "Better Make Room" initiative.
  • NPR
    December 8, 2015
    In his address to the nation on Sunday, President Obama asked Congress to authorize the use of military force against the Islamic State. The ongoing U.S.
  • NPR
    November 20, 2015
    The House passed legislation Thursday to pause the refugee resettlement program. The legislation includes new requirements for the government agencies that are screening Syrian and Iraqi refugees.
  • NPR
    November 18, 2015
    In response to last week's terrorist attacks in Paris, House Republicans have formed a task force charged with finding a legislative response to calm fears about Syrian refugees coming into the U.S.
  • NPR
    October 29, 2015
    Rep. John Boehner of Ohio is expected to hand off the speaker's gavel in the House chamber to Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin on Thursday. NPR's Susan Davis tells Renee Montagne about his exit interview.
  • NPR
    October 27, 2015
    The White House and congressional leaders are close to reaching a two-year budget deal that would set new, higher spending caps and increase the nation's borrowing authority.
  • NPR
    October 21, 2015
    House speaker may be the most undesirable job in Washington for Rep. Paul Ryan, but a growing number of backbench Republicans are indicating they would be happy to hold the gavel if Ryan refuses to run.
  • NPR
    October 6, 2015
    Hard line Republicans in Congress lost the battle to restrict federal funding for Planned Parenthood and the government averted a shutdown last week.
  • NPR
    October 2, 2015
    He has formally announced his candidacy for the House speakership. He'll need to get the nod from hardline and moderate members of the Republican caucus and he'll have pressing business to attend to.
  • NPR
    September 22, 2015
    A conservative Catholic lawmaker announced he will boycott Pope Francis' historic address before Congress Thursday because of the pope's views on climate change.
  • USA Today
    August 5, 2015
    The White House received encouraging signs Tuesday that Senate Democrats are slowly lining up in support of President Obama’s Iran nuclear deal, while Republican leaders formally announced their plans to pursue legislation to defeat it.
  • USA Today
    July 31, 2015
    The top House Democrat said Thursday that President Obama will have the support he needs to uphold the Iran nuclear deal if Republicans try to block it.
  • USA Today
    July 29, 2015
    A conservative lawmaker launched a provocative but unlikely effort late Tuesday to oust House Speaker John Boehner from his job. Rep.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2015
    Senators grilled top administration officials Thursday in the first hearing to vet the Iran nuclear deal struck by the U.S., Iran and five other nations that has also received unanimous support from the United Nations Security Council.
  • USA Today
    July 22, 2015
    A trio of top administration officials are making the rounds on Capitol Hill this week to assuage bipartisan concerns and shore up support for the pending Iran nuclear deal.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2015
    Congress continues to show small measures of progress in how the institution is being run, according to a quarterly report that tracks various metrics to evaluate the "health" of the legislative branch.
  • USA Today
    July 10, 2015
    House GOP leaders were forced Thursday to pull a spending bill from the floor after an amendment regarding the display of the Confederate flag sparked a swift and angry backlash from Democrats.
  • USA Today
    July 6, 2015
    Congress returns Tuesday for a four-week legislative sprint to confront a number of domestic and foreign policy matters before lawmakers adjourn for the annual August break.
  • USA Today
    July 2, 2015
    The charter for the Export-Import Bank of the United States expires at midnight Tuesday, delivering at least a short-term victory for fiscal conservatives and activists who targeted the 81-year-old institution as a free market distortion.
  • USA Today
    June 24, 2015
    President Obama's embattled trade agenda received new life Tuesday as the U.S. Senate advanced a key part of a legislative package in a necessary procedural vote.
  • USA Today
    June 22, 2015
    In the reporters’ roundtable on Capitol Download, The Washington Post's Ed O’Keefe and USA Today's Susan Davis discuss Donald Trump’s and Jeb Bush’s announcements. They also discuss the revival of Trade Adjustment Assistance.
  • USA Today
    June 12, 2015
    Trade supporters scored a critical victory on Thursday, when the U.S. House narrowly voted, 217-212, to begin debate on a trio of trade bills now set to receive votes Friday.
  • USA Today
    June 10, 2015
    There is growing agreement among senators that women should have over-the-counter access to birth control pills, but that is where the consensus stops and familiar political battle lines over women's health care emerge.
  • USA Today
    June 8, 2015
    President Obama's trade agenda has moved one step closer to passage. The legislation, known as "fast track," gives the president enhanced authority to negotiate trade pacts.
  • USA Today
    May 26, 2015
    President Obama's trade agenda received a critical boost from the U.S. Senate late Friday with a bipartisan vote in favor of a "fast track" trade bill.
  • USA Today
    May 14, 2015
    Top House GOP leaders were confident Wednesday that Congress will renew "fast track" trade promotion authority despite an early defeat in the U.S. Senate.
  • USA Today
    May 13, 2015
    Senate Democrats blocked a motion Tuesday to begin debate on a "fast track" trade bill, delivering an early blow to President Obama and underscoring the deep divisions within the Democratic ranks on trade policy.
  • USA Today
    May 12, 2015
    President Obama's trade agenda faces its first test in the GOP-controlled Senate on Tuesday, with a vote on whether to move forward on legislation giving the president "fast track" trade authority.
  • USA Today
    May 6, 2015
    The U.S. Senate voted 51-48 Tuesday to approve a fiscal blueprint that finalizes the first joint GOP congressional budget in nearly a decade.
  • USA Today
    April 30, 2015
    Congressional Republicans announced Wednesday that negotiators have reached a deal to reconcile House and Senate budgets plans, which, if approved, would mark the first GOP budget in nearly a decade and the first joint congressional budget since 2009
  • USA Today
    April 29, 2015
    The Senate is debating this week legislation to grant Congress greater authority over a nuclear deal with Iran, but amendments to the bipartisan agreement could complicate its chances of passage.
  • USA Today
    April 20, 2015
    The new Congress is showing early signs that lawmakers are working more and allowing more input from both parties in the Senate, a new report finds.
  • USA Today
    April 17, 2015
    Top lawmakers reached a deal Thursday on legislation to grant President Obama "fast track" trade authority to advance one of the largest trade pacts in history, a step that could set off one of the sharpest legislative battles of the year a
  • USA Today
    April 16, 2015
    Now that the first 100 days of the first GOP-controlled Congress in nearly a decade are in the rearview mirror, Republicans say the party is knocking the dust off its governing playbook for what could be one of the more productive legislative periods
  • USA Today
    April 7, 2015
    The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will move ahead with legislation that requires congressional approval of any Iran nuclear deal reached by President Obama, the committee's chairman, Sen.
  • USA Today
    March 27, 2015
    The Republican-controlled Senate voted 52-46 along party lines early Friday morning to advance the first Republican budget in nearly a decade.
  • USA Today
    March 20, 2015
    Under pressure from the Pentagon and a bloc of Republican lawmakers, House GOP leaders have agreed to add additional defense spending into their annual budget resolution when it comes up for a vote next week.
  • USA Today
    March 19, 2015
    Senate Republicans unveiled Wednesday their first budget in nearly a decade. The 10-year fiscal blueprint achieves balance, raises no new taxes, repeals Obamacare, but keeps Medicare and Social Security intact.
  • USA Today
    March 17, 2015
    House Republicans will unveil a 10-year budget blueprint Tuesday that they say will cut $5.5 trillion in spending and help create a budget surplus by 2026.
  • USA Today
    March 13, 2015
    A bipartisan Senate bill to combat sex trafficking has hit a snag over abortion language that threatens to derail otherwise popular legislation.
  • USA Today
    February 11, 2015
    The White House will seek authority for the use of military force to combat Islamic State extremists without an "enduring offensive combat" role for U.S. troops and with a three-year sunset date.
  • USA Today
    February 3, 2015
    President Obama's nearly $4 trillion budget blueprint is dead on arrival on Capitol Hill, but the administration's fiscal priorities are the opening salvo for what is shaping up to be a consequential year for the nation's finances.
  • USA Today
    January 27, 2015
    The federal government's 2015 budget deficit will fall slightly this year to $468 billion, the lowest since President Obama took office, according to the annual budget outlook released Monday by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.
  • USA Today
    January 21, 2015
    Congressional Republicans remain unmoved by calls for action on economic proposals outlined by President Obama in his State of the Union Address, particularly on his plan to raise taxes on wealthy Americans to expand middle-class tax breaks.
  • USA Today
    January 14, 2015
    Congressional Democrats say they suffered sweeping defeats in the midterm elections because the party did not have a clear economic message that appeals to and motivates voters.
  • USA Today
    January 9, 2015
    The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved legislation Thursday to authorize the construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, setting the stage for a full Senate vote on the long-stalled project and a showdown with the president.
  • USA Today
    January 5, 2015
    Republicans take control of both chambers of Congress on Tuesday for the first time in nearly a decade.
  • USA Today
    December 30, 2014
    In more than a decade of intelligence briefings and committee hearings on the U.S. war on terror, Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., saw mismanagement, incompetence and comic gold.
  • USA Today
    December 10, 2014
    Congress is quickly approaching a Thursday deadline to keep the government funded, but top lawmakers were prepared to approve a stopgap funding measure if necessary to buy lawmakers more time.
  • USA Today
    December 3, 2014
    Former Pentagon official Ashton Carter is the top candidate to replace outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and could be nominated this week, officials said Tuesday.
  • usa
    November 19, 2014
    The U.S. Senate defeated a bill to authorize construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, delivering a blow to Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., by members of her own party.
  • USA Today
    November 18, 2014
    Rep. Ben Ray Luján, D-N.M., will chair the House Democrats’ 2016 campaign operation, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced Monday.
  • USA Today
    November 4, 2014
    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has once again proven her status as one of the Democratic Party’s top fundraisers. For the 2014 elections, Pelosi set a new personal record by raising just over $101 million.
  • USA Today
    October 27, 2014
    On a recent bus tour through economically depressed small towns in the heart of the state's coal country, Sen.
  • USA Today
    October 2, 2014
    A record number of African Americans are running for federal office this year, but their advances in elected office have been met by increased racial polarization in politics, particularly in the Deep South.
  • USA Today
    September 10, 2014
    House bill would fund government through mid-December
  • USA Today
    September 8, 2014
    Congress returns Monday for a three-week sprint to the legislative finish that will focus on political messages ahead of the midterm elections that could transfer control of the U.S. Senate to Republicans.
  • USA Today
    August 27, 2014
    AD SPONSOR: Dan Sullivan THE RACE: U.S. Senate STATE: Alaska ANALYSIS: Republican Dan Sullivan is challenging first-term Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, in a race that is expected to be the costliest in state history.
  • USA Today
    August 25, 2014
    Senate Democratic candidates are walking a political tightrope in the dozen races that will determine control of the chamber next year and shape the final years of President Obama's second term.
  • USA Today
    August 19, 2014
    Three Republicans face off Tuesday at the end of a bruising battle for the right to take on Democratic Sen. Mark Begich in the fall, one of the most critical races for determining control of the Senate.
  • USA Today
    July 29, 2014
    The Senate delayed until Tuesday a critical test vote on whether to reinstate expired federal benefits for the long-term unemployed.
  • USA Today
    July 29, 2014
    The U.S. Senate took a step toward reinstating expired jobless benefits for 1.3 million people, but significant disagreements and legislative hurdles remain before Congress can approve the assistance.
  • USA Today
    July 29, 2014
    Two House Democrats announced Wednesday they will not seek re-election this November, providing Republicans with at least one opportunity to pick up a seat and further continuing a retirement trend among centrist lawmakers.
  • USA Today
    July 29, 2014
    House and Senate negotiators unveiled a $1.012 trillion spending bill late Monday to fund the government until October and eliminate the threat of another shutdown during that time.
  • USA Today
    July 28, 2014
    The U.S. Senate approved on a bipartisan 72-26 vote a sweeping spending bill to fund the government through September and eliminate the threat of another government shutdown during that time.
  • USA Today
    July 25, 2014
    Three top congressional lawmakers said Sunday that Russia may have assisted Edward Snowden in leaking classified national security intelligence.
  • USA Today
    July 25, 2014
    The Republican National Committee is on track to compress the party's nomination process for a presidential candidate in 2016, though Iowa and New Hampshire will still be the first states to cast votes in the process.
  • USA Today
    July 25, 2014
    President Obama put Congress on notice Tuesday night that he is poised to act without their help, but congressional Republicans countered that a president can go only so far without the legislative branch, even one as unpopular as this.
  • USA Today
    July 25, 2014
    House Republican leaders unveiled on Thursday their principles for an overhaul of the nation's immigration laws.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    House Republican leaders unveiled late Tuesday a resolution authorizing the creation of a select committee to investigate the Benghazi attack on a U.S. consulate in 2012 that resulted in the death of four Americans.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    The already uphill battle in this Congress to overhaul the nation's immigration laws became even more difficult Thursday when House Speaker John Boehner cast doubts that a bill can pass this year.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    House Republican leaders are moving ahead with an increase in the nation's debt limit in exchange for a reversal of minor cuts in military pensions that were part of the recent bipartisan budget deal.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    Three years of battling over the nation's debt and borrowing authority reached an anticlimactic end Wednesday, when the Senate approved with little debate and only minor delay a House-passed measure to suspend the debt ceiling until March 2015.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., is taking issue with the National Journal‘s ranking of Senate GOP primary rival Rep.
  • USA Today
    July 23, 2014
    President Obama's call to raise the federal minimum wage could help lift 900,000 workers out of poverty, but at a cost of as many as 500,000 jobs, according to an analysis released today by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office.
  • USA Today
    July 22, 2014
    The 2014 primary election season that kicks off March 4 may serve as a test of the Tea Party's ability to shape the Republican Party. The movement that became a potent political force in the 2010 elections and helped Republicans retake contro
  • USA Today
    July 22, 2014
    The storied career of the longest-serving lawmaker in the nation's history, Rep. John Dingell, is drawing to a close as he announced Monday that his current term will be his last.
  • USA Today
    July 22, 2014
    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., don’t agree on much, but they found common ground Tuesday when they dampened expectations for an overhaul of the federal tax code this year.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    The U.S.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    Congress took its first official steps to address the ongoing international crisis in Ukraine on Thursday, with a leading House committee approving a symbolic resolution condemning Russia's recent actions, and the U.S.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    Tuesday's election in Florida for a U.S. House seat provides the first indication of how voters are leaning in 2014 and the effectiveness of the two parties' competing messages in this midterm election year.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    A bipartisan group of senators announced a tentative deal Thursday to extend through May jobless benefits for two million of America's long-term unemployed.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    C-SPAN marked 35 years of live coverage of the U.S.
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    Warning: Increased voter turnout could be a political side effect of marijuana. The latest George Washington University Battleground poll, a national survey of likely voters, reveals that nearly four in 10 respondents say they would be "much
  • USA Today
    July 21, 2014
    Congress is working to send legislation to President Obama by the end of the week to reaffirm support for Ukraine, provide loan guarantees and impose further sanctions on Russia for its annexation of Crimea.
  • USA Today
    July 18, 2014
    House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp's decision to retire from Congress shows that the GOP's self-imposed term limits for committee chairmen are a mistake and should be scrapped.
  • USA Today
    July 18, 2014
    The U.S. Senate approved legislation Monday that would reinstate expired jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed, but the proposal faces opposition from House Republicans who say it doesn't do enough to spur job creation.
  • USA Today
    July 16, 2014
    House Republicans are working to unveil by Friday their counteroffer to President Obama's initial $3.7 billion emergency spending request to stop undocumented, unaccompanied minors from crossing the southwestern border.
  • USA Today
    July 15, 2014
    Six states are holding primary election contests on Tuesday to set the ballots for some of 2014's most consequential general election battles.
  • USA Today
    July 15, 2014
    After weeks of internal debate, reluctant House Democrats chose Wednesday to engage in the GOP-led Benghazi select committee and seat a full roster on the 12-member panel.
  • USA Today
    July 11, 2014
    The U.S. House sent a bipartisan message Thursday, voting to end the practice of bulk collection of phone records conducted by the National Security Agency.
  • USA Today
    July 11, 2014
    A lengthy and divisive Republican Senate primary playing out in Georgia is fueling Democratic optimism for a victory that could fend off a GOP takeover of the U.S. Senate.
  • USA Today
    July 8, 2014
    Congress returns this week after a two-week Easter break to confront a spring season of votes on legislation that serves notice that the midterm election season is kicking into high gear.
  • USA Today
    July 8, 2014
    Two months after the House of Representatives chartered a new committee to investigate the 2012 Benghazi attacks, the panel will begin getting down to work in July, Chairman Trey Gowdy said, but it will not be in a hurry to make headlines.

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