Washington Week

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John Bresnahan

John Bresnahan is co-founder of Punchbowl News.

John Bresnahan is one of the most-experienced journalists on Capitol Hill, with more than 27 years covering Congress, White House and federal agencies.A New York native, Bresnahan moved to Washington in 1989. After a stint at U.S. News & World Report, Bresnahan began covering EPA and the automobile and utilities industries for Inside Washington Publishers in the early 1990s.

In 1994, as House Republicans were about to win control of Congress for the first time in four decades, Bresnahan helped start Inside Congress. Bresnahan was part of a team that broke numerous stories, including the start of the “K Street Project,” which changed the way the Washington lobbying world operates.

In early 1998, Bresnahan moved over to Roll Call, then the top insider publication on Capitol Hill. Bresnahan covered both the House and Senate, as well as breaking numerous leadership and ethics stories, including reports on Tom DeLay and the Jack Abramoff  scandal. Bresnahan ended his stint at Roll Call as an associate editor.

In late 2006, Bresnahan left Roll Call for POLITICO, where he took over as congressional bureau chief, a job he held for 14 years. Bresnahan helped make Politico’s Congress team the best in the business, and he won awards for his writing and reporting.

Bresnahan loves the New York Yankees, Knicks and Giants, and he loathes Boston sports clubs and their fans.

Most Recent Appearances

Recent Stories

    October 15, 2020
    Amy Coney Barrett’s appointment would shift the ideological balance of the high court for a generation and takes place just weeks before a presidential election. Yet Barrett’s hearings have been remarkably low key.
    September 24, 2020
    The House and Senate have spent the past two years staring down some of the most consequential political events of recent decades: the longest-ever government shutdown; a presidential impeachment; a deadly global pandemic; a deepening economic recess
    September 10, 2020
    While the GOP proposal almost certainly won’t receive the 60 votes needed to move forward in the Senate, Republican leaders are hoping to get at least 51 votes for the package in an effort to show party unity and pressure Democrats.
    August 8, 2020
    Two weeks of closed-door talks — with Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Schumer facing off against White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Mnuchin — failed to lead to a breakthrough on a new coronavirus relief package.
    July 28, 2020
    Senate Republicans released their $1 trillion coronavirus relief proposal Monday afternoon, setting off what could be weeks of tough political battles with Democrats over unemployment insurance, state and local aid, and liability protection for busin
    July 23, 2020
    Senate Republicans plan to roll out a $1 trillion coronavirus relief package Thursday morning, although there remains differences between the White House and GOP leadership on key portions of the measure, especially unemployment assistance.
    July 22, 2020
    Senate Republicans will start unveiling their new coronavirus relief bill on Wednesday, although the party remains sharply divided over some of the proposals, including one of President Donald Trump’s top demands.
    July 16, 2020
    The number of coronavirus cases is surging, and congressional leaders are squabbling. It’s an ominous foreshadowing of the coming partisan clash over the next relief package.
    July 2, 2020
    The high point of 2020 for Senate Republicans — if there is one — may have been Feb. 6...In the almost five months since that day, the coronavirus pandemic has killed nearly 130,000 Americans and decimated the U.S. economy.
    June 4, 2020
    The House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on police brutality on June 10 as Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic leaders push to have a police reform package on the floor by the end of the month.
    May 16, 2020
    The House passed a $3 trillion coronavirus relief package Friday evening, with Speaker Nancy Pelosi working late into the day to shepherd the behemoth bill to passage, overcoming opposition from almost all Republicans and some Democrats.
    April 16, 2020
    President Donald Trump is threatening to invoke a never-before-used authority to push through dozens of executive-branch nominees while Congress remains out of Washington because of the coronavirus crisis.
    April 10, 2020
    Speaker Nancy Pelosi signaled Thursday that the House is unlikely to return to session later this month, her clearest indication yet that Congress — like the rest of the country — could remain shuttered for weeks or even longer as the coronavirus cri
    March 26, 2020
    Senators in both parties hailed the passage of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security, or CARES Act, as a major achievement, especially considering the extraordinary circumstances — a largely deserted Capitol, senators huddled in self-qua
    March 23, 2020
    Sen. Rand Paul on Sunday announced he has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, becoming the first senator and third member of Congress known to have contracted the virus.
    March 20, 2020
    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introduced the text of the Republicans’ trillion-dollar proposal for the so-called “Phase 3” coronavirus stimulus package, paving the way for negotiations with Democrats to formally begin.
    March 19, 2020
    House Democrats are drafting a new stimulus bill to address the coronavirus pandemic — legislation designed as their counter-offer to a trillion-dollar package currently being assembled in the Republican-controlled Senate.
    March 17, 2020
    The White House and Senate Republicans are considering melding together a House-passed coronavirus aid bill with President Donald Trump's request for $850 billion in stimulus spending, creating one massive aid package that the Senate could pass
    March 12, 2020
    Just hours before, Trump had taken his latest shot at Pelosi in a morning tweet. But that didn’t deter the speaker, who huddled with Mnuchin for a 30-minute meeting in her office.
    January 31, 2020
    Ahead of a tight vote on whether to hear new witnesses in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, the Senate is preparing for the possibility that this crucial roll call has an asterisk in the history books: It ends in a tie.
    January 25, 2020
    A small minority of GOP senators may ultimately end up mildly criticizing the president’s behavior in requesting investigations into Joe Biden and delaying military aid to Ukraine.
    January 22, 2020
    Mitch McConnell blinked. At least for a moment. After last-minute pushback from centrist GOP senators, the Senate majority leader slightly eased off his push Tuesday for a compressed calendar during President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial.
    January 15, 2020
    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell continues to tack back-and-forth on perhaps the most contentious issue of President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial — whether the Senate will allow new witnesses to testify in the case.
    January 7, 2020
    It’s hard to imagine anything eclipsing the imminent impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. But that’s where Congress finds itself with the United States on the brink of military conflict with Iran.
    December 18, 2019
    Pelosi’s comments, described by several Democrats in the room, capture her mood as the House prepares to vote to impeach the president, with near unity in her caucus. It will be only the third time in history the House has voted for impeachment.
    December 16, 2019
    Five senior aides to Rep. Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey resigned on Sunday as the lawmaker formally prepared to switch parties, stating they were “deeply saddened and disappointed by his decision.”
    February 25, 2019
    In the most high-profile congressional vote on gun control in years, House Democrats are set to pass a bipartisan measure this week that mandates federal background checks on all gun sales, including private transactions.