Wonkbook: It looks like Congress is going to punt on highway funding

July 15, 2014

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Wonkbook’s Number of the Day: Less than 3 percent. That's the percentage of Americans who identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual in the first large-scale government survey to measure Americans' sexual orientation.

Wonkbook’s Chart of the Day: 8 charts that show how climate change is making the world more dangerous.

Wonkbook's Top 5 Stories: (1) Congress likely to punt again on highway funding; (2) let the expedited deportations begin; (3) Medicaid backlog madness; (4) NSA impacts, political and economic; and (5) making college better and more accessible.

1. Top story: It looks like Congress is going to punt on highway funding — again 

White House backs House's stopgap approach to replenish trust fund. "President Barack Obama is pressing Congress to make a long-term commitment to keep highway and transit aid flowing to states, but lawmakers appear headed for a short-term patch to sustain projects through next May. Obama has proposed a $302 billion, four-year transportation spending plan that is paid in part by closing corporate tax loopholes. The White House on Monday said it would support a smaller, $11 billion Republican House bill that finances transportation projects for nine months, but said in a statement that the legislation 'does not address the continued need to pass a long-term authorization bill.'" Kelly Kennedy in USA Today.

Primary source: Summary of what pays for the bill: Pensions smoothing, customs user fees and underground storage tanks.

Pretty much no one is happy with a short-term funding stopgap. "The nation's governors are incredulous. Road builders are apoplectic. President Barack Obama and members of his administration are puzzled. But passing a large-scale package...has proved increasingly difficult for Congress in recent years, even though it means bringing money to every state....Congress most recently increased taxes on gasoline and diesel...in 1993, but it didn't index the taxes for inflation....Declines in the amount that Americans drive and the amount of fuel they consume exacerbate the trend. Again this year, lawmakers are battling over how to fund even a temporary fix, suggesting any long-term solution will be even more difficult to forge." Siobhan Hughes in The Wall Street Journal.

Some Democrats wanted an extension only until December — to make a gas-tax hike more politically feasible. "Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), the No. 3 Democrat in the Senate, was among those at Thursday’s markup pushing to extend funding for highways until the lame-duck session after the election. Carper and other Democrats argued the lame duck would be the best shot for winning an increase in the federal gas tax, given how far away the vote would be from the next election." Keith Laing in The Hill.

Hey, Congress: Time to dust off those non-starters. "Calling all magicians! Now that we're tapping the fund for leaking underground storage tanks and giving the green light to 'pension smoothing'...we're pretty sure the highway trust fund won't go broke in August....Yes, the House and Senate still need to vote on the proposed stopgaps, and there are still some differences among the negotiators. But on balance, all signs point in the same direction....But...all those ideas that experts have dubbed 'nonstarters' need a fresh look. Gas tax? Devolution? Vehicle Miles Traveled? Repatriation Tax Breaks? Public-private partnerships? Shrinking the Transportation Department? Bring it on. Maybe there are some new ones out there, too." Fawn Johnson in National Journal.

Obama to use executive action to boosting private infrastructure spending. "The push will include a new executive action on Thursday that the White House said would increase private-sector spending on infrastructure projects, though officials didn't provide more details....The White House earlier this year called for an overhaul of the tax code that would create more than $300 billion in new revenue that the White House wanted to use on infrastructure work. That proposal got no traction in Congress, and the White House has had to defer to lawmakers on piecemeal measures to address these projects. The White House has tried to inject a sense of urgency into the highway funding talks, with little success." Damian Paletta in The Wall Street Journal.

Interactive chart: The states with the worst roads in the U.S. "The White House would like you to know that 34 percent of the 172,201 miles of public roads you may drive in California are in poor condition, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers. The same is true of about 20 percent of Maryland's roads, and 23 percent of New York's. West Virginia, meanwhile, has some abominably bad-off bridges — 35 percent of the 7,125 in the state are considered structurally deficient. If Congress doesn't plug the trust fund...federal dollars that prop up state projects building and repairing roads and bridges will soon be rationed as new gas tax receipts come in." Emily Badger in The Washington Post.

Two conservative groups are opposing the bill. "Reaction on the Hill to news that Heritage Action and the Club for Growth would oppose the Camp bill was unconcerned, and even nonchalant. Aides from both parties said they still expected the measure to pass the House and for Wyden and Camp to eventually merge their proposals." Tom Curry in Roll Call.

IEA chides U.S. for not raising fuel taxes. "Congressional efforts to keep gasoline prices low are missing the big picture, says the head of the International Energy Agency. 'If I look at your gasoline prices — wow — I see that they’re quite a bit lower than what we pay in Europe,' Maria van der Hoeven said Monday....'The main reason is your gasoline taxes.'...While many lawmakers remain loath to hit voters at the pump, Sens. Christopher S. Murphy, D-Conn., and Bob Corker, R-Tenn., last month agreed that a $0.12 increase on gasoline tax would be one way to prop up the Highway Trust Fund. Van der Hoeven urged the United States to not to fall into complacency amid a boom of shale oil and gas." Randy Leonard in Roll Call.

Maps: The states with the most and fewest traffic deaths. Joseph Stromberg in Vox.

Other transportation reads:

Rail over pipelines for moving oil? Jennifer A. Dlouhy in the Houston Chronicle.

How parking spaces are eating our cities alive. Sarah Goodyear in The Atlantic CityLab.

Why higher fares would be good for public transit. Rohit T. Aggarwala in The Atlantic CityLab.

YGLESIAS: Congress is abandoning the principle that drivers should pay for highways. "The main proposals offered by the Senate Finance Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee both miss a crucial fact: Americans are driving less than they used to....Federal transportation spending has historically been financed by federal gasoline tax revenue....American cars have gotten more fuel efficient over time....The traditional formula of trying to build a quantity of highways that's roughly proportionate to what highway-users are willing to pay to use them makes a lot of sense. The new paradigm in Congress where highway spending is unrelated to driving-related tax revenue...is one of the public policy disasters of the past few years." Matthew Yglesias in Vox.

Top opinion

BECKWORTH: Why Summers is wrong about secular stagnation. "On the one hand, secular stagnation makes sense in theory, and even seems to in practice. Technological innovation — and with it, productivity — really have slowed down the past few decades....So has labor force growth now that the Boomers are starting to enter their golden years. And most telling, according to Summers, is the way that real interest rates have steadily fallen since the 1980s. But, on the other hand, there are real problems with the way we calculate real rates — problems that make it look like real rates have fallen more than they really have. And furthermore, today's techno and demographic pessimism both look overdone. In other words, there might not be any reason to think the economy is slumping into secular stagnation." David Beckworth in The Washington Post.

BIGGS AND SCHIEBER: Miscalculating the retirement income you'll need. "The Social Security Administration's website explains that 'most financial advisers say you'll need about 70% of your pre-retirement earnings to comfortably maintain your pre-retirement standard of living.' It then notes that 'under current law, if you have average earnings, your Social Security retirement benefits will replace only about 40%.' That line of thinking is misleading, often cited by progressives fighting benefit reforms that would address Social Security's $10 trillion shortfall. Here's why: Financial advisers do not calculate replacement rates the same way the Social Security Administration does." Andrew G. Biggs and Sylvester J. Schieber in The Wall Street Journal.

GARVER: Self-congratulation in Congress does little for the jobless. "To be sure, the Workplace Innovation and Opportunity Act...streamlines a bloated and ineffective patchwork of federal job training programs. It provides increased flexibility at the state and local level to provide training specific to the needs of local industries. And it creates a much-needed system of accountability that will allow policymakers to determine what’s working and what isn’t....But let’s take a step back here. The constituent pieces of the WIOA have been hanging around Washington in various bits of legislation for well over a year. And the problems with the country’s job training programs have been evident to anybody who’s paying attention for far longer than that." Rob Garver in The Fiscal Times.

ANSEL: The case against summer vacation. "My 10-year-old self would be appalled at what I am about to argue: Summer vacation is bad for kids and for America’s economic future. We need to end it — or at the very least provide stimulating summer enrichment for those who can’t afford it. The nine-month, 180-day school year is not a relic of our agrarian past...but rather the legacy of a bygone era when spending hours inside a sweltering, air-conditioning-free classroom (or office, for that matter) was implausible. Although most industries eliminated the summer furlough with the advent of temperature-controlled buildings, school boards have retained schedules that are stuck in the past, with serious consequences for America’s children." Bridget Ansel in Politico Magazine.

CARROLL: Why improving access to health care does not save money. "One of the oft-repeated arguments in favor of the Affordable Care Act is that it will reduce people’s need for more intensive care by increasing their access to preventive care....Moreover, it is often asserted that these developments will lead to reductions in health care spending. Unfortunately, a growing body of evidence makes the case that this may not be true. One of the most important facts about health care overhaul, and one that is often overlooked, is that all changes to the health care system involve trade-offs among access, quality and cost. You can improve one of these — maybe two — but it will almost always result in some other aspect getting worse." Aaron E. Carroll in The New York Times.

Animals interlude: These kittens react in unison to a shiny object.

2. The U.S. begins the expedited deportations of migrants. 

U.S. flies 38 to Honduras as part of expedited deportations. "Thirty eight women and children recently detained at the U.S. border were flown home to Honduras on Monday, in what U.S. officials say is the first of an expected increase in expedited deportations....The deportees, including 21 children aged 18 months to 15 years, were flown from El Paso, Texas, to the Honduran city of San Pedro Sula, near the country's Caribbean coast. San Pedro and nearby cities are the top Central American source of unaccompanied minors traveling to the U.S., said an internal Department of Homeland Security study. The U.S. has deported some 82,000 Central Americans, mostly adults, since October, the agency said." Dudley Althaus and Laura Meckler in The Wall Street Journal.

Honduras welcomes back plant of migrants. Could it help deter future migrants? "The first planeload of deportees to arrive since the policy shift included 21 children, aged between 18 months and 15 years, who flew into Honduras’ second city, San Pedro Sula, from El Paso, Texas, amid Honduran government promises of aid and jobs. Accompanying them were 17 women family members. The new government of Juan Orlando Hernández carefully choreographed the event and is clearly hoping other would-be migrants will be deterred." Jude Webber in The Financial Times.

Explainer: Need a refresher on the basics of the border crisis? Patrick Gillespie in McClatchy Newspapers.

What else could the Obama administration do? "The Obama administration, trying to walk a fine political line...on Monday said it is open to different approaches....President Barack Obama earlier this month asked Congress to give the Department of Homeland Security more discretion as it processes children arriving at the southwest border. Under a 2008 law, children who aren’t from Mexico and Canada must be placed with sponsors in the U.S. while waiting for a court to hear their deportation cases, a process that can take years. White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Monday said changes to current rules would allow DHS to more quickly repatriate individuals." Jeffrey Sparshott in The Wall Street Journal.

Coming up: Release of bipartisan Cornyn-Cuellar bills to speed deportations. "The legislation would rewrite the law to allow Central American minors be treated like those from Mexico and Canada, who can be deported more quickly. Under the plan, unaccompanied minors from any country would be able to have an immigration court hearing within seven days of their processing by Health and Human Services, and an immigration judge would be required to rule within three more days....The bill authorizes 40 new immigration judges to help process the cases....But some leading Democrats and immigrant rights' advocates have...said scaling back the protections would risk sending the children back to dangerous situations." David Nakamura in The Washington Post.

To pass any of Obama's desired funding, Boehner has a dilemma. "On Tuesday morning, House Republicans will confer privately...to discuss, among other topics, Obama's request for $3.7 billion....There is a good chance a majority of GOP lawmakers will want to attach strings before approving Obama's request, and some could propose alternatives to his plan altogether. In either case, the question is whether Boehner will stick to a process that is compliant with the so-called Hastert Rule, the informal GOP practice that bars a vote on legislation unless it has the support of a majority of House Republicans." Billy House in National Journal.

Are Republicans contradicting themselves on what authority Obama has? "Many conservatives have accused the White House of overstepping its executive authority. Now some Republicans are making the opposite claim: that the president isn’t doing enough to take advantage of his ability to do something about the flood of children detained at the border from Central American nations without waiting for the law to change....Michigan Representative Mike Rogers, a Republican who chairs the House intelligence committee, said, 'The president has tools in his toolbox that he can do immediately to stop this.'" Josh Eidelson in Bloomberg Businessweek.

Border crisis puts strain on military budget. "Obama last week requested $3.7 billion from Congress to respond to the flow of children crossing the border but that did not include additional funding for the military, which is housing thousands of immigrant children and trying to contain the violent drug trade.  Military officials say there’s a direct link between drug traffickers and the influx of immigrants from Central America, but that they lack the resources they need to combat the problem at the source." Kristina Wong in The Hill.

Other immigration reads:

Long read: Pipeline of children: A border crisis. Gang violence, lack of opportunity and misinformation lead to a mass exodus north to the U.S. Daniel Gonzalez and Bob Ortega in The Arizona Republic.

VINIK: The border crisis has nothing to do with border security. "Whatever the origin of the crisis, apprehending these unaccompanied minors — that is, border security — is not the problem right now. The problem is finding places to house all of the kids who've been apprehended. So, why does McCaul want his border control bill included in legislation for emergency funding? It’s not clear....But politics likely plays a major role: Border control may have little to do with the current crisis, but the public will likely conflate the two issues. That gives McCaul a chance to promote his border security bill, even if it isn’t directly connected to the problem." Danny Vinik in The New Republic.

STOLL: The economics of the border pileup. "Migration on these terms is not a solution to the problems facing Central Americans. Because jobs in the U.S. are scarce, and living costs are so high compared with Central America, even legal migration can beggar them. So what about all those women and children piling up on the border? Humanitarian advocates assume that the U.S. is their sanctuary — but what if it is the illusions of migration that wrecked their families in the first place?" David Stoll in The Wall Street Journal.

GERGEN AND KATZ: Use safe zones to tackle the border crisis. "First, we should respond generously to those children who have already arrived or will soon. For those who qualify for refugee status under U.S. law, we should ask families across our country to help provide new homes for them. Second, we should push to establish 'safe zones' — operated by the United Nations, supported by the U.S. — for returning children and their families in their native countries and work with those countries to reduce their violence and expand hope. Third, once the 'safe zones' are developed, we should set a firm date when all children who arrive thereafter will be returned to their native countries regardless." David Gergen and Daniel Katz in CNN.

Charity interlude: How you can help the migrant children.

3. Medicaid backlog madness 

7 million added to Medicaid since Obamacare rollout. "The figures...show enrollment climbing by 920,000 people during May, the latest month for which data is available. All told, new enrollments are up 11.4 percent since last October's Obamacare rollout. Eight million Americans have also signed up for private health insurance through new state-based Obamacare insurance marketplaces. But while private enrollment ended last spring, Medicaid enrollment continues year round. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services...said enrollment in Medicaid programs have risen 17 percent in 25 states and the District of Columbia, which have expanded Medicaid. New enrollments were only 3 percent higher in states that have not." David Morgan in Reuters.

We still don't know how many have signed up for small-biz coverage. "In contrast to the widely publicized enrollment numbers on the health care law’s individual marketplace, there’s apparently no way to know how many business owners and employees have signed up through the law’s new small-business exchanges. By all indications, though, it’s not very many." J.D. Harrison in The Washington Post.

But there are still major Medicaid backlogs. "The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have given six states...until [Monday] to provide plans on just how they're going to resolve the huge stacks of pending applications. But some of the states say they're being unfairly targeted by CMS. The Affordable Care Act is supposed to offer a 'no-wrong door' enrollment approach, in which an applicant could show up at a state or federal exchange Web site and sign up for Medicaid coverage....However, because of early problems with HealthCare.gov, federal officials had trouble sending Medicaid applications back to the states to review applicants' eligibility....The feds can't take all of the blame, though. Some of the states were slow to update Medicaid eligibility rules, and...had their own problems replacing outdated enrollment systems." Jason Millman in The Washington Post.

HHS offers states $100M to improve Medicaid. "Governors and state Medicaid directors had pressed the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for funds to review and improve the health program. The federal dollars will help states streamline the payment process and review state Medicaid data to find ways to improve the care patients receive. The new program is the latest from CMS to reform state Medicaid programs. The agency touted its past initiatives, noting that recent reforms had led to a sharp drop in hospital readmissions in North Carolina and emergency room visits in Washington." Ferdous Al-Faruque in The Hill.

N.C. GOP Gov. McCrory opens door to Medicaid expansion. "North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) said Monday he would leave the door open to expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act if federal officials allow his state to craft a plan that fits its own individual needs. In an interview on WFAE, Charlotte’s NPR affiliate, McCrory defended North Carolina’s refusal to expand existing Medicaid programs until fixes are made....Asked directly whether North Carolina would ever expand Medicaid, McCrory said nothing is off the table." Reid Wilson in The Washington Post.

ACA navigators could play a huge role again in 2015 enrollment. "More than 4,400 consumer assistance programs created under the Affordable Care Act helped an estimated 10.6 million people explore their new health insurance options and apply for coverage during the initial six-month enrollment period, according to a new Kaiser Family Foundation survey. But the programs that operated in states with their own online insurance marketplaces got more funding and helped more people than those in states on the federal exchange, the survey found. In the District of Columbia and 16 states that ran or were working toward running their own exchanges, the programs helped about twice as many people, relative to the uninsured population." Abby Goodnough in The New York Times.

Other health care reads:

Reid tees up bill to reverse Hobby Lobby. Ramsey Cox in The Hill.

Abortion fight brewing in the Senate. Elise Viebeck in The Hill.

Two-page form sparks a contraceptive showdown. Robert Pear in The New York Times.

Movie interlude: A brief history of movies.

4. The NSA fallout is about more than just privacy and freedom

America’s ‘freedom’ reputation is on the decline a year after NSA revelations. "In the wake of the revelations about U.S. surveillance programs from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden last year, the world is less convinced of the U.S.'s respect for personal freedoms according to new survey results from Pew Research....Pew calls this decline 'the Snowden Effect.' And some of the drops are significant — especially in countries where NSA surveillance received major domestic news coverage like Germany and Brazil. Still, Pew says, the U.S.'s reputation for respecting personal freedoms is relatively strong compared to other nations." Andrea Peterson in The Washington Post.

Germany is going so far as to use typewriters to avoid U.S. snooping. "Patrick Sensburg, chairman of the German parliament's National Security Agency investigative committee, now says he’s considering expanding the use of manual typewriters to carry out his group's work....Sensburg said that the committee is taking its operational security very seriously. "In fact, we already have [a typewriter], and it’s even a non-electronic typewriter," he said. If Sensburg’s suggestion takes flight, the country would be taking a page out of the Russian playbook. Last year, the agency in charge of securing communications from the Kremlin announced that it wanted to spend 486,000 rubles (about $14,800) to buy 20 electric typewriters as a way to avoid digital leaks." Cyrus Farivar in ArsTechnica.

It's not just about reputation. It's also about economic impact. "Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden is investigating the economic harm he said is being caused by the U.S. National Security Agency’s surveillance methods. Wyden, a persistent critic of the NSA, is using his perch as the panel’s chairman to broaden his attack on the agency’s practices, he said....Companies including Yahoo! Inc....and Microsoft Corp....have been waging a public-relations battle for more than a year in response to revelations of NSA spying....U.S. technology companies may lose as much as $35 billion in the next three years from foreign customers choosing not to buy their products because of concerns they cooperate with spy programs." Richard Rubin in Bloomberg.

NSA scandal a boon to the privacy business. "The Snowden revelations have been bad news for the administration — public faith in government fell to a record low of 44 percent this year. But the revelations have been a boon to the mobile security management industry, which is seeing increased demand for privacy protection products like encryption apps and secure mobile devices. By next year, the mobile security management industry is expected to be worth $1 billion, nearly double the $560 million it was valued at in 2013, according to ABI Research, a market intelligence firm based in New York, first noted in Reuters. Analysts say that is only likely to keep growing." Brianna Ehley in The Fiscal Times.

Meanwhile... Facebook is watching you watching TV. Robert Faturechi and Meg James in the Los Angeles Times.

Other tech reads:

Rise in electronic payments sharpens security focus. Megan R. Wilson in The Hill.

Baby interlude: Dog gives baby a tongue bath.

5. Higher education money matters

A simple reform to improve college accessibility. "Currently, college applicants must wait to apply for federal financial aid until the second semester of their senior year in high school. That's because the application requires income data from the prior calendar year. The result is that millions of college applicants don't know how much they will have to pay until just before they have to make their decision about which school to attend. But what if students could apply for financial aid in the beginning of their senior year — using their family's tax information from one calendar year earlier? This would allow applicants — particularly those who plan to attend a public college or university — to learn much more about their financial-aid packages far sooner than they currently do." Fawn Johnson in National Journal.

Related: What if filling out the FAFSA were as simple as a text message? Owen Phillips in NPR.

Companies that help students with loan debt often predatory. "Student loan debt hovers at more than $1 trillion, a threefold surge from a decade ago, and a record number of college students who graduated as the financial system nearly imploded have an average debt load of more than $20,000. More than half of recent graduates are unemployed or have low-paying jobs that do not require that expensive college degree. Some Americans, including baby boomers whose savings were devastated by the financial crisis, are still struggling to pay off their student loans well into their 50s. For the debt settlement industry, all this means a tantalizing gold mine of new customers." Rachel Abrams and Jessica Silver-Greenberg in The New York Times.

Long read: How private colleges are like cheap sushi. Anya Kamenetz in NPR.

A student-loan straitjacket. "Under the federal bankruptcy code, consumers almost never can get rid of student loans — unlike credit-card, medical and many other types of debt. The rule is meant to prevent people from filing for bankruptcy soon after they leave college in an attempt to renege on their school loans. On top of that, the process under Chapter 13 of the code generally restricts these borrowers from making full payments on student loans during the three-to-five-year bankruptcy period. That allows lenders to add interest, late fees and other penalties....The upshot: Aside from rare cases, student loans are the only consumer debt that ends up larger after bankruptcy. The rules have come under fire." Katy Stech in The Wall Street Journal.

States give slightly more funding to higher education. "Policy makers have largely embraced the idea that an increase in college graduates will fuel a better economy for their states. But any increases in state appropriations to colleges are likely to come with lots of strings attached, including the expectation that higher education will somehow buffer the state from the next recession." Eric Kelderman in The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Colleges warned they'll lose federal funding if they botch campus rape cases. "Colleges are required under the gender equity law Title IX to address sexual assault and harassment on campus. The ultimate punishment for a school violating Title IX is a complete loss of federal funding. No disciplinary procedure has ever gone that far....The Office of Civil Rights' lack of punitive abilities has caused activists and lawmakers to question whether the investigation process is really all that effective. Critics argue that it's not realistic to expect the department to cut off all federal funding to a school, including student loans and Pell grants. Lawmakers are considering adding more ways for the OCR to penalize a school for violating Title IX.." Tyler Kingkade in The Huffington Post.

Long read: Colleges are hoping that predictive analytics will help their dismal graduation rates. Libby Nelson in Vox.

Animal feast interlude: Watch this time-lapse video of thousands of bears feasting on fish.

Wonkblog roundup

CFPB sues law firm behind debt collection lawsuits. Danielle Douglas.

This is what housing for the homeless could actually look like. Emily Badger.

Citigroup to pay $7 billion to resolve mortgage securities investigation. Danielle Douglas.

The feds have had it with Medicaid backlogs. Jason Millman.

Which states have the worst roads in America. Emily Badger.

Here’s why Larry Summers is wrong about secular stagnation. David Beckworth.

"We’ve got ‘em on the run": Texas cities work to rein in payday loans. Lydia DePillis.

The coming global domination of chicken. Roberto A. Ferdman.

Omaha boy gets hilarious photo with Warren Buffett and Paul McCartney. Max Ehrenfreund.

Brookings: One political party is actively working to make government fail (guess which one!). Christopher Ingraham and Tom Hamburger.

Almost half of the world actually prefers instant coffee. Roberto A. Ferdman.

Americans are spending more money this summer, but not on fun stuff. Jonnelle Marte.

Et Cetera

IEA chief: U.S. energy security not as secure as we think. Jennifer A. Dlouhy in the Houston Chronicle.

Report cites VA struggles with benefits paid to veterans. Gregg Zoroya in USA Today.

Millions in federal emergency communications funding lost, diverted. Greg Gordon in McClatchy Newspapers.

The quiet movement to make government fail less often. David Leonhardt in The New York Times.

Yellen says Fed easy money needed even after recovery. Jonathan Spicer in Reuters.

The VA scandal just keeps spreading. Jordain Carney in National Journal.

Got tips, additions, or comments? E-mail us.

Wonkbook is produced with help from Michelle Williams and Ryan McCarthy.

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