Capitol Hill Buzz: Reid a Clinton fan, but hasn't endorsed

AP News
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Posted: Jul 13, 2015 7:24 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid of Nevada will help play host when presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton visits Capitol Hill on Tuesday. But he hasn't endorsed her yet.

"I'm really a Clinton fan but right now I've not endorsed anyone," Reid said Monday in an interview on KNPR, the Nevada public radio station. "I'm going to go to an event for Hillary in a few days but I'll do my endorsement later."

Reid encouraged then-Sen. Barack Obama early on to enter the 2008 presidential race; Obama went on to beat Clinton.

Reid seemed to make clear Monday he was in Clinton's corner, but he also had kind words for Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the independent challenging Clinton from the left.

"He's really a progressive guy and that's an understatement," Reid said of Sanders, "but he's also one of the nicest guys to have in the Senate Democratic caucus, and I like him a lot."

"But anyway I'm more of a Hillary fan," Reid said.

Other leading congressional Democrats have already enthusiastically endorsed Clinton, who will attend a series of meetings in the Capitol on Tuesday with House and Senate Democrats.

Reid, who is retiring in 2016, also weighed in on the race to replace him. He contended that the Republican candidate for his Senate seat, Rep. Joe Heck, has "voted lockstep with the crazies in the House" but "tries to cover that up" when he returns to Nevada.

Reid is backing former Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and said the Democrat has an "unblemished record."

Heck's office declined comment.

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Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., is taking aim at the pay gap in World Cup soccer.

Leahy introduced a Senate resolution Monday calling on FIFA to pay women athletes as much as men.

In a press release, Leahy noted that the U.S. women's team is being paid $2 million for its World Cup victory this month over Japan. By contrast, the German men's team was paid $35 million last year for its World Cup victory.

"I hope the story of the American Women's World Cup champions not receiving fair treatment by FIFA will inspire more people to join the fight for equal prize awards," Leahy said. "With this resolution that I introduce today, let the Senate be on record in support of fair treatment for all World Cup champions as we urge FIFA to change its policy."

FIFA did not immediately respond to an emailed question to its media department.

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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell reviewed steps his league has taken against domestic violence and on-field injuries in a closed-door, 45-minute session Monday with several dozen House Republican lawmakers and aides.

But there was nothing new about one of the big questions on fans' minds these days — when he will rule on New England Patriot star quarterback Tom Brady's appeal of his four-game "Deflategate" suspension.

"When we reach it," Goodell said when a reporter asked when he will announce his decision.

Lawmakers emerging from the Capitol basement meeting room said Goodell described the "eye in the sky" system the NFL uses to review plays, in which spotters watch games for potential injuries, including reviewing recorded replays to get better views of each play. The spotters can communicate with a team's medical personnel to point out players who have been hurt.

Goodell also described the NFL's policy, instituted last year, of suspending players six games for domestic violence, with a lifetime ban for a second offense. That policy was announced after Goodell was criticized for initially suspending Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice just two games for punching his fiancé.

The NFL investigated Brady and the Patriots for using underinflated balls in their AFC championship game 45-7 victory over the Indianapolis Colts. The league announced its four-game suspension of Brady in May, but Brady has appealed and had a 10-hour hearing with Goodell last month.