Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 14, 2016

Posts by Rebecca Gale

61 Posts

December 10, 2015

Ready for Congress 3.0?

UNITED STATES - FILE PHOTO: President Gerald Ford meeting with Tip O'Neill at the White House, Washington, D.C. on Feb. 6, 1975...Date Created/Published: 1975 Feb. 6. . (Photo By FILE PHOTO/CQ Roll Call)

Stuck in the 1970s? President Gerald Ford, left and then-House Majority Leader Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill share a moment in 1975. The way Congress operates is stuck in the era, argues the head of the Congressional Management Foundation. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The 2016 election year is almost upon us, but “Congress is largely still stuck in the 1970s,” argues Bradford Fitch, president of the Congressional Management Foundation.

Fitch, a former Hill staffer, would like to help shepherd his former employer into the modern era — “Congress 3.0,” he calls it. He thinks his organization can make some headway by utilizing two multiyear grants they were just awarded to study up to 12 congressional offices, survey the constituents who interact with those offices, and come up with a best practice toolkit. Full story

December 7, 2015

Holiday Party Time Kicks Off

'Tis the season: know the rules and expectations for holiday parties on Capitol Hill. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

‘Tis the season for holiday parties. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

It’s holiday party time, and every trade organization, lobbying shop and PR firm wants to ply members and their staff with booze, food and gifts.

“This is a happy hour and cocktail reception city,” said Rodell Mollineau, a former Senate staffer who is now a partner at Rokk Solutions. And none more so than the holiday season. Full story

December 2, 2015

Vote for a Refugees Capitol Quip!

CapitolQuip-11-23-15

The finalists for this week’s caption contest are ready for your vote:

— It might have been safer to take our chances with the sharks.
— Just our luck. We arrived during a presidential campaign.
— Couldn’t they at least abridge this path to nowhere?
— Where’s the TSA Pre-Check Line?

The cartoon with the winning caption will appear on this blog Saturday, and in the following print edition of Roll Call. The contest winner will receive a signed color print of his or her Capitol Quip cartoon from the cartoonist, R.J. Matson.

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 2:21 p.m.
Capitol Quip

Where the Drinkers Are in Congress

Just how many drinks are staffers imbibing at work events? CQ Roll Call set to find out. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Just how many drinks are staffers imbibing at work events? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The congressional drinking culture is alive and well, helped along by the demands of the job.

According to a survey of congressional staff, nearly half, or 47 percent, of staffers attend social events for work either once or twice a week. Those events are predominantly serving alcoholic beverages. Perhaps that helped lead to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that shows the District of Columbia with a slightly higher percentage of adult binge drinkers (22 percent) as compared to the national average of 16 percent. Full story

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 5 a.m.
Staffers

November 18, 2015

Vote for Your Favorite Honeymooners Capitol Quip!

CapitolQuip-11-16-15-445x312
The finalists for this week’s caption contest are ready for your vote:

— He just updated his Facebook Status to “It’s Complicated.”
— Do you think we should knock?
— If I were you, I’d throw in the towels.
— If this is the “honeymoon,” I hate to see what the marriage is going to look like!
— Maybe we should come back later.

The cartoon with the winning caption will appear on this blog Saturday, and in the following print edition of Roll Call. The contest winner will receive a signed color print of his or her Capitol Quip cartoon from the cartoonist, R.J. Matson.

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 2:24 p.m.
Capitol Quip

November 3, 2015

Telford-Esposo Halloween Night Nuptials

Telford and Esposo tied the knot (Photo courtesy Kristin Esposo/Katie Nesbitt Photography)

Telford and Esposo tied the knot (Photo courtesy Kristine Esposo/Katie Nesbitt Photography)

Erik Telford, president of the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity and publisher of Watchdog.org, and Kristine Esposo, senior director at The Herald Group, were married on Oct. 31 at Saint Peter’s on Capitol Hill Catholic Church.

The two met in typical Washington, D.C., fashion: networking for a job reference. Esposo received an email from a sorority sister asking her to put in a good word for Telford, who was applying for a job at Americans for Prosperity, the organization where she had recently interned.

Full story

October 2, 2015

Members of Congress, Staff Tee Off to Remember Chip Kennett

Kennett with his wife, Sheila, in Nov. 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Kennett and wife Sheila in November. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Members of Congress, current and former staffers are among the honorary host and tournament committees of The Chip Kennett Memorial Golf Tournament, scheduled for Oct. 26 at the Westfields Golf Club in Clifton, Va.

Kennett was a former Capitol Hill staffer who received a stage IV lung cancer diagnosis in 2012 at the age of 31. He became an advocate for more cancer research funding and increased access to clinical trial medications, even testifying to Congress about his personal experience. He died on Jan. 17, at the age of 34.

Advocates within the cancer community credit his fight with helping spur congressional action. Full story

June 2, 2015

Farmers Market Returns to HHS Plaza

HHS Farmers Market

The summer farmers market is open for business. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo).

Good news for those who work near the Health and Human Services Department. (Looking at you, Rayburn.)

On Wednesday, HHS will open the 2015 season of its farmers market. The market will be open on Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., from June 3 through Oct. 30. The market is located just off the National Mall at 4th Street and Independence Avenue Southwest. Full story

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 4:07 p.m.
Food

May 14, 2015

Looking Good in That #Strengthie

The Markey #strengthie (Courtesy Twitter)

The Markey #strengthie (Courtesy Twitter)

Just when you thought selfies couldn’t get any more prevalent, the ONE Campaign comes in strong with a new one.

It’s called a #strengthie: a selfie that pays homage to the “Rosie the Riveter” and “We Can Do It” images of female empowerment. Members of Congress, including Sen. Edward J. Markey and Reps. Katherine M. Clark, Joeseph P. Kennedy III, Jim McGovern, all D-Mass., and Gwen Moore, D-Wis., are joining Beyoncé and others in ONE’s global day of action to fight poverty and sexism through social media. Full story

May 8, 2015

Breakfast in the Capital, Shake Shack Style

Mornings at Union Station just got a bit brighter.

Shake Shack, the New York City-based burger, hot dog and shake shop, will start offering breakfast at the Union Station location on Monday, May 11th. The expanded offerings are expected to be available Monday through Friday from 7 to 10:30 a.m.

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

This is the third Shake Shack location to offer breakfast and the first in the D.C. area; Shake Shacks at JFK Airport and Grand Central Station in New York also have the option.

The expanded carte features breakfast offerings forged from: Martin’s potato rolls (same as on the burgers), Pat LaFrieda sausage, applewood-smoked bacon and cage-free eggs supplied by Niman Ranch, as well as American cheese.

Stumptown cold brew coffee (unadulterated stuff comes in stubby bottles, the half-and-half doctored variety in cartons) and fresh-squeezed orange juice round out the new recruits. Full story

April 21, 2015

Let Them Eat Cake! America Eats Tavern Celebrates Administrative Professionals Day

Martha Washington¹s Chocolate Cake (center),  Carrot Cake (right), and Coconut Cake (left) are among the free slice offerings for Administrative Professionals Day (Photo Courtesy WHO).

Washington’s chocolate cake, center, carrot cake, right, and coconut cake, left, are among the free slice offerings for Administrative Professionals Day. (Photo Courtesy America Eats Tavern)

José Andrés is at it again.

To celebrate Administrative Professionals Day Wednesday, Andrés’ America Eats Tavern in McLean, Va., will offer a free slice of cake to all administrative professionals who show their business cards.

But what does this mean for Capitol Hill staffers, many of whom are “administrative professionals” in some sense of the word? Full story

April 9, 2015

Nursing Lounge Coming to Nationals Park?

It's a home run for Nationals Park, which plans on adding a nursing lounge this July  (CQ Roll Call File Photo).

It’s a home run for Nationals Park, which plans on adding a nursing lounge this July (CQ Roll Call File Photo).

Nationals Park may be getting a bit more family friendly this year.

Responding to a change.org petition started by an Arlington woman, a spokesperson for the Washington Nationals said there are plans to open a “state-of-the-art space to accommodate nursing mothers” at Nationals Park this July, in time for the All-Star break. Women currently have the option to use a designated conference room, but there is no view of the game from it, and the petition complained it lacked privacy and was uncomfortably warm. Full story

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 4:36 p.m.
Nationals

March 13, 2015

Step-Dancing the Night Away to Fight Cancer

Irish step dancers from the Culkin School of Traditional Irish Dance entertained guests at the Prevent Cancer Foundation Annual Spring Gala.

Irish step dancers entertained guests. (Courtesy Jack Hartzman Photography)

The hot ticket this past weekend? The Prevent Cancer Foundation’s 21st Annual Spring Gala, which on March 6 hosted about 900 guests who donned tuxedos and ball gowns to raise more than $1.6 million for cancer prevention and early detection.

Several guests donned green in support of this year’s Irish theme, “Ireland: Legendary and Contemporary.” Irish step dancers from the Culkin School of Traditional Irish Dance were the featured entertainment, and Irish Ambassador Anne Anderson gave the keynote address, pledging Ireland would become smoke-free by 2025.

Full story

March 4, 2015

View-Masters for the Win! ONE Campaign Takes Memes to Capitol Hill

Sen. Mazie K. Hirono, D-Hawaii, looks through a 1950s-style View-Master, which contains a series of memes by the ONE Campaign (Courtesy Rebecca Fudala/ONE Campaign).

Old school took a visit to Capitol Hill this week. As part of the ONE Campaign’s lobby day, members of Congress and staff received View-Masters filled with memes promoting foreign aid.

(Screenshot/Buzzfeed)

(Screenshot/Buzzfeed)

Members of Congress were quick to put the View-Masters to work; each knew what to do when presented with the toy. (By way of explanation for the iPad generation: A View-Master user puts their eyes to the lens to view a series of pictures that can be changed with a click.)

Full story

March 3, 2015

From One Form of Sausage-Making to Another

Former hill staffer Aaron Kusher, center, and Stan Feder, left of MeatCrafters prepare lunch at the processing plant in Landover, Md. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Kushner, center, Feder, left, and Alex Mejia, right, of MeatCrafters prepare lunch at the processing plant in Landover, Md. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

For Aaron Kline Kushner, working on Capitol Hill was a perfect entree into doing what he loves now: sausage-making.

“We get the joke all the time,” Kushner said. “We really know how the sausage gets made.” Full story

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