Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
April 25, 2015

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April 24, 2015

WHCD Comes to Capitol Hill

Members of the Creative Coalition in town for the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner Friday are expected to pop by a few congressional offices for some face time.

A tipster told HOH nearly two dozen actors, directors and all-purpose entertainers are planning to fan out across the mostly empty Capitol and take meetings about shoring up support for the arts with aides to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as well as whatever appropriations personnel happens to be around.

Some of the better-known performers staff may see peeking through the front door include:

Creative Coalition President Tim Daly

Full story

Congressional Hits and Misses: Week of April 20, 2015 (Video)

As Nancy Pelosi and John A. Boehner smooched, members spent the remainder of the workweek protecting turtle passwords, choking up over Sam Houston and threatening to drop activists’ asses.

Full story

April 23, 2015

Adventures in Babysitting With Rep. Gerald E. Connolly

Adventures in Babysitting With Rep. Gerald E. Connolly

Connolly, perhaps prepping for future babysitting. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

On Thursday, Take Your Child To Work Day became “Rep. Gerald E. Connolly Will Take Your Baby And Only Return It Upon Request” Day.

The Virginia Democrat was having the time of his life in the Speaker’s Lobby during the late-morning vote series, holding court and showing off Illinois Democrat Tammy Duckworth’s baby girl.

Connolly held out little Abigail O’kalani Bowlsbey so she could be appropriately admired by lawmakers, aides and reporters in the vicinity. The five-month-old, dressed in a pale pink cotton sweater, leggings and hat, seemed to be enjoying the attention almost as much as Connolly.

“She needed a break from the floor speeches,” he explained, giving his new ward a little bounce. “That last one was a humdinger, wasn’t it?” Full story

April 22, 2015

Minnesota Hotdish Banter Is Simply Delicious

Minnesota Hotdish Banter Is Simply Delicious

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

How good a cook is Rep. Betty McCollum? Skilled enough that the eight-term Democrat didn’t have to campaign — or even show up, for that matter — at the fifth annual Minnesota Hotdish Off to clinch congressional bragging rights.

McCollum bested the rest of the delegation with a combination of savory ground turkey, cruciferous greens, meaty mushrooms and nutty wild rice bolstered by just a hint of cinnamon. Full story

Yoga on the Hill Sliding Over to East Lawn

When last we checked in with the Congressional Yogi Association, the nascent group of Hill staffers had selected the West Lawn to serve as the staging area for its debut event.

The CYA has since repositioned itself, bending over backward to make its coming-out party — still scheduled for May 1 — more attractive to the community.

Yoga on the Hill Sliding Over to East Lawn

(Screenshot)

“It will be more convenient for members and participants to access … and easily visible on Independence Avenue Southwest,” an organizer told HOH about shifting the al fresco workout over to the grassy area opposite the Cannon House Office Building.

Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, remains on board as official host, while former NFL linebacker Keith Mitchell is still expected to run the show.

All attendees need to worry about is getting there and being well prepared.

“Please bring your own mat and take public transportation,” the CYA implores fellow enthusiasts.

Related:

Yoga Crews Court Congressional Posers

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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April 21, 2015

Steve Knight Lashes Out at Conservative Activists

Steve Knight Lashes Out at Conservative Activists

(Screenshot)

Updated 7 p.m. | Freshman lawmaker Steve Knight got so fed up over the weekend with the anti-immigration protesters who have been hounding him for months that he finally snapped.


“If you touch me again, I’ll drop your ass. Alright?” the vulnerable California Republican warned an activist who confronted him outside his Simi Valley office. Knight,  who in January replaced retired GOP Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, is facing a steep learning curve when it comes to fundraising (according to the latest Federal Election Commission data, Knight collected under $29,000 this past quarter).

The weekend exchange, first reported by SCVTalk blogger Mike Devlin, was captured by supporters of the immigration-reduction outfit NumbersUSA. Full story

Minnesota Pols Prep for Hotdish Fest

Carb lovers, rejoice!

The Minnesota delegation is expected to once again flood the halls of Congress Wednesday with the aromas of melted cheese-covered, processed meat-packed, condensed soup-spiked, fried potato-filled delicacies better known as hotdish.

Minnesota Pols Prep for Hotdish Fest

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The invitation-only event — reserved for Gopher State pols, their staff and congressional press — is scheduled to take place in Room 430 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building beginning at 12:30 p.m. Full story

April 20, 2015

Listen Up, D.C.! Here Comes the White House Correspondents’ Jam.

If getting the ear of Washington was half as easy as coaxing accomplished writers who moonlight as rockers out from behind their laptops and up onto stage, Mother Nature Network Co-Founder Chuck Leavell might very well already be running #ThisTown.

Between his musical stature (the veteran keyboardist is gearing up for another tour with the Rolling Stones) and environmental advocacy bona fides (he’s testified before Congress about forestry issues), Leavell seems like the ideal get for the celebrity maelstrom the annual White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner has become. Instead of waiting around for others to court him, the budding media mogul is wooing music lovers via the inaugural White House Correspondents’ Jam.

Listen Up, D.C.! Here Comes the White House Correspondents Jam.

(Courtesy Mother Nature Network)

Leavell recruited five correspondent-fronted bands — Fortune Senior Editor-at-Large Brian Dumaine, Esquire scribe Tom Junod, CNBC Senior Economics Reporter Steve Liesman, New Yorker Editor David Remnick and Vanity Fair Contributing Editor Mark Rozzo are all slated to play with their respective outfits — to blow the doors off the Fairmont Hotel (2401 M St. NW) on April 24 from 7 to 11 p.m.

“Politics can get really heavy. This is an opportunity for everyone to say, ‘Hey! It’s just rock and roll,’” Leavell told HOH. Full story

Bluewater Productions Toons Into 2016 Race

Bluewater Productions is looking forward to putting its stamp on anyone and everyone who plans to give the White House a go in the next presidential contest — a daunting proposition that should keep its illustrators busy for months to come.

Darren Davis, founder of the independent publishing house, waded into the Republican primary fight with the April 14 release of a graphic novel focusing on aspiring POTUS Sen. Rand Paul.

Bluewater Productions Toons Into 2016 Race

(Courtesy Bluewater Productions)

 

The book, Davis admitted, was rushed out in order to dovetail with the Kentucky Republican’s campaign rollout.

“A lot of these depend on timing,” he said of the politically themed graphic novels the company has sporadically turned out since 2008. “With the Rand Paul one, we got extremely lucky and only had to move up the comic book by a week.”

Davis’ desire to weigh in on leading issues has led to the creation of carefully researched biographies of modern politics’ most colorful characters, such as former Reps. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz.; Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.; and the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass. Full story

April 18, 2015

Congressional Hits and Misses: Week of April 13, 2015 (Video)

Lawmakers shook off the rust of a two-week recess recalling trips to McDonald’s, playing their favorite Disney ringtones and counting to seven.

Full story

April 16, 2015

Scott Peters Challenger Poised to Launch Bid From Afar

Iraq war veteran and House hopeful Jacquie Atkinson plans to toss her hat into the ring Thursday to unseat two-term California Democrat Scott Peters.

The odd thing is, the Republican will be making her intentions known in a district other than the one she’s hoping to represent.

According to an invite published online, Atkinson plans to formally get her campaign rolling at 6 p.m. via a kick-off event at Heat Bar and Kitchen in San Diego.

Scott Peters Challenger Poised to Launch Bid From Afar

(Screenshot)

While the menu seems plenty all-American (well, New American, anyway), a political insider pointed out that the restaurant is in the North Park section of town — placing it in the proverbial backyard of neighboring Rep. Susan A. Davis, D-Calif. Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 12:59 p.m.
Nationwide, Oopsie, Reps

April 15, 2015

Bill Johnson’s Clout Undercut by Gyrocopter Mayhem

It turns out we’re all equal in the eyes of the U.S. Capitol Police when things go cuckoo on the congressional campus.

At least that’s the lesson a tipster presumes Rep. Bill Johnson learned when he attempted to play the “do-you-know-who-I-am?” card while cops were busy dealing with the flying dunceman who whizzed through restricted airspace before setting down in D.C.

Bill Johnson’s Clout Undercut by Gyrocopter Mayhem

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Bill Johnson and his staff tried the “I’m-a-member-of-Congress” trick to cut through the crime scene of the gyrocopter,” our spy said of the game played by just about anybody in D.C. sporting a patriotic lapel pin.

The Ohio Republican, it would seem, did not warrant special consideration. “Police made him walk around like everyone else,” the tipster told HOH, adding that the re-directed pol might have fared better had he offered the cops one of the baked goods staff were spotted carrying. Full story

Yoga Crews Court Congressional Posers

Stressed out about not fitting enough relaxation time into your schedule?

Don’t sweat it. Yoga enthusiasts are preparing to flex some serious muscle on Capitol Hill.

Yoga Crews Court Congressional Posers

(Courtesy Congressional Yogi Association)

The LoveYourBrain Foundation plans to help staffers shake off work-related angst Thursday by offering a free yoga class.

The inaugural stretch fest, which is being put on in conjunction with the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force, is scheduled to take place in the park immediately behind Rayburn (sandwiched between C and D streets Southwest) from 1 to 2 p.m., weather permitting. Full story

April 14, 2015

Rep. John Carney Is #AllAboutThatBasin

The hit Meghan Trainor song “All About That Bass” is, depending on whom you ask, either a feminist rallying cry in praise of unconventional body types or an exploitative dirge objectifying women’s derrières. And now Rep. John Carney, D-Del., might be forever linked to it.

How? The song is applicable, apparently, to a certain parochial concern, if you just get take “bass” and get rid of the second “s” and add an “in.” To wit, on Tuesday, a group of bipartisan Northeastern lawmakers rallied  to introduce the “Delaware River Basin Conservation Act,” which would make the restoration and preservation of the body of water and its surrounding area a government priority. Full story

April 13, 2015

Lawmakers Lace Up Their Cleats for Charity Soccer Match

Lawmakers Lace Up Their Cleats for Charity Soccer Match

Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., will take the field once again. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ten members of Congress will trade their suits for soccer jerseys next week to compete in the third annual Capital Soccer Classic.

The game is scheduled for Tuesday at RFK Stadium in the District of Columbia. Though it is free to attend the game, donations from the event’s sponsors will benefit the U.S. Soccer Foundation, which encourages the growth of soccer in the United States, particularly in underprivileged communities. Full story

By Bridget Bowman Posted at 10:26 a.m.
Reps, Sports Desk

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