Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 4, 2015

Posts in "Nationwide"

May 4, 2015

Robin Kelly’s Version of ‘Cheers’

Robin Kelly’s Version of ‘Cheers’

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Robin Kelly plans to kill two birds with one stone Thursday — celebrating her 59th birthday (again) and raising some coin for her campaign coffers — during a little get-together at Bocce’s Bar and Grill.

Although the second-term Democrat already marked her actual nameday (April 30) in the office (“Staff did surprise her with her favorite coconut cake,” Team Kelly said of the vanilla-frosted, shaved coconut-covered centerpiece procured from Harris Teeter.), the suburban Chicago watering hole (3909 Lincoln Highway, Matteson, Ill.) got the nod to serve as host for a second round of festivities.

The fundraiser (tickets start at $29 per person) is scheduled to take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

Robin Kelly’s Version of ‘Cheers’

(Screenshot)

“Bocce’s is her ‘Cheers.’ She has celebrated many occasions there from her husband’s birthday to sorority events. But, really it’s the everyday normalcy of Bocce’s that she loves,” a Kelly aide told HOH about the congresswoman’s affinity for the local hang-out. “It’s her favorite place to go and spend time with friends and neighbors who’ve become an extended family over the years, people who know her as just ‘Robin.’” Full story

April 27, 2015

McConnell Records Radio Introduction for Derby Day (Audio)

McConnell Records Radio Introduction for Derby Day (Audio)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

 

Many Kentucky radio listeners will hear a familiar voice at the start of coverage of the Run for the Roses.

Over an instrumental version of “My Old Kentucky Home,” Louisville-based 840 WHAS is featuring Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introducing the news radio station’s coverage of this year’s 141st running of the Kentucky Derby. Full story

April 23, 2015

Former Hoosier Senator Teases Washington

Former Hoosier Senator Teases Washington

Bayh’s “important announcement” email caught Washington’s attention Thursday. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

When a retired lawmaker sitting on nearly $10 million fired off an email with the subject line “An important announcement” just ahead of the Thursday lunch hour, Washington took notice.

Former Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh is the biggest name on the Hoosier State’s Democratic bench — a name that’s been coming up a lot since GOP Sen. Dan Coats announced his retirement in March. Bayh’s been mum about jumping in the race, and with nearly every member of Indiana’s delegation showing interest in the seat, the contest has turned into a free-for-all. Given his name identification and the whopping $9.9 million cash-on-hand total Bayh retired with in 2010, he’d be an immediate front-runner should he get in the race. Full story

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

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

Iowa Will Not Be Ignored

Whether courting home-schoolers or kicking it live with hog castrators (the new hockey moms?), would-be POTUSes have had it beaten into their skulls that the road to victory begins in Iowa.

Those who don’t have the faintest clue why the Midwest enjoys kingmaker status can, this fall, get a crash course in early caucusing from Steffen Schmidt, a professor of political science at Iowa State University.

Iowa Will Not Be Ignored

(Screenshot)

“Dr. Politics,” as he’s come to be known after decades of closely evaluating visiting presidential campaigns, wants to help demystify the caucus process via a four-part online program.

The Web-enabled tutorial is expected to peel back the curtain on the history of the Iowa caucuses, the mechanics of the inaugural contest, how the media plays into the process, and what it will all mean as we are collectively dragged, kicking and screaming, toward Election Day. Full story

April 8, 2015

Shake It Up, Bustos (Video)

Think you partied hard this spring break? Rep. Cheri Bustos certainly attempted to rock her constituents’ world.

The Illinois Democrat Wednesday pounded the skins during a swing through a nursing home nestled in her district.

Bustos appears to bongo with the best of ‘em, keeping time as best she can while her co-performers chime in via guitar, tambourine and rain stick. Full story

Gary Kroeger’s Candidacy Is No Laughing Matter

These days, you are more likely to find funnyman Gary Kroeger poring over think tank reports than cracking wise on a late-night sketch comedy show.

The Saturday Night Live alumnus, who was cast mates with comedy legends Billy Crystal, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Eddie Murphy and Martin Short, is now eyeing a different TV audience to court: C-SPAN viewers.

Kroeger Tuesday announced his intention to unseat Iowa Republican Rod Blum, joining the mounting class of challengers vying to win their way to Washington.

Though he’s never held public office before — “I consider that a strength as I believe (along with many others) that in order to improve the conversation in Washington we always need new voices from the people,” Kroeger told HOH via email — the former actor is no stranger to politics. Full story

April 3, 2015

#HashtagWars Gets All Political

A social media challenge to come clean about well-known fibs wound up fragging political types across the ideological spectrum.

As he does most nights, talk show host Chris Hardwick put “@Midnight” fans to the test Thursday by proposing everyone own up to the mundane falsehoods that have become part of the fabric of modern life.

Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., who seemed to get a kick out of the assignment, used the opportunity to unburden himself of creepy tendencies. Full story

March 30, 2015

Solons Spend Spring Break at Replica Workplace

Lawmakers old and new spent the first day of a scheduled two-week recess taking in a very familiar sight: a carbon copy of the Senate chamber designed to honor “liberal lion” Edward M. Kennedy.

Everybody who is anybody (in modern politics, anyway) beat a path to Boston over the weekend for the official unveiling of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute, an organization devoted to preserving the legacy of the late Massachusetts Democrat. Some, such as Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., couldn’t help but take in the scenery.

Full story

March 27, 2015

Cyrus Clan Cusses Out Mike Pence

Braison Cyrus, younger brother of pop star and twerker-in-chief Miley Cyrus, has launched a campaign to have everybody on the Internet give Indiana Gov. Mike Pence hell for signing into law a polarizing “religious freedom” bill. Full story

March 25, 2015

Pwning a Piece of Presidential History

Following Monday’s conservative pep rally down at Liberty University, it’s obvious that 2016 GOP presidential hopeful Ted Cruz believes in himself. Personally investing in said product — or, at least, his online persona — is something entirely different.

Pwning a Piece of Presidential History

(CQ Roll Call Photo Illustration)

The tea party favorite might be the first far-right candidate to officially call dibs on moving into the Oval Office post-44, but as Web watchers were quick to point out, he’s way behind the curve when it comes to staking out online positions.

“Note to self, buy domain name before running for President #YouCruzYouLose,” instapundit Chris Weidel, who redirected social media users to the pre-occupied TedCruz.Com site, ribbed the Texas Republican Senator on Twitter. Full story

March 17, 2015

Illinois Republicans Bust Their Humps to Navigate Unfriendly Skies

“Being a member of Congress does not exonerate you from having to endure the same headaches the rest of us airplane travelers have to deal with,” an HOH tipster said Monday after witnessing a pair of time-crunched lawmakers hustle to make it back to D.C. in a somewhat orderly fashion.

Illinois Republicans Bust Their Humps to Navigate Unfriendly Skies

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Per our spy, the trouble all started when United Airlines declared that the plane intended to whisk Illinois Republicans Rodney Davis, Robert Dold, Randy Hultgren and Mark S. Kirk back to work was experiencing mechanical difficulties and would not be taking its leave of Chicago O’Hare International Airport at the regularly scheduled time. Full story

March 16, 2015

Members Succumb to March Madness

Ahhh, the middle of March. That time of year when the eyes of the nation turn away from anything and everything business-related and become locked on whatever electronic device is handy — TV, computer, smartphone — in order to keep track of that all-important commodity: one’s meticulously crafted NCAA bracket.

Members Succumb to March Madness

(Screenshot)

Politicos are not exempt from the collective obsession with the men’s basketball championship tournament. President Barack Obama has, for several years now, gone on record with his prognostications.

And plenty of sports fans on Capitol Hill — be they alumni of those on the hunt for a national title or proud supporters of the athletes they represent — love to trade barbs (and bet regional delicacies) in pursuit of ultimate bragging rights. Full story

March 10, 2015

John Lewis Bends Jon Stewart’s Ears About the Bad Old Days

Fresh off a trip to Selma, Ala., on the 50th anniversary of the landmark protest that would come to define his career in civil disobedience, Rep. John Lewis described the merits of “necessary trouble” to “The Daily Show” Monday.

The Georgia Democrat and graphic novelist regaled host Jon Stewart with tales of what it was like making his way through an alarmingly intolerant world.

“It is a struggle of a lifetime, of many lifetimes. I feel more than lucky, but very blessed that I’m still here to tell the story and try to inspire another generation of young people to get out there and push,” Lewis said. Full story

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