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August 30, 2015

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April 27, 2015

House Aide Saves ‘Black-ish’ Star From Embarrassment

Perhaps Lewis' heroism inspired Aydin over the weekend. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Perhaps Lewis’ heroism inspired Aydin over the weekend. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democratic staffer-turned-graphic artist Andrew Aydin graduated to full-fledged superhero over the weekend, swooping in to extract “Black-ish” actress Tracee Ellis Ross from a ridiculously sticky situation.

The gallantry unfolded right in front of HOH as the two passing acquaintances — “Congressman [John] Lewis and I met Ms. Ross in Chicago when we were all on ‘Windy City Live’ on the same day,” the House aide shared, providing a peek into the star-studded alliance he’s cultivated since helping to pen the Georgia Democrat’s autobiographical graphic novel, “March” — exchanged pleasantries during a White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner shindig.

Full story

April 25, 2015

In the Trenches with Chris Johnson: WHCD Edition

With all the haters throwing shade at the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, HOH couldn’t help but wonder whether any of our fellow reporting brethren still get anything (other than a vicious hangover) out of the booze-soaked weekend.

Sure, critics are convinced the event has devolved into an orgy of media one-upmanship. And the crush of celebvocates paraded around at corporate-sponsored parties does tend to steal most of the thunder from the actual journalists being feted.

Then again, sometimes one simply must embrace the absurdity of it all.

At least that’s what Chris Johnson, the White House reporter for the Washington Blade, did a few years back when he came face to face with former Sen. Rick Santorum.

(Courtesy Chris Johnson)

(Courtesy Chris Johnson)

Full story

April 24, 2015

Prayer Warriors Want WHCD Refocused on Community Service

Pray at the Pump founder Rocky Twyman Friday plans to put the screws to all the revelers floating around #ThisTown for the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner by publicly petitioning President Barack Obama to prod the host journalists and visiting celebrities to pursue more worthwhile causes.

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“Special prayers will be offered for our partying White House correspondents whose news organizations are spending millions on impressing Hollywood stars instead of using money for investigative stories that impact the nation,” Twyman said in a release announcing his intention to picket outside the White House from 1 p.m. to 3 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.

(Courtesy Mother Nature Network)

(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

March 16, 2015

Maine Pols Think Tom Moser Might Just Make It in D.C.

Maine Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins are slated to help christen Thursday the latest showplace carved out by artisan furniture maker Tom Moser.

A one-time college professor turned full-time craftsman — “He was a professor of rhetoric, of all things, at Bates [College],” King told HOH — Moser has built a second career for himself by creating highly coveted conversation pieces for the home and office.

Collins and King are tentatively scheduled to attend the ribbon cutting at his new shop (1028 33rd St. NW) Thursday from 6:30-9 p.m. The invitation-only affair is expected to feature  “Made in America” tasting stations, specialty drinks and the opportunity to win a limited edition, hand-signed American flag cobbled together from different woods (Maine maple for the white stripes, Pennsylvania cherry for the red stripes and Missouri black walnut for the background to the stars). Full story

February 4, 2015

Novelty Bourbon Delivery an Uncompromising Success

Lawmakers from across the Capitol poured into the Willard Hotel Tuesday to honor the unique flavor bourbon has contributed to Congress.

UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 3: Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, chats with Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., during the Bourbon Barrel of Compromise reception at the Willard Hotel in Washington on Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015. The Henry Clay Center for Statesmanship and the Kentucky Distillers Association joined forces to send a barrel of Kentucky Bourbon to Washington D. C. to be received by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Speaker John A. Boehner shares a laugh with Rep. John Yarmuth. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The feel-good presser was the brainchild of the Henry Clay Center for Statesmanship and the Kentucky Distillers’ Association; the former provided historical context while the latter kept the predominantly Southern crowd in good spirits.

UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 3: One of the bartenders pours some Town Branch bourbon for a guest at the Bourbon Barrel of Compromise Reception at the Willard Hotel in Washington on Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015. The Henry Clay Center for Statesmanship and the Kentucky Distillers Association joined forces to send a barrel of Kentucky Bourbon to Washington D. C. to be received by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

(Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Full story

February 2, 2015

Symbolic Bourbon Barrels Toward D.C.

It may not be happening in the Oval Office, but master distillers from Kentucky are making their way to Washington Tuesday to supply Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell with a self-styled bourbon summit.

The participating purveryors, working in conjunction with the Henry Clay Center for Statesmanship, loaded up the “Bourbon Barrel of Compromise” in Lexington, Ky., Monday and sent it on its way to D.C. for a planned reception/tasting event scheduled to take place at the historic Willard Hotel.

“It was a bourbon geek moment,” Kentucky Distillers’ Association President Eric Gregory said of the intoxicating feeling of watching the commemorative cask roll out on route to the nation’s capital. Full story

January 16, 2015

Laser Cat May Just Take Your Breath Away

Follow Friday. Feline Friday. Whatever you want to call our weekly tumble down virtual rabbit holes, there’s no escaping the fact that you MUST pledge allegiance to Laser Cat.

An amalgamation of music, art and animatronics, Laser Cat is scheduled to shower Yards Park with all kinds of visual funkiness next month. The eye-catching experiment, which has so far been nurtured by the Barcelona-based visionaries known as Hungry Castle and the Art Directors Club, thrives on a steady diet of fan-submitted art, fun-loving DJs and global destinations.

⚡️ Laser Cat Brooklyn ⚡️ from Hungry Castle on Vimeo.

Full story

January 6, 2015

Members Party Down on the First Day of New Session

Having already posed for the obligatory pictures, placed their hands on the good book and weathered a nail-biter of a leadership challenge (Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, voted for … himself! Newcomer Curt Clawson, R-Fla., endorsed … Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul), the members of the 114th Congress dove right into what #ThisTown does best: schmoozing.

Six-term Sen. Charles. E. Grassley wandered across the Capitol to greet incoming delegation member Rod Blum, but just missed his newly minted colleague.

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

“I’m going to go find out where my boss is right now,” a Blum aide assured the senior Iowa Republican. Full story

December 16, 2014

Eleanor Holmes Norton Hosts 25th Annual Kids’ Holiday Party

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., will once again open up the halls of Congress to the District’s disadvantaged youth on Wednesday, injecting some cheer into the holiday season by hosting her annual Capitol Hill Holiday Party.

(Tom WIlliams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The festive gathering, scheduled to take place in 345 Cannon from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., is being put on in conjunction with the UPO Inspire Foundation, a charitable organization that works to empower local families. According to Team Norton, this year’s gathering will feature gifts for the attending children as well as a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus.

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

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December 15, 2014

Congressional Hits and Misses: Week of Dec. 8 (Video)

With holiday jet fumes in the air, Congress spent its final full week of 2014 on “The Colbert Report,” strategizing for bar fights and telling their favorite Dick Cheney quail hunting stories.

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

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December 2, 2014

Booze Crews Toast Mark Amodei, Linda Sánchez

Sanchez will be toasted for her bipartisanship. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanchez will be toasted for her bipartisanship. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Beverage slingers are raising their glasses to Reps. Mark Amodei, R-Nev., and Linda T. Sánchez, D-Calif., for being so darn agreeable.

The House lawmakers have been named the 2014 Congressional Bipartisanship Honorees by Constellation Brands. According to an organizer for a Beer Institute-hosted event that will fete the duo, the two got the nod  “for their willingness to engage constructively and respectfully with members of the opposing party.”

A commendable trait, to be sure — even if their respective voting records don’t seem to reflect said open-mindedness. Full story

Overheard: Sink or Swim With Joe Manchin

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“We go out in the middle of the Potomac, and that way nobody can jump or swim. They’ve gotta talk.”

— West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III shares the secret to the bipartisan shindigs held aboard his houseboat on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

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November 26, 2014

Illinoisans Invited to Toast Statehood Day

The Illinois State Society is throwing down on Dec. 3 in the Capitol Visitor Center for Illinois Statehood Day. And any Land of Lincolners looking to get their Prairie State on are welcome to partake.

Illinois Republican Sen. Mark S. Kirk is expected to host the reception, which is scheduled to take place from 6 to 8 p.m. in HVC 201.

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cmdr. Jess Porter, future skipper of the USS Illinois — a nuclear submarine in the making — is slotted to be the guest of honor. Kirk is a former Naval reservist himself.

If you hail from the state, or work for someone who does, register now (via the Illinois State Society page) to enjoy free food and drink.

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November 17, 2014

John Dingell, Carl Levin to Be Honored With LBJ Award

Rep. John D. Dingell speaks with reporters (File Photo by Bill Clark/ CQ Roll Call)

Dingell, left, will be honored along with longtime colleague Levin. (Bill Clark/ CQ Roll Call)

Fifty years ago, Rep. John D. Dingell stood next to President Lyndon B. Johnson as he signed the Civil Rights Act. He had already clocked in nearly a decade in the House at that point.

On Tuesday, Dingell and his longtime Michigan colleague, Democratic Sen. Carl Levin, will be honored with the LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award from the Lyndon B. Johnson Foundation for years of public service in the name of the Texas POTUS’ legacy of civil rights.

Put together, the two Democratic lawmakers have more than nine decades of experience representing the Wolverine State in Washington.

Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress in history, was elected in 1955 and is retiring at the end of this year. His wife, Rep.-elect Debbie Dingell, will take his seat in the new Congress.

Levin was elected in 1978 and will retire at the end of the 113th Congress as well.

“I consider my votes to advance the Civil Rights movement throughout the ’50s and ’60s among the most important votes I’ve cast in my 58 years in the House of Representatives,” Dingell said in a statement.

Levin, who said driving a taxi during law school helped introduce him to people from diverse backgrounds, served as general counsel for the Michigan Civil Rights Commission in the ’60s. The foundation cited his support of reauthorizing the Voting Rights Act and his stance on “don’t ask, don’t tell” military policies as modern-day civil rights achievements.

The award ceremony will be held Tuesday at the Newseum. Bob Schieffer of CBS will be the master of ceremonies. Proceeds will go toward the LBJ School of Public Affairs Washington Center.

Nineteen members of Congress and one representative-elect are expected to attend, including the two honorees. The list includes Debbie Dingell; Levin’s brother, Rep. Sander M. Levin, D-Mich.; Sens. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.; Jack Reed, D-R.I.; Bill Nelson, D-Fla.; and Mazie K. Hirono, D-Hawaii, and Reps. John Lewis, D-Ga.; Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas; Joaquin Castro, D-Texas; Charles B. Rangel, D-N.Y.; Corrine Brown, D-Fla.; Paul Tonko, D-N.Y.; Barbara Lee, D-Calif.; Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Texas; Steven Horsford, D-Nev.; Gene Green, D-Texas; Dan Kildee, D-Mich.; and Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer, D-Md.

Related:

John Dingell to Receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

The Dean John Dingell’s Office on Display

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