Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 22, 2015

November 29, 2012

Making the Most of #My2K

President Barack Obama has invited the general public to lobby on its own behalf, prompting average Americans to sound off about how allowing expiring middle-class tax cuts to careen off the fiscal cliff would affect individual households.

Making the Most of #My2K

(Courtesy White House)

The social media stunt — the White House reported there have been 132,000 (and counting) #My2K submissions since Wednesday — has stirred up all kinds of chatter on the Internet.

Obama supporters have taken to laundry listing what the projected $2,000-plus tax hike would slash from their personal budgets (tuition, mortgage payments, health insurance, food), while conservatives have seized upon the zeitgeist to air their own grievances (Benghazi, mandatory spending cuts, class warfare).

We’re most intrigued by those with very specific agendas in mind, including:

Political activists

  • @deeorumpshaker: @McConnellPress Otherwise, #my2k WILL buy me 50 Ditch Mitch yard signs & 100 2014 Ashley Judd for Senator t-shirts. Broker this deal, Mitch!
  • @metalmonster29: #my2k @SpeakerBoehner I live in Ohio. People ARE NOT talking nice about you! Would you like an application for Dog Catcher?
  • @MAblackliberal: #my2k depends on keeping @ScottBrownMA from becoming 2nd #masen – @MassGovernor will need to run if Senator Kerry picked for cabinet! #p2 Full story

November 28, 2012

Overheard on the Hill

“We ate lobster to live bagpipe music.”

A reporter describing a trip with Sens. John McCain and Mark Udall to the Halifax International Security Forum in Nova Scotia earlier this month.

Grover Norquist, Collector

Grover Norquist is a joker, a juggler and, apparently, a serious collector.

“I have a collection of whackers — things you hit people with — mostly from Africa,” Norquist told Mike Allen at Politico’s Wednesday Breakfast. “I also have a collection of airsickness bags from most of the world.
Full story

Conrad Burns, Persevering

“They talk about the golden years; it’s really rust,” former Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., quipped Wednesday, as he was being squired around the Senate subway in his wheelchair by Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan.

Burns and his wife, Phyllis, have been in town visiting their daughter, who lives in the area. According to Mrs. Burns, the former senator recently fell at their daughter’s home and hurt his wrist and broke a rib — hence the wheelchair.

Still, Burns appeared to be in good spirits and attended Wednesday’s Senate GOP Steering Committee meeting in the Mansfield Room.

The couple had intended to stay in town through Tuesday but apparently plan to leave early.

‘Tip’ Gets Top Spot on Capitol Hill

Last week, to mark what would have been Tip O’Neill’s upcoming 100th birthday, a pine oak tree was planted outside the Capitol. On Wednesday, the House voted to name a building in his honor.

Naming the federal office building at the intersection of Second and C streets Southwest after the Massachusetts Democrat wasn’t a hard sell for lawmakers: They gave voice vote approval to the measure jointly sponsored by House Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.
Full story

Paul Wellstone Memorial Brings Together Democrats

It’s been a little more than a decade since the passing of progressive pit bull Sen. Paul Wellstone. Lawmakers are marking the occasion Wednesday night by gathering with the Minnesota Democrat’s family and former colleagues to honor both his and wife’s life’s work.

The “10th Anniversary Remembrance Event” is scheduled to take place 6 p.m.-8 p.m. in Dirksen 106. The event is being co-hosted by Democratic Minnesota Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar.

Full story

November 27, 2012

Advocacy Group to Pig Out on Capitol Hill

EcoFriendly Foods, a player in the sustainable farming universe angling to join the advocacy game, has wisely chosen to recruit supporters for its new nonprofit arm via a “Launch Party Pig Pick” at Johnny’s Half Shell (400 North Capitol St. NW).

The official kickoff of the EcoFriendly Foundation is 1-6 p.m. Saturday; tickets to the all-inclusive event are $35 per person.
Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 7:56 p.m.
Food

Don’t Call 911: Gallery to Host ‘Explosion Event’

If you were walking on the National Mall on Tuesday, you might have seen a 40-foot-tall pine tree being erected on the north side of the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. Most people probably dismissed the giant tree as just another sign of the season — the Capitol Christmas tree was delivered Monday, after all. But the tree on the Smithsonian Institution property is a bit different: It’s going to be blown up at 3 p.m. Friday.

Full story

Andrew W.K. Undeterred by Administration Snub

Rambunctious rocker Andrew W.K. has decided he will not be party to all the disinformation being spread about him by the State Department, detailing the origin of his now-ill fated trip in an interview with HOH.

Andrew W.K. Undeterred by Administration Snub

(Screenshot)

As we reported yesterday, the “Party King” suffered a major buzz kill after D.C. bureaucrats nervously pulled the plug on a goodwill swing through the Kingdom of Bahrain. Government officials maintained that if any such invitation was ever extended, it was done without the prior consent of official Washington, and was therefore null and void.

“It’s possible that State Department spokeslady might not have known anything about it, but I find it hard to believe this whole thing went forward without some higher ups’ approval,” W.K. posited about a plan he insists was set in motion last fall. Full story

Naked Activists Descend on Boehner’s Office

Naked protesters demanded a meeting with Speaker John A. Boehner at his personal office Tuesday to discuss potential cuts to AIDS funding.

The Ohio Republican rarely, if ever, uses his office in the Longworth Building and instead spends most of his time in his Capitol hideaway. Naked or not, the protesters had a slim chance of catching a glimpse of the speaker. Or he of them.
Full story

Capital City Recognizes Pullman Porters

Washington, D.C.’s political establishment is giving the Pullman porters their due.

On Thursday, which is opening night of “Pullman Porter Blues” by the Arena Stage and the Seattle Repertory Theatre, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray will proclaim the days between Thursday and Dec. 29 Pullman Porter Awareness Month.

Leaving aside the fact that defining Nov. 29 through Dec. 29 is a little strange, it’s a sweet gesture and in line with the city’s long history of African-American empowerment. The story of the porters is one that reflects U.S. labor history, the civil rights movement and the rise of the black middle class.

Full story

Congress, Working It

Want to solve congressional inaction on Capitol Hill? Maybe lawmakers should work five days a week like most Americans.

Interested in easing partisan gridlock? Try being open-minded about other ideas and allow input from both parties in the legislative process.
Full story

By Emma Dumain Posted at 12:01 a.m.
HillSide

November 26, 2012

Garry Trudeau Shows CRS Some Love

“Doonesbury” cartoonist Garry Trudeau name-checked the Congressional Research Service, a government institution (barely) known for its sobering academic analyses, in the parting shot of his post-election coverage.

The award-winning artist stuck it to Republicans throughout the holiday week, showcasing a “math and science victory lap” celebrated by  those whom, presumably, did not support GOP pick Mitt Romney’s campaign.
Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 8:09 p.m.
Foolishness

C-SPAN Goes Deep

We can’t help but think that among those eagerly awaiting the return of Congress are our hardworking friends over at C-SPAN.

On Monday, as members of Congress were either packing for, or on their way back to, Washington, we checked out what the cable chronicler of all things Congress was running on C-SPAN and C-SPAN2, normally their purview being floor proceedings for the House and the Senate.
Full story

State Department To Andrew W.K.: It’s Not Party Time

If professional partyer and sometime musician Andrew W.K. still wants to share his message of “joy, excitement and positive celebration” with the Middle East, he’ll have to get there without any help from Uncle Sam.

The artist recently set the Internet aflame by unilaterally announcing his appointment as “a cultural ambassador of partying” to the Kingdom of Bahrain.
Full story

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