Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 27, 2015

October 12, 2012

Free Foie Gras … With ID Only

1789 toque Anthony Lombardo has a holiday treat for West Coast gourmands struggling with the newly enforced goose liver blackout: flash a California ID and feast on free foie gras.

Free Foie Gras ... With ID Only

(Courtesy Clyde's Restaurant Group)

Then-Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger signed the statewide ban on the controversial variety meat — People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals condemns it as the “delicacy of despair” — in 2004. But the mandatory disappearing act only took effect this past July.

Lombardo said he hadn’t given the matter much thought until a group of visiting Californians about lost their minds when they spotted the gustatory splurge on the dinner carte.

“They were just so visibly excited … to get some foie gras in their bellies,” Lombardo told HOH. Full story

Romney Faces Plagiarism Charge From ‘Friday Night Lights’ Creator

We noticed that Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign had taken to using a slogan from the “Friday Night Lights” TV and movie franchise.

Apparently, the writer-director of the franchise has as well, and he’s not pleased with it. Peter Berg is accusing the Romney campaign of plagiarism for ripping off the “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose” expression.

Full story

Sign Them Up

On which side might these anonymous suburbanites land when they enter the voting booth later this fall?

Sign Them Up

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Your guess is as good as mine.

Clintons Celebrate at Rasika West End

Clintons Celebrate at Rasika West End

(Courtesy Marissa Bialecki)

With the brunt of the D.C. reporting corps off doing its journalistic duty in Danville, Ky., former President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday night slipped over to Rasika West End to commemorate their 37th wedding anniversary.

Our tipster said the pre-eminent first couple popped by the tony Indian restaurant around 6:30 p.m. and spent two hours enjoying the fruits of award-winning chef Vikram Sunderam’s labors. Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 12:46 p.m.
Food

October 11, 2012

Tying One on For America

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Yesterday the “gang of eight” huddled on the grounds of Mount Vernon to hash out a last-minute plan for pinching enough pennies to save us all from fiscal ruin. One can only hope the group’s departure was not hindered by the onslaught of revelers heading to the grounds for a fete attended by hospitality professionals only too happy to drop tens of thousands of dollars on coveted hooch.

Several attendees told HOH the annual Spirit of Mount Vernon dinner and charity auction, which this year raised $250,000 for a George Washington-centric library and $100,000 for the Wounded Warriors Family Support Program, is easily one of the swankiest shindigs in town.

The 675 guests who made themselves at home on Washington’s lawn certainly seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

The Distilled Spirits Council kept partygoers well-lubricated, offering samples of up-and-coming liquors alongside unfettered access to every brand of liquid courage under the sun. The buffet of booze was both a curse and a blessing, giving even the most seasoned drinkers pause while they surveyed their high-test options and stumping at least two cocktail novices.

“I don’t know. I think you’re supposed to breathe it in, or something,” we overheard one tequila virgin mutter to her equally clueless friend as they wandered away clutching shots of Mexican fight juice.

Our tequila days thankfully behind us, HOH struck out in search of D.C.’s latest small-batch distiller, Green Hat Gin.

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

“It’s been a tossup between this and Bluecoat,” a barkeep said of the requests he’d received from the juniper savvy.

For the sake of parity we swigged a bit of both. Bluecoat American Dry Gin was initially bolder but had a medicinal finish, while Green Hat stayed mellow from gullet to gut.

“It’s a little too Bed Bath and Beyond,” one Bluecoat hater said of the boutique spirit.

Other offerings appeared reserved for admiration from afar.

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Unless you were willing to cut a giant check.

Guests were invited to bid on a number of historic beverages — “Drink more and bid often,” the MC prodded the cocktailing masses — including a pair of rare peach brandies crafted at neighboring Mount Vernon Distillery.

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Those beauties were snatched up for the tidy sum of $17,000.

But the biggest winner of the night had to be the penultimate bottle of George Washington Rye produced by the distillery in 2003.

Tying One on For America

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

That blended whiskey wound up fetching $27,000 — a handsome haul, even if the prized potable appears to have depreciated significantly in just a few years. (The first and second bottles from that same 24-set batch sold for $100,000.)

Our takeaway from the entire evening: Deficit-obsessed solons should stockpile as much top-shelf booze as possible, then invite the public up to the Capitol for the biggest open bar this country has ever seen. People are evidently real generous once they get a few in them.

The Shape of the Union

Dear geography buffs: Pennsylvania Avenue Southeast is the new place to be.

At least it will be today and Friday.

That’s when Brian Unger, the “Daily Show” alumnus-turned-host of History Channel’s “How the States Got Their Shapes,” is scheduled to troll the streets for folks who fancy themselves experts on the geometry of nation building.

The wonky show (airs 10 p.m. Saturdays on H2) delves into the origin of the 50 states, analyzing the lines that divide us yet bind us all together:

Full story

Killing Me Loudly

It’s a story as old as time itself: the campaign ditty that tugs at the heartstrings and propels that particular candidate into higher office (and beyond).

This post is nothing like that.

Instead, feast your eyes/ears on perhaps the two most misguided and totally inane political jingles EVER.

Full story

Who Wants A Mustache Prize?

One of Capitol Hill’s own has been nominated for the 2012 Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year Award.

Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Terrance Gainer has been nominated, along with 14 other mustachioed Americans, for the award. The winner will be announced at the totally real American Mustache Institute’s ’Stache Bash in Mesa, Ariz., on Oct. 27.

Full story

Bobby Baker’s Heady Days

Washington is replete with political memoirs, but few can stand up to the candid yet oft forgotten 1978 autobiography of Bobby Baker, which opens with an account of how he received protection in prison from Jimmy Hoffa.
Full story

Hill Staffers Root for One of Their Own

David Grosso, former chief counsel to Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), is battling to move from behind the scenes to center stage by running for one of two at-large seats on the D.C. Council.
Full story

October 10, 2012

House Administration Staff Has the Right Natitude

It’s official: No one on Capitol Hill will be working today.

Not because it’s kinda-sorta recess. And not because of any insane devotion to vice presidential debate prep.

Because it’s game three of the Nationals-Cardinals National League Division Series — and the first playoff game in Washington since 1933:

House Administration Staff Has the Right Natitude

(Courtesy Cloture Club)

Playoff fever has hit such a fevered pitch inside the Dome that House Administration Committee Minority Staff Director Jamie Fleet blasted out the following alert earlier today:

Responding to dozens on inquiries to our office, I thought it would just be easier to put out a note — the Nats will be broadcast on Channel 6 at 1pm.

Prepare for a long afternoon of not getting your phone calls returned …

Tortilla Coast Gets Vice Presidential

Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan’s former employer is holding a debate watch party, with full sound Thursday night.

Capitol Hill institution Tortilla Coast is famous for being popular with GOP staffers and for hiring the Wisconsin Republican when he was just a wee staffer in the 1990s.

Full story

October 9, 2012

Carolyn Maloney Sheds Light on Malony Address

It’s all a simple misunderstanding when it comes to where one can find the campaign headquarters of Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.).

As previously reported by HOH, Maloney’s GOP opponent, Christopher Wight, has had some fun with the address of Maloney’s re-election office, cutting a campaign video that states that Maloney is taking the election for granted to the point that no one’s manning the fort at her 2012 HQ.

According to a Maloney spokesman, Wight can call off the candidate hunt.  Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 3:49 p.m.
Uncategorized

Challenger’s Ad Can’t Find Carolyn Maloney, or Malony

If Republican House hopeful Christopher Wight’s latest video is to be believed, Rep. Carolyn Maloney is nowhere to be found.

Wight staff have posted a campaign video showing them searching for the incumbent New York Democrat at what they say is her Manhattan re-election office, only to encounter an unattended buzzer and cryptic note asking for packages to be delivered elsewhere:

Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 1:12 p.m.
Nationwide

Take Five With Rep. Doris Matsui

Take Five With Rep. Doris Matsui

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

It’s Tuesday once again, when HOH gets to know a Member of Congress through five fun questions. This week, we catch up with Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) and talk to her about barbecue, the Beatles and the Oakland A’s.
Full story

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