Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
October 21, 2014

October 3, 2014

Pop Quiz: Roll Call Casualty or San Francisco Giant?

Pop Quiz: Roll Call Casualty or San Francisco Giant?

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As it turns out, there are two competitions that matter to the District of Columbia this fall. On Friday at 3:07 p.m., the Washington Nationals take on the San Francisco Giants in their first playoff game.

We figured it would be fun to test your knowledge on the Nats’ competition and the Roll Call Casualty List, our list of members who will no longer be serving in their current capacity (and perhaps drawing an obvious-yet-friendly comparison between the two while we’re at it).

Good luck!

 

 

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Congressional Hits and Misses: Best of Pete Sessions (Video)

Heard on the Hill continues its salute to members this week focusing on the Texas Rules Committee chairman and his love for America, microphones and cleavers.

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Jeff Duncan Psyched About Blitzing ISIS

South Carolina Republican Jeff Duncan has a little message for the hostage-takers and amateur videographers now known the world over as ISIS.

 

Jeff Duncan Psyched About Blitzing ISIS

(Screenshot)

 

Game on.

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October 2, 2014

Overheard: Being Biden Is a ‘Bitch’? (Video)

Overheard: Being Biden Is a Bitch? (Video)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Minutes after repeating his familiar warning that sometimes he does not know when to stop saying all that he means, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. let out quite a quip at Harvard’s Institute of Politics Thursday night.

When a questioner identified himself as the vice president of the Harvard student body, Biden chimed in, “isn’t it a bitch, I mean … that vice president thing?”

Full story

D.C. Watering Holes Embrace MLB Pennant Race

We’re still weeks away from knowing if #ThisTown could serve as the backdrop for a fabled “Beltway Series.”

D.C. Watering Holes Embrace MLB Pennant Race

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

But now that the Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles have earned their way into postseason play, local bars are gearing up for a very exciting weekend.

Thursday

Game 1 of the best-of-five series between the Baltimore Orioles and the Detroit Tigers: 5:30 p.m.

The Pug (1234 H St. NE)

The Atlas District mainstay has been doling out ballpark favorites such as peanuts, Cracker Jack and free hot dogs (!) for at least a week now.

 

 

Per Twitter, that generosity seems likely to continue while D.C. and Charm City remain on the hunt.

Reliable Source (National Press Club)

Fellow hacks can unabashedly root, root, root for Peter Angelos’ team within the comfort of the Truman Lounge. Flying Dog Lagers and D.C. Brau Pale Ales for $5 should ease the sting of not being in Camden Yards.

Now if only the NPC had an in with Boog’s BBQ … Full story

Pelosi Opines About Baltimore Orioles, Watching TV (Video)

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi could not resist the urge to discuss the MLB playoffs and her television-watching habits with the press as she was leaving her news conference Wednesday.

“Well you know my father brought the Orioles to Baltimore, … I’m happy to see them doing so well,” Pelosi said, referring to the team’s playoff berth and her dad, the late Baltimore Mayor Thomas D’Alesandro. “Because that’s the only TV I watch is sports. I’m not interested in anybody’s opinion. In fact, I don’t even listen to the commentator’s opinion. I just want to watch the score, and the team and watch sports that way.”

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Congress-Obsessed Twitter Bot Is a Gas

Many political observers turn their nose up at all the hot air routinely emanating from Capitol Hill.

 

 

The founder of a new oddball Twitter account, on the other hand, finds every peep that escapes from pols strangely intoxicating. “I came up with @FartForCongress on the idea that ‘passing votes’ and ‘passing gas’ was funny. I know, very immature,” FFC’s creator shared via email.

 

 

The creator of @FartForCongress didn’t set out with the intention of gleefully twisting lawmakers’ words into potty humor. Full story

October 1, 2014

Vote For Your Favorite Eric Holder Capitol Quip!

Vote For Your Favorite Eric Holder Capitol Quip!

The five finalists for this week’s caption contest are ready for your votes.

Using the comments section below, vote for your favorite caption until 5 p.m. ET Thursday.

Here are this week’s finalists:

  • Does anyone really want this ball?
  • Usually it’s not the ref who fumbles the ball.
  • Jump on it and we can run out the clock!
  • Possession is nine-tenths of the law!
  • Anyone have Roger Goddell’s number?

The cartoon with the winning caption will appear on this blog on Oct. 5th and in the following print edition of Roll Call. The contest winner will receive a signed color print of his or her Capitol Quip cartoon from the cartoonist, R.J. Matson.

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By Rebecca Gale Posted at 4:14 p.m.
Capitol Quip

Hi-Ya, Jim McDermott!

Glad to see Rep. Jim McDermott is all warmed up for the new Bruce Lee exhibit coming soon to the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience in Seattle.

 

 

The multimedia retrospective, which is projected to run from this Friday (VIP preview kicks off at 3:15 pm) until at least November 1, is expected to feature martial arts demonstrations, examinations of Lee’s personal poetry writings, and, of course, screenings of his ridiculously fun film roles.

 

 

The Washington Democrat’s pro-Lee plug, as first reported by CNN, is the latest entry on his mostly work-related Vine account. But this contribution marks the first time the Washington Democrat has donned a costume (from Lee’s closet in “Game of Death” and paid homage to by Quentin Tarantino in “Kill Bill, Vol. I” with The Bride’s duds) to get the word out about anything.

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Must. Stop. Ebola. Memes.

Now that the African-born Ebola outbreak has officially wormed its way onto U.S. soil, we must to band together to halt Internet pranksters from infecting our every social media stream with politicized takes on the deadly disease.

Never mind.

 

Must. Stop. Ebola. Memes.

(Screenshot)

Must. Stop. Ebola. Memes.

(Screenshot)

Must. Stop. Ebola. Memes.

(Screenshot)

 

Must. Stop. Ebola. Memes.

(Screenshot)

 

We’ve already lost that fight.

 

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September 30, 2014

Joshua Bell Performs Do-Over Concert

Joshua Bell Performs Do Over Concert

A lot more people stopped to listen this time. (Clark Mindock / CQ Roll Call)

 

Joshua Bell’s 2007 violin-busking session in the L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station is the ultimate urban metaphor, a reminder to keep an eye out for beauty in unexpected places.

And, while the performance seven years ago posed the question of whether a world-class musician playing, unannounced with a baseball cap, in a busy Metro station would get noticed (Gene Weingarten’s story on it won a Pulitzer Prize), the follow-up performance on Tuesday answered, intentionally or not, a different question:

If the Washington Post wrote a story telling its readers that a Grammy-winning violinist would be playing for free in Union Station during lunchtime, would anyone show up, and would any of them say that they definitely would have known if they had randomly passed said violinist at rush hour? Full story

Noshtalgia: Catching Up With the Globe-Trotting Pasty

Noshtalgia: Catching Up With the Globe Trotting Pasty

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

One of the most rewarding things about helping you, the loyal Noshtalgia reader, reconnect with cherished comfort foods (other than finding them or the most readily accessible analog possible, of course) is learning just how integral said memory-making-meals are to their respective communities.

I have heard, for instance, about the preponderance of mom-and-pop pasty shacks that supposedly dot the landscape of Michigan’s northernmost appendage. But having never trekked across the Lake Superior-facing stretch of the Wolverine State, I am unfamiliar with the iron grip the savory hand pies have on native Michiganders.

At least until Nick Sharkey shared his deep-seated longing with me. Full story

Navigating the New Orleans Tummy

NEW ORLEANS — Attention political professionals, journalists and anyone else traveling beyond the Beltway this election season: When in doubt, eat where the district director suggests.

In the case of the Crescent City, even a frequent visitor would benefit from the advice of Enix Smith, district director for Louisiana Democratic Rep. Cedric L. Richmond, who dished on his go-to plates.

Among the best sampled from Smith’s list was food far from the madding crowd: fried chicken wings at Manchu. A purple block building across from the I-10 overpass in Treme, Manchu’s signage states: “Food Store PH 947-5507 Chinese Food Beer Groceries Liquor Po Boys Sea Food Plates American Food Fried Chicken Wings.” It’s a place easy to drive past. Don’t be fooled.

Navigating the New Orleans Tummy

(Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

The wings were a delight and a deal: Crispy, flaky batter surrounding manageably sized snacks. Unpretentious, tasty and cheap. Digging a little deeper into the food world revealed a shout-out for Manchu from “Eat Dat,” a recent book by Michael Murphy. The author assembles a panel of city food judges to rank dishes, restaurants and experiences and invites the reader to compare his picks to theirs. Under “Where to Get The Best Fried Chicken,” Manchu ranked at No. 7, in close company with esteemed establishments Dooky Chase’s and Willa Mae’s Scotch House.

Navigating the New Orleans Tummy

(Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

Another highlight? Charbroiled oysters from Drago’s, a combination of flame-broiled oysters with an industrial-sized portion of Parmesan cheese, butter, garlic and parsley. It’s a unique, incredible mouthful.

Navigating the New Orleans Tummy

Alas, only so many meals can fit in a day. The rest of Smith’s list casts a wide net, and includes way-off-the-beaten path gems such as Castnet Seafood’s sausage on a bun. So those of you covering the Senate race down there, or working it, don’t be afraid to venture beyond Café du Monde and Commander’s Palace. In Richmond’s words, “When folks come to visit our city they definitely do not leave hungry.”

 

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During Recess, Congress Goes to the Dogs

With their tails wagging, Maya and Cash trotted around House office buildings Tuesday to raise awareness for a bill to protect pets of domestic-violence victims.

“If we could do this with all legislation, I think Congress would get more done,” said one delighted Hill staffer in Rep. Alcee L. Hastings’ office when the dogs came through the door.

Cash, a black-and-tan coonhound, had a blue pack on his back holding “Dear Colleague” letters urging members of Congress to support The Pet and Women Safety Act, sponsored by Reps. Katherine M. Clark, D-Mass., and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla. The bill expands protections to pets of domestic-violence victims and includes a grant program to incorporate pets into domestic-violence shelters.

The tall hound is a regular visitor in Clark’s congressional office and belongs to the congresswoman’s chief of staff, Brooke Scannell. “He likes to sit in on meetings,” legislative assistant Steve Thornton joked. Full story

‘Top Dog’ Trends Emerge

The mirth-makers at Fireside21 have once again thrust political pooches into the spotlight, rounding up some 30-odd photogenic pups for the 2014 “Top Dog” competition.

 

Top Dog Trends Emerge

(Screenshot)

 

Winston, the English lab belonging to Jon Corley, then-press assistant to Texas Republican Mac Thornberry, bested some six dozen pets with ties to Capitol Hill during last year’s inaugural roundup.

Other fan favorites included:

  • Most Competitive = Milton; House Press Gallery.  Breed: chow chow.
  • Best Hair = Lucy; Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky.  Breed: mini goldendoodle.
  • Most Likely to Succeed = Conan; Congressional Research Service.  Breed: hound/beagle.
  • Best Smile = Balto; Rep. Sam Johnson, R-Texas.  Breed: German shepherd.
  • Most Athletic = Banjo; Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy III, D-Mass.  Breed: border collie mix.
  • Biggest Flirt = Harley; Agriculture Committee.  Breed: worthless.
  • Most Regal = Lucy; Abled Americans.  Breed: dachshund.
  • Biggest Party Animal = Tanner; Rep. Bobby L. Rush, D-Ill. Breed: Yorkipoo.
  • Best Advisor = Pepper; Rep. Michael M. Honda, D-Calif.  Breed: Norwegian elk hound mix.

Although this year’s crop of dog-testants has only begun winning over the hearts and minds of the Internet-enabled public (the winner won’t be crowned until Oct. 15), certain prejudices appear to be steering early balloting.

People seem to prefer sparingly-used props — as in the case of the stress toy-chomping shih poo belonging to Wisconsin Democrat Gwen Moore.

 

Top Dog Trends Emerge

(Screenshot)

 

That seems to be besting overly-produced moments, a la the flag-draped westie put on parade by California Republican Ed Royce. Full story

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