It’s time again for Take Five, when HOH talks with a member of Congress about topics relatively unrelated to legislative work.
This week, Rep. Ami Bera, D-Calif., talks about the serenity of waterfront spots, as well as the similarities of two capital cities.
Q. What, if any, successes are you most proud of in your term in Congress so far?
A. I’ve only been in Congress since January, but I’m proud of the work I’ve done with my colleagues to start to create a sense of bipartisanship in the House. Our freshman class gets along very well, both Democrats and Republicans, and I think over time this class is really going to leave its mark on Congress. I’m also proud to be a co-chair of the No Labels Problem Solvers coalition, a group of members from both parties who are working together to try to break through partisan gridlock.
Q. As a congressional representative, you obviously don’t have “normal” work hours. Are you planning to take a break over the recess?
A. During August, I have several events planned in my Sacramento County district. Among the many things I’ll be doing are Congress on Your Corner meetings with constituents, a veterans resource fair and town hall to help our vets get the services they need, an event with local business leaders and our local Chamber of Commerce, and several back to school events. In addition to time in the district, I’ll also be traveling to India and Israel to deepen my understanding of the U.S. relations with these key allies and to promote trade and economic development in the Sacramento region.
Q. What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
A. I love the outdoors. I’m an avid fisherman and love to get out on the water when I can. I also love backpacking and going on summer backpacking trips. Most people also may not know I’m the only Unitarian Universalist in Congress and only the third Indian-American ever elected to Congress.
Q. Do you play or follow a particular sport or sports?
A. I played basketball all through high school. Now I golf and snowboard when I can, which is not often. And when I’m back home, I spend a lot of time swimming.
Q. What is your favorite place in D.C. that reminds you of home?
A. I love to walk along the Potomac River. Sacramento is the River City and there are many great waterfront spots in my district. Being on the water is incredibly peaceful and it’s one of the most beautiful aspects of both Washington, D.C., and the Sacramento region.