Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
December 23, 2014

August 21, 2013

Trade Grub for Suds Tonight at Hawk ‘n’ Dove

Trade Grub for Suds Tonight at Hawk n Dove


DC101 is hosting a “Helping Hour” promotion from 3 to 7 p.m. tonight on Capitol Hill to collect food and other necessities for the Capital Area Food Bank.

Delivering a canned good/nonperishable item to the Hawk ‘n’ Dove will net you one free Samuel Adams draft. After that, the charitable minded will enjoy $1 drafts of featured Boston Beer Co. brews.

Afternoon drive guy Roche will be broadcasting live from the bar and will also give patrons the opportunity to enter for a chance to win a trip to Cancun (contest runs through Aug. 31).


August 20, 2013

The Perks Ted Cruz Forfeits by Dumping Canada

Red-blooded American Ted Cruz (at least on his mother’s side) has vowed to cut ties with his native soil, Canada, after learning that he most likely holds dual citizenship.

The Texas Republican’s hasty retreat from The Great White North might help smooth the path to a future presidential run:

(Jack Donaghy would be proud of you, sir!)

But it’s also going to cost him a host of opportunities.

Here’s a half dozen things Cruz has just kicked to the curb:

The Perks Ted Cruz Forfeits by Dumping Canada


Presidency, schmedency. There are no terms limits for the prime minister!

Full story

Alexander Opponent Stumbles Right Out of the Gate

Alexander Opponent Stumbles Right Out of the Gate

(Courtesy HOH Tipster)

It’s common knowledge that some tea partyers eschew scientific reasoning.

Senate hopeful Joe Carr has kicked things up a notch by turning his back on the “theories” advanced by Noah Webster.

Beste ohv luk wif yur kampayne.

August 19, 2013

Reid: MLB Should Let Pete Rose Into the Hall of Fame

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., thinks that Major League Baseball should lift its lifetime ban on Pete Rose and induct him into the Hall of Fame.

Because, of course. Reid loves talking about baseball. And he’s also from Nevada, where gambling is nbd. For those of you a little more #WGDB and a little less #MLB, Rose is baseball’s all-time leader in hits but is permanently banned from Cooperstown because he bet on games while playing for and managing the Cincinnati Reds.

Before a scheduled political interview with the Reno Gazette-Journal, Reid was talking up the Hall of Fame credentials of Ichiro Suzuki, when he dropped the bomb about Charlie Hustle.

“And let’s also bring in Pete Rose. He has been punished enough,” Reid said, according to the paper. ”He [Rose] has been [punished] for years. … He bet when he was a manager of a team. Games were lost. All that stuff. But he’s been punished enough. He is one of the great baseball players of all time. He didn’t take drugs, so yes; I think he should be in.”

It remains unclear whether Reid’s last indictment — “he didn’t take drugs” — was a direct shot at embattled New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez. But at this point, a shared hatred of that guy could be the only bipartisan bridge to avert a government shutdown, so maybe we’ll take it. But let us not forget, Reid is still the guy who makes political analogies on the Senate floor pegged to Davey Johnson being the best manager in baseball and that dude appears to be on his way out.

How Tipper Gore Helped Danzig Become a Household Name

Happy Birthday, Tipper!

The former wife of ex-Sen./VPOTUS/Internet “creator” Al Gore turns 65 today, granting her the full rights and privileges — discount movie tickets, early-bird dinner specials, carte blanche to yell “Get Off My Lawn!” until her voice cracks — associated therewith.

Then again, she’s been acting like a fuddy-duddy for years now: 28, to be exact.

It was nearly three decades ago that she birthed the Parents Music Resource Center campaign — a nanny-state effort to purge the world of offensive music that actually helped a number of underground artists, including horror-core front man Glenn Danzig, gain more mainstream attention.

Tipper’s crusade to crack down on certain tunes by branding them with the now-ubiquitous “Parental Advisory” label galvanized the music community, leading to a standoff in the Senate between lawmakers and a united front led by Twisted Sister singer Dee Snider, country legend John Denver and sonic iconoclast Frank Zappa.

The movement so infuriated Danzig, he wound up penning his break out song “Mother” — a thunderous indictment of authoritarian short-sightedness which helped catapult Danzig from “Headbangers Ball” favorite to heavy rotation on regular radio — about it. Full story

Cutest Dogs? Fireside21 Is Looking for Them on Capitol Hill

The ex-staffers behind Fireside21, a constituent engagement shop, want to give the furry-footed members of Congress their due via a new “Top Dog” contest.

The online competition pits congressional pets against one another in a virtual cute-off where he/she with the most clicks will eventually reap some VIP treatment. The top 10 vote-getters will be invited to a “Top Dog” reception — with complimentary dog bowls, ‘natch — scheduled to take place at 409 Seventh St. NW on Sept. 10.

Now, while we here at HOH remain totally impartial when it comes to pet-porn-related affairs, we would like to highlight (with possible superlatives) a few of the pooches that happened to catch our eye:

Cutest Dogs? Fireside21 Is Looking for Them on Capitol Hill


Most Put Upon

Full story

August 18, 2013

Plant Your Caption Here | Capitol Quip

Plant Your Caption Here | Capitol Quip

It’s August and members are back in their districts dealing with self-proclaimed “Birther Princesses” at town hall meetings and losing water gun races at state fairs.

Since you’ve heard it all before from these guys, send us your caption for this week’s Capitol Quip. Leave it in the comments section below. If you need inspiration, check out our compilation of how lawmakers have spent their summer vacations.

Editors will pick five finalists Wednesday, and everyone can vote for the winner until Thursday afternoon. To check out past winners, visit Pinterest.

By Emily Pierce Posted at 7:05 p.m.

It’s No Camel-ot Over There | Capitol Quip

Its No Camel ot Over There | Capitol Quip

Thanks to the many readers who contributed captions for last week’s Capitol Quip contest. Here’s the winning entry as voted by readers of Heard on the Hill, and in a rare August recess event, members of the Roll Call newsroom. (We had a tie and needed to break it. But we can assure you, employees were under no undue influence to pick any particular caption, and they voted via the comments section like other readers.)

The winner will receive a signed color print suitable for framing from Roll Call cartoonist R.J. Matson. Check out our past winners on Pinterest.

August 16, 2013

Domino’s Sends Proof of Halibut Receipt to Begich

How do you like them halibut? I guess OK, says Domino’s CEO J. Patrick Doyle, to Sen. Mark Begich, who called out the pizza magnate after an ad went after the famous Alaskan fish.

Domino’s posted a picture of Doyle with the fish sent to him by the Alaska Democrat in an “I <3 Halibut” polo shirt, which lord knows, they probably had to have made for the occasion.

The tweet:

Thanks again @SenatorBegich…usually it’s pizza for Friday lunch. Today, Alaskan Halibut. It’s “ofishal” – I love it!

7 Must-Follow Lawmakers on Twitter

The most interesting politicians on Twitter are the ones who show the most personality, which certainly creates heartburn for their press staffers but sometimes delivers amusing glimpses into their lives.

This is especially important during recess when lawmakers are home in their natural habitats, while the denizens of D.C. have little to do.

So without further ado, a few folks you should follow on the Twitter machines — because why not inflate the egos of senators and congressmen on a recess Friday?

1. @ChuckGrassley: The original best Senate tweeter. “Assume deer dead” is part of the D.C. dork lexicon, which is a testament to the strength of personal candor and our own nerdiness. But really, how else would we be able to see the biggest pig at the Iowa State Fair? No way else.

ChuckGrassley ‏@ChuckGrassley
Biggest pig Iowa StFair

2. @ChrisMurphyCT: Check out this tweet, bro. One hashtag, two words: #buttvine. Then jokes about said #buttvine here and here.

Chris Murphy @ChrisMurphyCT
Let thou who hast never sent out a pocket vine AND pocket tweet within two weeks cast the first stone.

3. @jahimes: The Twitter Robin to Senate Bro Murphy’s Batman. Or Something. This feed’s got it all! Ricky Bobby jokes AND pickles.


Jim Himes @jahimes
Stand back jack! Seizing on this overcast day to make pickles!

4. @clairecmc: Come for the 140-character opinions, stay for the baby pictures.

Claire McCaskill ‏@clairecmc
Pure Sunday bliss with my grandson.

5. @farenthold: No filter, no problems. I mean just look at this royal baby joke. Don’t you hear the “ba dum ch”  in your head? You do.

Blake Farenthold @farenthold
Congrats to Prince William & Kate on the birth of the #RoyalBaby. The baby weighed a little over 8 pounds. Or about $12.29 in US dollars.

6. @SteveWorks4You: The most HOH-documented Twitter feed for a reason. The “just let it happen” approach to social media.

Rep. Steve Stockman ‏@SteveWorks4You
He’s doing an impression of MSNBC’s ratings. MT @ktumulty I’m sharing the MSNBC green room with a deceased #olinguito

However, we would be remiss if we didn’t note that Stockman’s communications director, Donny Ferguson (@DonnyFerguson) ghost-writes most of Stockman’s tweets. So follow him, too.

7. @mocowan: No longer in Congress but still the best. Everybody likes Mo Cowan in real life. Everybody should like him on Twitter. #bowties

Mrs @mocowan (born in Brooklyn) just kicked it up a notch when Jay Z ripped into “Empire State of Mind”. #iaintmadather

August 15, 2013

Begich to Mediocre Pizza CEO: Stop Hatin’ on Halibut

Yo Domino’s. If you’re going to insult a fish while trying to put together a clever ad campaign, Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, would prefer you not pick on halibut.

The senator sent a halibut fillet and accompanying letter to Domino’s Pizza CEO J. Patrick Doyle accusing him of having an “uniformed palate” that led to his slight of the fish in the 30-second TV spot, “Powered by Pizza.” Given that Doyle is the CEO of Domino’s, HOH finds the likelihood of him having an “uninformed palate” quite high.

The ad, in case you have no desire to waste the next 30 seconds of your life, declares, “No one’s coming up with a world-changing idea over halibut. No way.”

From Begich’s letter:

“It occurs to me that your pizza preference may be the result of an uninformed palate, so I’ve sent you a delicious Alaska halibut fillet for your edible edification,” said Begich.  “I know you’ll enjoy this tasty treat and hope it will become the first of many fresh Alaska fillets you will feast on in the future.” Full story

Littlest Advice Columnist Arrives for Roll Call’s Hill Navigator

Roll Call Hill Navigator columnist Rebecca Gale announced Wednesday the arrival of her first son, Ezra Alan Margolies.

Dad, Warren Margolies, emailed to say that Ezra “joined the family at 10:28 this morning, weighing in at a lean and mean 6 pounds, 6 ounces.” Coincidentally, her latest blog item, “Wanting It All,” posted two minutes later.

Gale, who also serves as Roll Call’s op-ed editor, said via email that the little guy was very “punctual,” arriving one day before he was due. (HOH might suggest that seems more like being “fashionably early.”)

Gale, who will continue to offer advice to congressional staffers in her blog while on maternity leave, reports that she and Margolies “both liked the name Ezra and Alan is named for Warren’s grandfather. Next up in young Ezra’s life: his bris next week.” A big first week indeed!

Littlest Advice Columnist Arrives for Roll Calls Hill Navigator

Ezra Alan Margolies (Courtesy Rebecca Gale)


By Emily Pierce Posted at 1:14 p.m.

August 14, 2013

5 Captions on Egypt | Capitol Quip

5 Captions on Egypt | Capitol Quip

Since Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. visited Egypt earlier this month, the situation has clearly gotten more dire and dangerous for the people of that troubled country.

McCain and Graham encouraged the leaders of Egypt’s interim government to release political prisoners associated with ousted President Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood and to broaden political talks as they look to bridge the gap between the interim government and Morsi’s supporters. That obviously hasn’t happened.

So here are five captions to characterize the political situation in Egypt and U.S. efforts to calm it down:

  • You can lead a camel to water, but you can’t make him vote.
  • Geez, even Morsi got a better ride out of town than this!
  • I see the camel’s nose, but where is the tent?
  • Talk about déjà vu.
  • He wants to stay with his mummy.

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

The cartoon with the winning caption will appear on this blog Aug. 18. The contest winner will receive a signed color print of his or her Capitol Quip cartoon from the cartoonist, R.J. Matson.

By Emily Pierce Posted at 5:46 p.m.

Is This Congressman Sleeping?

The August recess gives members time to meet with constituents, spend time with their families and … sleep?

According to the Florida Democratic Party, that is exactly what Rep. Steve Southerland II, R-Fla., did Tuesday at a field hearing in his home district. The party posted this photo of the second-term congressman on Twitter:

Is This Congressman Sleeping?

(Courtesy Twitter)

Full story

By JM Rieger Posted at 4:49 p.m.
media, Reps

August 13, 2013

‘Odd Couple’ Rand Paul, John Yarmuth Host Charity Challenge at Valhalla

Sen. Rand Paul and Rep. John Yarmuth are certainly strange bedfellows, but the two will come together for a golf tournament next week.

Before the PGA Championship returns to the Valhalla Golf Club in 2014, the Louisville, Ky., course will play host to the aptly named “Odd Couple Challenge.”

The Aug. 19 golf tournament is hosted by two Kentucky lawmakers who couldn’t be more different. The Republican Paul is a tea party favorite, and Yarmuth is a relatively liberal Democrat. The event will benefit Helping a Hero, a charity that helps build accessible homes for wounded veterans. Festivities kick off with a dinner the night before in Louisville.

Valhalla features a Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course that opened in 1986. Next year will be the course’s third PGA Championship. It also played host to the 2008 Ryder Cup.


By Niels Lesniewski Posted at 5:48 p.m.

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