Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 6, 2016

November 12, 2015

No Hazard Found in Suspicious Vehicle at Capitol


The scene outside the Capitol. (Photo via tipster)

The scene outside the Capitol. (Bridget Bowman/CQ Roll Call)

Capitol Police investigated a suspicious vehicle outside the Capitol for more than an hour Thursday night, though nothing hazardous was found.

A source with knowledge of the investigation told CQ Roll Call there appeared to be a pressure cooker inside the vehicle, which was located on the West Front of the Capitol.  Full story

November 11, 2015

‘HillVets House’ to Bring More Veterans to Capitol Hill


(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Less than 3 percent of Capitol Hill staffers are veterans — and one group is looking to change that.

HillVets, which focuses on fostering veterans’ participation in government, launched a new fellowship program Monday to assist veterans who want to work on Capitol Hill and live in the District of Columbia. Full story

November 10, 2015

Capitol Worker Strike: More People, New Target One Year Later


capitol worker strike

Roughly 100 Capitol workers went on strike Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Last November, seven Capitol workers walked off their jobs to push for higher wages and a union. A year later, more than 10 times as many workers went on strike with the same mission, but a different target.

The seven original strikers from the Capitol Visitor Center marked the first time workers from the U.S. Capitol joined the push for higher wages. On Tuesday morning, roughly 100 workers from the CVC, the Senate and the Capitol went on strike, joining workers from other areas of the federal government to push for $15-an-hour wages and a union. Full story

Donnelly: ‘Heartbreaking’ Military Suicide ‘Has to End’


(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Donnelly spoke at the panel Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Maj. Gen. Mark Graham stood in front of the handful of people gathered in a Senate office building Tuesday and recited a phone number.

“855-838-8255. Don’t wait. Don’t wait. Call,” Graham said. He was listing the number of Vets4Warriors, a 24/7 call center where veterans provide support to service members and their families. Full story

Capitol Workers to Strike Ahead of GOP Debate


Sanders will once again join the workers at a strike on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanders will once again join the workers at a strike on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hours before a Republican primary debate, workers in the U.S. Capitol are going on strike and calling on the GOP senators running for president to help the workers who serve them.

Senate food-service workers and some cleaning staff are set to walk off their jobs Tuesday morning to call for higher wages and a union. The event is set for Tuesday to highlight GOP presidential contenders who, in the opinion of the striking workers, have been silent on the Capitol workers’ low wages. Full story

November 9, 2015

Honoring Veterans, One Story at a Time


The Veterans History Project has more than 99,000 collections. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Veterans History Project has more than 99,000 collections. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Americans will pause Wednesday to remember the nation’s veterans. But one Library of Congress project is working to ensure veterans’ stories are preserved for years to come.

The Veterans History Project is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year. It was established on Oct. 27, 2000, by an act of Congress, and over the past 15 years the project has collected more than 99,000 stories of service members. Full story

Critics Decry Capitol Police ‘Old Boys’ Network’


(Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A two-word email sent on the eve of the Oct. 10 Million Man March prompted Capitol Police to confiscate the gun and badge of a newly promoted captain, only to return both items on Oct. 13.

The incident is still under investigation, according to outgoing Chief Kim C. Dine, who credits the department with taking “swift and appropriate action” when employees misbehave. But a congressional aide familiar with the captain’s case said the agency’s “old boys’ network is attempting to make an example of a woman who has a reputation for calling out improper behavior.” Full story

By Hannah Hess Posted at 11:50 a.m.
Capitol Police

Alarm Prompts Evacuation of Capitol Power Plant


The Capitol Power Plant heats and cools the Capitol complex. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Capitol Power Plant heats and cools the Capitol complex. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Capitol Power plant was evacuated Monday morning due to an audible alarm in the boiler room, though police said there was no fire.

The Capitol Police command center informed CQ Roll Call that an alarm prompted the evacuation, though there was no fire in the room and everything appeared to be alright. The officer did not have more information and didn’t say what prompted the alarm. Full story

November 6, 2015

Paul Ryan Asked to Curb Congressional Travel


Ryan, right, and his chief of staff are being sued for $100,000. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ryan hasn’t traveled much during his tenure. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Speaker D. Paul Ryan should suspend privately funded foreign travel by House members and staff, watchdog organizations said Thursday in a two-page letter that asks the Wisconsin Republican to launch a formal task force to review travel rules.

“The amount of privately-sponsored travel, once slashed by [the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act] to one-third its previous levels, is again rising near to the level of the Jack Abramoff travel junket era,” the Campaign Legal Center, Common Cause, Public Citizen and others warned. Full story

Gyrocopter Pilot Douglas Hughes: ‘I’m Proud of What I Did’


Hughes to plead guilty to one felony charge. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hughes plans to plead guilty to one felony charge. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Douglas Hughes said Friday he plans to plead guilty to one felony charge related to his gyrocopter flight to the Capitol in April — but he is not ashamed.

The Florida man flew from Pennsylvania to the Capitol on April 15, to deliver letters to Congress pushing for a campaign finance overhaul. He was immediately arrested for breaching restricted airspace and later indicted on two felony and four misdemeanor charges. After several months of negotiations, Hughes is poised to accept a plea deal this month. Full story

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