Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
December 22, 2014

Posts in "Campus"

December 16, 2014

Legislative Counsel Staffer Remembered as Funny, Positive

 Legislative Counsel Staffer Remembered as Funny, Positive

(Courtesy of the family of Ed Leong)

Edward Leong, 61, a staffer in the Office of Legislative Counsel for 36 years, died on Dec. 7 at his home in McLean, Virginia, after a nine-year battle with lung cancer.

“He was funny, caring, and brilliant,” said Sandra Strokoff, the legislative counsel of the House. “We work totally behind-the-scenes and he was completely OK with that. He was all about making sure that the legislation drafted was as good as it could possibly be.” Full story

By Clark Mindock Posted at 2:57 p.m.
Campus, Staffers

December 13, 2014

Surviving a Saturday in the Senate

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren arrives at the Capitol for votes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Cars packed the East Front of the Capitol Saturday, as senators returned for a surprise weekend session. Even as the first vote of the day was underway, lawmakers were still making their way back to the Senate.

A deal to avert the weekend session was so far along that a number of senators in both parties had already left the Capitol by Friday night. New Hampshire Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen, for instance, were already en route to Manchester when Ted Cruz, Mike Lee and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sparred on the floor Friday night.

Full story

December 12, 2014

National March Against Police Violence to End Near Capitol

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Protesters gather in front of the White House after the announcement there would be no indictment in the shooting of Brown in Ferguson, Mo. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The National March Against Police Violence, led by Rev. Al Sharpton, will culminate just outside the U.S. Capitol grounds Saturday afternoon, and the U.S. Capitol Police are ready in case the protest comes to the Capitol.

“Our security plans are flexible enough to allow us to modify them as necessary so that our security procedures in place maintain the integrity of the Capitol campus,” Lt. Kimberly A. Schneider, spokesperson for the Capitol Police, wrote in an email. “We’ll continue to maintain close contact with our law enforcement partners, including the Metropolitan Police Department and the U.S. Park Police.” Schneider also said additional staff will be on hand. Full story

December 11, 2014

Capitol Agencies Monitoring Budget Developments, Not Worried About Shutdown

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Capitol Police would report for duty even if the government shuts down. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As members of Congress scrambled to gather enough votes to avert a government shutdown Thursday night, Capitol Hill agencies were keeping on eye on developments, but were not particularly worried about history repeating itself.

During the partial government shutdown in 2013, the Capitol ground to a halt. With the clock ticking down Thursday, agencies were watching the House. Full story

By Bridget Bowman Posted at 8:58 p.m.
Campus

December 4, 2014

Veterans March on Capitol Hill to Bring Suicide Prevention Bill to Floor

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Montana Martin, a Marine veteran from West Virginia who served in Iraq, holds flags during the IAVA rally. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A group of veterans marched with American flags in hand to the Hart Senate Office Building Thursday to urge the Senate to act on a bill to prevent veteran suicides.

“Now we’re looking at December, the session is almost over and we’re trying to get this bill passed now before we have to start back at square one in January,” Kristofer Goldsmith of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America told CQ Roll Call. Full story

By Bridget Bowman Posted at 3:50 p.m.
Campus

December 2, 2014

Oh Ya! Capitol Christmas Tree Gets Lit

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The Capitol Christmas Tree is up and running. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Golden yellow hoodies dotted the West Lawn of the Capitol Tuesday, and a dark tree stood behind the children and adults wearing them. In the distance one could make out the white blur of the Washington monument through the cold mist that hung in the air.

After speeches from Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, Rep. Rick Nolan, D-Minn., and Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., among others, a switch was flipped and the 88-foot tall Minnesota white spruce glittered for the first time as the Capitol Christmas Tree. Full story

December 1, 2014

Ted Cruz, Ashley Judd and Others to Address Millennial Summit

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Cruz will address a millenial summit. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

More than 400 young people from across the country will descend on Capitol Hill Tuesday to hear how Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, actress Ashley Judd and other lawmakers will address issues relating to the so-called millennial generation.

“We wanted to send a strong message that bipartisanship for millennials is not reserved for the centrists or for the moderates … [It] also includes those on the far left and the far right,” Steven Olikara, president of the Millennial Action Project, said in a phone interview. “And it also reflects the strength of this movement to bring unlikely partners together in service of future generations.”

The Millennial Action Project is hosting the Congressional Summit on Next Generation Leadership, along with Nexus, a network of young philanthropists, and Children Uniting Nations, a nonprofit in Los Angeles. Full story

November 21, 2014

Capitol Christmas Tree Arrives on the Hill

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The Capitol Christmas Tree is hoisted from the truck for transportation to the West Lawn of the Capitol on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

All the way from Minnesota, the Capitol Christmas Tree arrived on Friday. Now, the Minnesota White Spruce just needs to be anchored upright, decorated head to toe and lit, finally, by Speaker John A. Boehner on Dec. 2.

This year’s tree traveled from the Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota with some companions from back home — thousands of handmade ornaments from North Star State children tagged along for the journey.

According to an Architect of the Capitol blog post about the tree, the tree was selected on a two-day trip in July by AOC Superintendent of Capitol Grounds Ted Bechtol.

The lighting ceremony will take place on Dec. 2 at 5 p.m. on the West Front Lawn of the Capitol. It will be lit every night when the sun goes down until Jan. 1.

Related:

Capitol Christmas Tree Lighting Announced

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November 20, 2014

Republican National Committee Headquarters Hit With Blue Spray Paint

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House Majority Whip Steve Scalise outside the RNC’s headquarters. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A vandal struck the Republican National Committee headquarters on Veterans Day, according to Capitol Police.

Around 7 a.m. on Nov. 11, a security guard spotted a young man spray painting a large blue “V” on the front door of 310 First St. SE, according to the police report. The graffiti was thwarted by the guard, who handcuffed the perpetrator and called Capitol Police.

Wilbert Henry Norton, 24, of Floyd, Va., was arrested and charged with destruction of property under $1,000, a misdemeanor. As a condition of his release, he was ordered to stay away from Capitol grounds, including all congressional office buildings.

The RNC paint job appears to be an isolated incident, though other buildings in the area have been targeted in recent months, according to sources familiar with the location.

Asked if there’s been an increase in vandalism around the Capitol grounds, the department provided statistics. To date in 2014, six incidents of graffiti have been reported to Capitol Police. That’s an uptick from five in 2013, but a decrease from 2012, when 10 graffiti incidents were reported on Capitol grounds. Some members faced vandalism in their districts that year, a backlash to passage of the health care overhaul.

In an email, Lt. Kimberly Schneider, a spokeswoman for the department, said Capitol Police “strategically deploy our assets throughout the Capitol Campus as part of our primary law enforcement mission to protect the Congress, the Capitol Complex, and the legislative process.”

Capitol Police work with the Architect of the Capitol to remove markings whenever graffiti is reported.

Kyle Trygstad contributed to this report. 

Roll Call Results Map: Results and District Profiles for Every Seat

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November 19, 2014

Capitol Dome Braces for Next Phase of Restoration

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Sen. John Hoeven discusses the dome restoration project. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

With frigid winds whipping around the 288 foot-tall Capitol Dome, Architect of the Capitol Stephen T. Ayers said the next phase of the nearly $60 million restoration project has begun.

Ayers told reporters gathered on the roof of the Capitol Tuesday that the scaffolding surrounding the Dome was complete, which he said was “a significant milestone.”

“The purpose of the scaffold is a very practical one,” said Ayers. “With its completion, workers are now able to access the Dome freely and can use the equipment necessary to begin the restoration work in earnest.” And those workers will be spotted on the 25 levels of scaffolding throughout the winter months, according to restoration construction manager Joseph Abriatis. Full story

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