Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 28, 2015

Posts in "Eleanor Holmes Norton"

May 15, 2015

Lawmakers Take D.C. Vouchers Debate to Local High School

Cummings and Chaffetz held a field hearing on D.C. vouchers. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cummings and Chaffetz held a field hearing on D.C. vouchers. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Federal lawmakers used the backdrop of a private D.C. high school to delve into the D.C. school voucher program and found themselves amid debate about the propriety of Congress’ role in local affairs.

The chime of school bells occasionally interrupted the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s May 14 field hearing at Archbishop Carroll High School in Northeast D.C. to examine the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program. The program’s authorization expires this year, and a partisan divide over education funds threatens its future. Full story

May 12, 2015

D.C. Officials Break Ground on ‘Capitol Crossing’

D.C. officials break ground on Capitol Crossing project. (Bridget Bowman/CQ Roll Call).

D.C. officials break ground on the Capitol Crossing project. (Bridget Bowman/CQ Roll Call)

Donning construction hats displaying a blue Capitol Dome, District of Columbia officials gathered under a tent adjacent to Interstate 395 Tuesday to break ground on the Capitol Crossing project.

The $1.3 billion project, privately funded by Property Group Partners, will install five mixed-use buildings over the next four years in what is now just air above I-395. The project includes housing, restaurant, office and retail space, as well as new interstate entrance and exit ramps. Full story

May 7, 2015

Not Your District PAC Increases Outreach, Efforts

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As Justin Robinson was scrolling through Facebook comments on a certain Maryland Republican’s page in December, he had an idea.

“This is great,” he thought as he saw the scores of District of Columbia residents commenting in opposition to Rep. Andy Harris’ push to block marijuana legalization in D.C. “But some staffer is reading this. [Harris is] not going to see it, or care.”

So the local DJ and restaurant server left his own comment, saying D.C. residents should start a super PAC and target Harris’ re-election. Then he said he realized that was actually a good idea. Full story

April 30, 2015

House Votes to Block D.C. Law

Norton said the resolution was "a double whammy." (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Norton said the resolution was “a double whammy.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In a largely symbolic move, the House voted mostly down party lines late Thursday night to block a District of Columbia bill that D.C. officials say would combat workplace discrimination.

A corps of mainly Republicans passed a joint resolution of disapproval 228-192, aimed at the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act, which dictated that employers cannot discriminate against employees based on their reproductive health decisions. Conservatives argued the act could force employers to violate their religious beliefs. Full story

April 23, 2015

Norton Rips Vitter for ‘Mean-Spirited’ Obamacare Probe

Vitter's attempt to subpoena documents from the D.C. government failed Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Vitter’s attempt to subpoena documents from the D.C. government failed Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., applauded a Senate committee for declining to subpoena the District of Columbia government Thursday, but not before saving some choice words for its chairman, Sen. David Vitter, R-La.

“Perhaps after having his hat handed to him by his own colleagues, Vitter will cease this mean-spirited attempt to deprive Members and staff of employer contributions to their health insurance premiums,” Norton said at the end of her lengthy statement. Full story

April 20, 2015

Norton Warns GOP: Don’t Tread on D.C.

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For the first time in more than two decades, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is set to take up a resolution aimed at blocking a D.C. bill Tuesday, to the chagrin of the District’s congressional delegate.

At issue is the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act the D.C. Council approved in January, which aims to prohibit workplace discrimination based on reproductive health decisions. Conservatives say the act could force employers to act contrary to their religious beliefs, violating religious freedom. Full story

April 16, 2015

On Emancipation Day, D.C. Reflects on Lack of Rights

Women dress in period garb for the 2012 Emancipation Day Parade. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Women dress in period garb for the 2012 Emancipation Day Parade. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Emancipation Day in the District of Columbia is a time for celebrations and reflection, but also to draw attention to D.C.’s lack of voting rights in Congress.

As public schools and local government offices closed Thursday to celebrate the 153rd anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln freeing the slaves in D.C., Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., noted Congress was still open.

“I sure wish we’d close them up,” Norton said at a prayer breakfast at the Willard Hotel. “Congress is particularly intent on doing great harm to the District of Columbia this year.” Full story

April 15, 2015

Calls for D.C. Rights Mount on Tax Day, Emancipation Day

Woodrow Landfair, left, and a man named David who declined to give his last name, sit along 3rd St., on the Mall while bound to a "liberty pole" as part of a vigil to draw attention to the District's lack of full representation in Congress. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Protesters attach themselves to a “liberty pole” as part of a vigil to draw attention to D.C.’s lack of full representation in Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

While April 15 might just be a filing deadline for most Americans, for D.C. residents, it’s a day when the words that adorn their license plates hit home.

“The slogan ‘taxation without representation’ is something you would hope had perished with the end of the Revolutionary War, but it still applies today to the 650,000 Americans who call the District of Columbia home,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., said in a statement Wednesday. “We feel our status as lesser citizens especially on April 15.” Full story

April 14, 2015

Congress Looks to Act on Blocking D.C. Bills

Black introduced a resolution Monday to block a D.C. bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Black introduced a resolution Monday to block a D.C. bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Congress has some more time to deal with two District of Columbia bills that have caused some backlash from lawmakers, but the clock is ticking.

The two bills in question are the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act and the Human Rights Amendment Act, which the D.C. government approved in January. Some Republican lawmakers say the bills violate religious freedom and introduced disapproval resolutions in the House and Senate aimed at blocking the bills. Full story

April 1, 2015

Senate GOP Presidential Hopefuls Take On D.C.

Cruz, left, and Rubio, right, both introduced measures targeting D.C. laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cruz, left, and Rubio, right, both introduced measures targeting D.C. laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In the course of eight days, two Senate Republicans eyeing the presidency introduced measures to strike down District of Columbia laws, causing local officials and activists to accuse them of using the District for their own political gain.

“I think it’s no accident that both of these senators just before announcing [their interest in running for president], try to use the District as the fallback for their base,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., said in a March 27 phone interview. “It’s not as if we have the right to keep people interfering with our local laws. So why not pick on us?” Full story

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