Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
January 31, 2015

Posts in "Members of Congress"

January 30, 2015

5 Potential Scenarios for D.C.’s Marijuana Initiative

What's next for marijuana in D.C.? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

What’s next for marijuana in D.C.? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The ongoing battle over the District of Columbia’s marijuana policy is currently at a standstill, but several scenarios over the coming weeks could alter its fate.

In November, 70 percent of D.C. voters approved Initiative 71, legalizing the possession and cultivation of small amounts of marijuana. But Congress moved to block the initiative by attaching a rider to the year-end spending package barring federal and local funds from being used “to enact any law, rule, or regulation to legalize or reduce penalties associated with the possession, use or distribution.” Full story

January 29, 2015

Congress’ Top Travelers Say Globetrotting on Private Dime Essential

McDermott says Congress needs to travel to do its job more effectively. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

McDermott says Congress needs to travel to do its job more effectively. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

As one of the top travelers in Congress, Colorado Democrat Diana DeGette likes to give this advice to incoming House freshmen: “Pick one or two countries and really get deeply involved in the politics and culture.”

For DeGette, that nation is Japan. The lawmaker, who was born in Tachikawa, explained her “long cultural and personal connection” in a recent interview. “My district, in Denver, has a huge business and cultural connection to Japan,” she said, adding that the head of the local chamber of commerce is excited by the ties. Full story

January 27, 2015

Bowser Talks Marijuana, Statehood With Boehner

Bowser, left, was among the mayors discussing policy at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Bowser, left, was among the mayors discussing policy at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser headed to Capitol Hill Tuesday to discuss local  issues with lawmakers, including Speaker John A. Boehner.

Bowser said her goal was to introduce herself to the lawmakers and foster communication between Capitol Hill and the mayor’s office. Full story

Conviction of Reid Bundler Upheld, Next Stop: SCOTUS?

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A prominent Nevada lobbyist convicted of making illegal contributions to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s 2010 re-election campaign is preparing to ask the Supreme Court to revisit campaign finance limits, following a Monday federal appeals court decision.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the convictions of F. Harvey Whittemore, 62, of Reno, Nev., for two counts of violating federal campaign finance law, and one count of causing a materially false statement to be made to the Federal Election Commission. Reid was not accused of any wrongdoing in the case, though the Nevada Democrat was required to amend his campaign finance reports. Full story

January 26, 2015

White House Drone Raises Questions About D.C., Capitol Policy

Sen. Leahy brings a drone to a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in March. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Patrick J. Leahy brought a drone to a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in March. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A small drone found on the White House lawn caused some lawmakers to question the Federal Aviation Administration’s drone policy in the District of Columbia Monday.

“The Secret Service cannot handle the threat of drones without further Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations that update the interpretation of the no-fly zone to include such unmanned aircraft,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., said in a statement Monday. Full story

January 23, 2015

U.S. Conference of Mayors Moving Past Congressional Gridlock

Bowser, left, was among the mayors discussing policy at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Bowser, left, was among the mayors discussing policy at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Mayors from across the nation have a message for Congress: Gridlock means mayors have had to pick up the slack.

Nearly 300 mayors from across the country, and from both parties, descended on the District of Columbia following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address for the 83rd annual U.S. Conference of Mayors’ winter meeting. Up for discussion in particular were new ways federal and local governments can get things done. Full story

January 22, 2015

Lawmakers Define Oversight Role in L’Enfant Metro Incident

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Members of Congress are looking to flex their oversight muscles, after summoning national and local transportation officials to Capitol Hill on Wednesday evening to brief them on the recent deadly incident at the L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station.

Although the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating and the D.C. government is becoming involved, members of the capital region delegation insisted they, too, have a role to play.

Full story

January 15, 2015

Chaffetz Allowed to Move Oversight Chairmen Portraits

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Chaffetz, right, took the portrait of Issa, left, off the walls of the Oversight and Government Reform panel’s hearing room. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The walls of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee room were bare Thursday afternoon, with a handful of tiny holes where portraits of past committee chairmen once hung.

Reports that new Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, took down the committee chairmen portraits had the gossip mill buzzing Thursday. The Hill first reported the news, along with comments from disgruntled staffers who took the move as a swipe at former Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif. Issa’s portrait had only been hanging since mid-November before it was moved out of the room. Though the Office of the Clerk is responsible for displaying works of art on the House side of the Capitol, Chaffetz is allowed to move the paintings. According to an aide with the House Administration Committee, the chairman controls the committee room decor. Full story

January 14, 2015

Lawmakers Demand Answers About Deadly L’Enfant Metro Incident (Updated)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 4:14 p.m. | The deadly incident at the L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station Monday has raised questions about the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s emergency response procedures, and has some members of Congress demanding answers.

On Monday afternoon, a Yellow Line train from L’Enfant Plaza came to a halt inside the tunnel and the train and tunnel filled with smoke, killing one woman and hospitalizing dozens more.  In the wake of the accident, federal lawmakers from the capital region were demanding answers, and they could have more details on the National Transportation Safety Board’s investigation next week. Full story

January 13, 2015

Ohio Country Club Bartender Indicted After Threatening to Poison Boehner

Boehner's bartender  plotted to poison his wine, federal agents say. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Boehner’s bartender plotted to poison his wine, federal agents say. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

An Ohio man who served drinks to Speaker John A. Boehner at his country club was indicted Jan. 7 on charges he threatened to kill the House’s top Republican — by poisoning his wine.

Michael Robert Hoyt, 44, known to patrons as “Bartender Mike,” was arrested on Oct. 29 by police in Deer Park, Ohio, a Cincinnati suburb that is outside Boehner’s district, approximately a week after losing his job at the Wetherington Golf and Country Club in West Chester, Ohio. Documents filed in D.C. Superior Court, first reported by local TV station WCPO Cincinnati, lay out Hoyt’s alleged plot to kill Boehner, who he believed was “the devil.” Full story

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