Thomas McKinless

Congress is back and so is Congressional Hits and Misses
Week of Sept. 9, 2019

Congress returned from the August recess this week and lawmakers hit the ground running with “impeachment in drag,” Swiftie references and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s “beautiful, political face.” All that and more in the first Hits and Misses since Congre...
Watch: House observes moment of silence to honor 9/11 anniversary
Tribute marks moment of first plane hitting the World Trade Center

Welcome back Congress: Protesters swarm House offices

On the first day back in Washington after the August recess, Congress was met by protesters at the Rayburn House Office Building. The series of demonstrations organized by the Center for Popular Democracy centered around immigration, workers' rights, universal health care and notably affordable housing.

Why you should keep watching Iowa
Roll Call’s Bridget Bowman explains why Iowa is important, before and after the caucuses

How I spent my summer vacation: Congressional Hits and Misses, Recess Edition
2019 August Recess

Congress has been out of session this past month, but the madness doesn’t stop when lawmakers head home. Check out Sen. Bernie Sanders getting bested by a speed bag, Sen. Martha McSally showing off her dog on local news, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez playing with a penguin and Sen. Charles E. Schumer joining a game of ladder ball.

Flashback: Here’s what Comey said about the Trump memos during his 2017 testimony
DOJ watchdog says Comey violated FBI policies, but won't be prosecuted

Hinson on Republican Party and suburban women: ‘Words matter’

Ashley Hinson thinks she can bridge the divide between the Republican Party and suburban women. “I am one,” she said.

Iowa culture shock: Moving to the Midwest to staff a presidential campaign
Getting to know Hy-Vee supermarkets and Kum & Go gas stations

Former Rep. John Delaney has been running for president for over two years, and his campaign has had a presence in Iowa for much of that time. CQ Roll Call sat down with Gregory Christensen, a staffer for Delaney’s Iowa campaign team, to talk about the culture shock of uprooting from the coast...
The Iowa State Fair: Our hits, misses and lessons learned
Political Theater, Episode 88

DES MOINES, Iowa — For all its quaintness and fun, the Iowa State Fair does a pretty good job of approximating politics at the national level, be it questions about electability and charisma or trade and agricultural policy.

“The debate within the party that is happening right now, is happening right in front of me at the Iowa State Fair between these two people,” CQ Roll Call senior politics writer Bridget Bowman says, recounting a conversation between a couple after hearing South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg speak at the Des Moines Register Political Soapbox on Aug. 13. The couple, both of whom told Bridget they were impressed with Buttigieg, were torn between what was more important for a Democratic candidate: offering bold ideas or being more likely to beat President Donald Trump.

Former Iowa governor: Take rural voters seriously
Ex-USDA secretary helped 2020 Democrats shape their rural policies

Former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack helped devise a handful of Democratic presidential candidates’ rural platforms, including those of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and former Vice President Joe Biden, as part of his effort to boost Democrats’ appeal to rural voters.

‘Embrace it and take it all in’: Former Rep. David Young on the Iowa State Fair

Political Theater host Jason Dick sat down with former GOP Rep. David Young at the Iowa State Fair, where the congressman once worked as a teenager. Young is running once again for his old congressional seat, now held by Democratic Rep. Read more...
Tearing up the rules with puppets and Hendrix: Congressional Hits and Misses
Week of July 29, 2019

Senators made their exit from D.C. for the August recess this week, but not before tearing up the Senate Judiciary Committee rulebook, making carpe diem puns and dressing up in matching outfits.

Leahy tears up committee rulebook after Graham pushes immigration vote
‘Tear them up,’ the Vermont Democrat says

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham pushed forward a committee vote Thursday on an immigration bill, despite protests from the panel’s Democrats that he was breaking the rules.

Watch: Staffers leap from the Hill to the improv stage
Heard on the Hill crashes improv rehearsal with a few staffers

Heard on the Hill reporter Kathryn Lyons caught up with current and former staffers to talk about their not-so-secret second life off the Hill: as players in the D.C. improv scene....
Lawmakers stick to their scripts during Mueller hearing

Despite all the anticipation ahead of former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s testimony, were any lawmakers really going to change their minds?