Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 11, 2016

Posts by Bridget Bowman

51 Posts

January 14, 2016

GOP Lawmakers: Presidential Race Won’t Set Our Agenda

Cruz, left, and Trump, right, are at the top of the GOP polls. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cruz, left, and Trump, right, are at the top of the GOP polls. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

BALTIMORE — As House and Senate Republicans gathered to plot policy here Thursday, they vowed not to let the divisive campaign for the presidential nomination set their agenda in Congress.

Rather than try to fashion measure that suits the crowded field of presidential contenders, GOP leaders said they plan to use the next congressional session to present Americans with their vision for the country. They hope their plan will eventually merge with the priorities of the Republican nominee and boost the party’s returns in November, delivering the White House and maintaining a Senate majority.

Full story

December 17, 2015

Gyrocopter Pilot Plans Run for Congress

Hughes plans to run for Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hughes plans to run for Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Florida man who flew a gyrocopter onto the Capitol lawn is turning toward a more conventional means to get into Congress: being elected.

Douglas Hughes, who pleaded guilty in November to a felony charge related to his April 15 flight, said he plans to run for a seat in the House, but is not yet announcing which Democrat he plans to challenge. Hughes faces a maximum of three years in prison with his guilty plea, which means he could be running for Congress from behind bars depending on his sentencing in April.

Full story

December 1, 2015

O’Malley’s Pitch to Be Second Choice

O'Malley met with House Democrats Tuesday morning. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

O’Malley met with House Democrats Tuesday morning. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has a message for House Democrats: Let me be your second choice.

“I asked all the members if I could not, today, be their first choice, I would like to, today, be their second choice,” O’Malley said after his Tuesday meeting with the House Democratic Caucus. “And I look forward to their support in the future.” Full story

October 6, 2015

Sanders to Talk Trade, Wall Street at Democratic Debate

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanders looks to go one-on-one with Clinton next week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., said Tuesday he is looking to engage with former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on trade and financial issues at the upcoming Democratic presidential primary debate.

Democrats vying for their party’s nomination will face off for the first time in Las Vegas, Nev., on Oct. 13. Though accusations of a fractured party are usually thrown at Republicans, the debate will likely highlight rifts within the Democratic party, and Sanders appears to be looking to utilize those divisions to garner support from the more progressive wings of the party.

Full story

September 9, 2015

Trump, Cruz, Palin, Conservatives Rally to Oppose Iran Deal

UNITED STATES - UNITED STATES - September 9: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump greets fellow candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, at a rally organized by Tea Party Patriots on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015, to oppose the Iran nuclear agreement. (Photo By Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Trump greets Cruz before the two speak at the rally on Wednesday. (Photo By Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Opponents of President Barack Obama’s Iran deal — led by Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz — rallied on Capitol Hill to show how they felt about the plan.

A veritable who’s who of conservative and tea party stars joined Trump and Cruz on stage to rail against the plan, and both Republican and Democratic leadership, who they say failed them. Here are highlights:

Full story

July 9, 2015

Florida Supreme Court Strikes Down Congressional Map (Updated)

Corrine Brown's district was at the center of the court case. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Corrine Brown’s district was at the center of the court case. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 3:05 p.m. | The Florida Supreme Court struck down a sizable portion of the state’s congressional map, throwing the 2016 elections into a state of disarray.

In a 5-2 decision Thursday, the court ruled the GOP-led redistricting process was “tainted” by partisanship and drawn to favor Republican incumbents. The Legislature has now been tasked with redrawing eight of the state’s 27 congressional districts within, as well as adjacent districts affected by the new lines. Full story

June 8, 2015

Van Hollen’s Former Staffers to Host Fundraiser

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

A number of Van Hollen’s former staffers are contributing to his campaign. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated, June 9, 7:30 a.m. | Along with congressional leadership experience and some high-profile endorsements, Rep. Chris Van Hollen has another source of funds for his U.S. Senate campaign: some influential former staffers.

The “Van Hollen Alumni and Friends” are hosting a fundraiser at Sonoma Bar & Restaurant on Capitol Hill Wednesday evening to benefit the seven-term Maryland Democrat’s campaign, according to a fundraiser invitation obtained by CQ Roll Call.  And the host committee list reads like a who’s who of former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee staffers from Van Hollen’s tenure as chairman for the 2008 and 2010 cycles. Full story

June 3, 2015

Kathleen Matthews Joins Race for Van Hollen’s Seat

Matthews introduces herself to voters. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Matthews introduces herself to voters. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The race to succeed Democratic Rep. Chris Van Hollen in Maryland’s 8th District became even more crowded Wednesday, when former Marriott executive and news anchor Kathleen Matthews announced her candidacy.

“I have spent a lifetime shattering the glass ceiling, advocating for women and children in all of my career work as well as being a strong fighter for human dignity, opportunity, as well as equality,” Matthews said outside the Silver Spring Metro station. “And those are the values that I want to bring to the U.S. Congress.” Full story

April 30, 2015

Sanders Presser May Flout Ethics Rules (Updated)

The Sanders press conference walks a fine line when it comes to Senate ethics rules. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Sanders Radio/TV Gallery press conference seems to skirt a fine line when it comes to Senate ethics rules. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 10:55 a.m. | Running for president is hard. But it’s even harder to do while balancing the ethics rules of your day job on Capitol Hill.

It’s a lesson Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., is learning the day after he told The Associated Press he’s running for president in 2016.

Full story

November 5, 2014

What Happened to the 10 Most Vulnerable House Members? (Updated)

election results

McAllister was defeated Tuesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 3:17 p.m. | Only two of the 10 most vulnerable House members will be returning to Congress next year — and both survivors are Democrats who withstood a Republican wave Tuesday night.

Seven other members on Roll Call’s list will not return to the House for the 114th Congress, while the fate of one lawmaker hangs in the balance as his race is still too close to call.

Full story

What Happened to 2014’s Most Vulnerable Senators?

senate election results

Sen. Hagan was defeated Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Three members on Roll Call’s ranking of the 10 most vulnerable senators will definitely not be returning to Congress next year, along with a slew of other incumbents.

The fate of two more senators is still unknown, but they also appear to be in trouble. Sen. Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., faces a difficult December runoff. Votes are also still being counted in Alaska, where Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, is trailing his Republican opponent by several points.

Find out who else fulfilled or defied their vulnerable ranking: Full story

November 4, 2014

Republicans Sweep the Senate (Updated)

McConnell won re-election. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call Photo)

Updated Nov. 5, 7:23 a.m. | Republicans swept the Senate races Tuesday night, and come January, they will control the chamber for the first time in eight years.

Democratic incumbents fell right and left, even in seats that they had originally been favored to win. President Barack Obama’s poor approval rating — 42 percent in the last nationwide Gallup poll — dragged down candidates across the country in the face of a Republican wave.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who cruised to victory in his own re-election, is set to become the next majority leader, with a gain of at least seven seats — one more than the GOP needed.

As results were still pouring in, National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Jerry Moran credited the GOP’s recruiting, encouraging and training its candidates.

“They are why we have the ability to deliver a majority, this evening, of Republicans to the United States Senate,” the Kansas Republican said. Full story

Roll Call’s Guide to Election Results

Join us Tuesday at 6 p.m. as we kick off Roll Call Presents: Midterm Elections 2014 as the first polls will be closing. You can follow along with Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni and Politics Editor Shira T. Center via the live stream below, and here is a handy cheat-sheet to keep as election results pour in.

As races are called, our CQ counterparts will publish New Member Guide profiles to help you learn about all of the new members. You can also catch up on election news and analysis by checking out Roll Call’s At the Races politics blog and the stories below.

Which races are the most competitive? We have Race Ratings for every seat. Spoiler alert: Republicans are (still) poised to pick up 6 to 8 Senate seats, according to the Rothenberg Political Report.

You can learn which lawmakers are most vulnerable in the House and in the Senate, bid farewell to the members who won’t be returning to Congress for one reason or another, or get to know these members in waiting who are already are on their way to D.C. thanks to uncompetitive races. That’s not to mention all of these 31 memberswho are running unopposed.

Don’t want to stay up? Don’t worry — here’s why Senate control may not be known by Wednesday.

You could ponder these 6 awesome scenarios Bellantoni wrote about in her column Tuesday. Or just click through all of these slideshows:

Roll Call on The Road to Election Day

2014 Campaign

Past Election Nights

Behind the Photos 2014

Mitch McConnell Photos

Mary Landrieu Photos

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Election Day Rituals: Movies, Meals and Mass

DCCC operatives posted winning campaign signs on DNC windows for good luck (Twitter photo from @JesseFFerguson)

At party headquarters on Ivy Street in March, a few Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee staffers gathered for a good-luck ritual: They posted signs from past special-election victors on windows — and destroyed the losers’ election mailers.

The occasion? The high-stakes special election to replace the late Rep. C.W. Bill Young — though Lady Luck would quickly turn on these staffers. Republicans came from behind to win the appropriately numbered 13th District in Florida.

It’s just one of many superstitious habits saved for an Election Day — and on Tuesday, politicians, operatives and consultants conduct rituals to calm their nerves until polls close and results are released.

Full story

November 3, 2014

The Other House Race in Louisiana

Graves is one of the top GOP candidates in the crowded race in Louisiana's 6th District. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Though the fate of the “kissing congressman” in Louisiana is garnering some attention outside of the Pelican State, a crowded race to the south with its own colorful characters is wide open — at least on the Republican side.

Ten candidates are vying to replace Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy, who vacated his seat to challenge vulnerable Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu. Among them are state lawmakers, a tree farmer and an ex-governor/ex-congressman/felon. Since the Republican candidates are ideologically similar, there is no clear GOP frontrunner heading into Election Day.

“I think you’ve seen that all of the candidates are campaigning as conservatives so it would be difficult to contrast any of the Republican candidates’ policy stances,” Jason Dore, executive director for the Louisiana Republican Party, told CQ Roll Call. Full story

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