Clark Mindock

Take Five: Ted Lieu

It’s time again for Take Five, when HOH talks with a member of Congress about topics relatively unrelated to legislative work.  

This week, Rep.-elect Ted Lieu, D-Calif., House Democrats' freshman class president, talks about his turbo technology, hotel points and celebrities in prison. Q. What was your first car? Any great memories of it? A. It was a Ford Thunderbird Turbo. It was a black and ... the inside was red, and it looked really cool.  

Take Five: Rep. Mimi Walters

It’s time again for Take Five, when HOH  talks with a member of Congress about topics relatively unrelated to legislative work.  

This week Rep. Mimi Walters, R-Calif., talks about boogie boarding, heading to Mammoth and a few of her favorite things. Q. What's your favorite activity to fill your free time in your district? A. I’m a mom of four kids. My last one just went off to college. My days have been pretty filled with my duties as a California state senator, so I don’t have the luxury of a lot of free time.  

Boehner Leaves Door Open on Gas Tax Proposal (Video)

A renewed push by some Democrats for an increase in the federal gas tax to replenish the Highway Trust Fund drew a frosty reception Thursday from Speaker John A. Boehner — though the Ohio Republican stopped short of ruling the idea out.  

Both Boehner and the top-ranking Democrat in the House, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, were asked Thursday about an increase in the 18.4 cent-per-gallon federal gas tax after the National Republican Campaign Committee sought to make a gas tax increase a political liability for Democrats.  

Take Five: Rep. Tom MacArthur

It’s time again for Take Five, when HOH  talks with a member of Congress about topics relatively unrelated to legislative work.  

This week, freshman Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-N.J., tells us about his favorite beaches outside of Jersey, and his preferred music not including Springsteen (Spoiler: He couldn't keep himself from mentioning his love of the Jersey Shore and Bruce Springsteen). And since we wanted to clarify something, we threw in an extra (bonus!) question.  

Take Five: Rep. Mike Bost

It’s time again for Take Five, when HOH  talks with a member of Congress about topics relatively unrelated to legislative work.  

This week, Rep. Mike Bost, R-Ill., speaks about giving a dog mouth-to-mouth, his love of cruises and how he came to be the owner of a beauty salon.  

Benishek Staffer Wins Roll Call 2014 Election Contest

"I am incredibly surprised to get this email, since I never win contests," the legislative assistant for Rep. Dan Benishek, R-Mich., wrote to us, adding that he has lost "badly" in other picking contests such as March Madness brackets and fantasy football. To beat out the nearly 1,000 other completed entries, Stewart accurately predicted 12 out of 12 close Senate contests, and nine of the 10 House seats CQ Roll Call figured would be the most difficult to call. The 10th House seat, a final holdout in Arizona's 2nd District, might be Stewart’s one miss, but we will have to wait for a recount there to finish this month to be sure (Note: Stewart wins either way).  

What’s his secret?  

'Food Chains' Explores Farm Worker Rights, Wages

www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqZLrXVAde4 In Immokalee, Fla., after driving around the country visiting farms, Sanjay Rawal found the solution — at least one of them.

He’d been looking, after reading the book "Tomatoland" by Barry Estabrook, for a way to show on film the struggles facing farm laborers. The result, his first feature-length film, "Food Chains," debuted in Washington at the West End Cinema (2301 M St. NW) on Friday.

Capitol Christmas Tree Arrives on the Hill

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.  

Oh Ya! Capitol Christmas Tree Gets Lit

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. "Do you know how many years it takes to grow an 88-foot tree?" Franken asked the crowd of several hundred, using the opportunity to return briefly to his comedic roots. "Neither do I." The tree had traveled more than 2,000 miles from its home in Minnesota.  

Too Cool? Boehner's Thanksgiving Technique Falls Short of USDA Recommendation

www.youtube.com/watch?v=7rnrlikPjeQ

Speaker John A. Boehner has helpfully shared his favorite recipe for Thanksgiving turkey brine. Interestingly, the Ohio Republican says in his YouTube video that he cooks his "bird to about 160, max."  

Bill Cassidy Utilizes Weekly GOP Address, Again

Heading into a Dec. 6 runoff in Louisiana against Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu, Rep. Bill Cassidy took a second crack at the Republican weekly address to make his case for election to the Senate.

Just as in his first address in June, the doctor by trade recalled interactions with patients as a prominent forum to hear constituent concerns on the direction of the country.

John Dingell, Ed Roybal Honored at White House

Two congressional trailblazers were among the 19 people to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom Monday, the highest honor awarded to a civilian.  

While Stevie Wonder smiled broadly as President Barack Obama related that one of Wonder’s records was the first he ever purchased with his own money, Obama also paid his respects to the late Rep. Edward Roybal, D-Calif., founder of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and retiring Rep. John D. Dingell, D-Mich., the longest-serving member of Congress ever.

Josh Cook Settles in at BerlinRosen | Downtown Moves

There are a lot of things that can change campaigns: Your candidate’s opponent says he “likes to fire people;” the Supreme Court upholds key parts of your candidate’s signature legislative piece; the opponent says he has “binders full of women.”

More than that, though, campaign teams need to get voters excited about the issues they think are important. For Josh Cook, the former Pennsylvania digital director for President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign who became vice president of digital engagement at the New York City firm BerlinRosen in July, getting voters is one of the best parts of the job.

Pelosi Says Debate, Vote Should Be Held on Military Authorization (Video)

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., reiterated her enthusiasm at a Wednesday morning news conference for Congress to debate and ultimately vote on an Authorization for Use of Military Force to further combat the Islamic State terrorist group.  

"Congress has a role in defining how our country degrades and defeats ISIS," Pelosi said, referring to the insurgent terrorist organization that's also known as ISIL.  

When Democrats Have Zero Options

Democrats in Washington’s 4th District don’t have much of a choice on their ballot: a Republican, or another Republican.  

The Evergreen State's primary allows the top two vote recipients to proceed to the general election, regardless of party affiliation. In the open-seat race to succeed Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., Republicans won the top two slots for general election's mail-in ballot.  

Two Randolph-Macon College Professors Walk Into a Debate ...

The two Randolph-Macon College professors running for Virginia's 7th District did their best Tuesday night to make sure their workplace knew they didn't want to be there anymore.  

Dave Brat, an economics professor and the surprise Republican primary winner who beat former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor this June debated with his academic colleague, Democrat Jack Trammell, an associate professor of sociology at the campus they've toiled together at for more than a decade.  

Candidates Get Platform With GOP Weekly Address

Every week after President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, the Republicans get a chance to respond. Because they don't, of course, have a singular figure who would naturally address the nation each week, the speakers vary. So far in 2014, 11 Republican candidates — four House hopefuls and seven vying for Senate seats — have had the honor to take to YouTube and spread their party's message.  

In the fall of an election year, the GOP weekly address is an opportunity for Republicans to showcase some of their hopefuls on the ballot to a broader audience than the candidates can normally reach themselves — because not everyone pays attention to every Senate race, or to New York congressional campaigns.  

Joshua Bell Performs Do-Over Concert

   

Joshua Bell’s 2007 violin-busking session in the L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station is the ultimate urban metaphor, a reminder to keep an eye out for beauty in unexpected places.  

Senegal Represents at Phillips Collection

The paint filling in the sketched lines on an alley wall behind the Phillips Collection couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time.

The artists who stood on scaffolding and ladders, reaching to the highest portions of the mural with bright yellow, red and orange paint on Oct. 23 had come from across the Atlantic to decorate the wall. For them, artistic expression is necessarily political, and having their culture represented on a wall in the district is an important means of connecting the people of the United States with the people of Senegal, West Africa.