Brett Guthrie

Free, Quick and Convenient: Flu Shots at the Capitol
Office of the Attending Physician administers vaccines throughout the campus

Free flu shots for all congressional ID holders are available from the Office of the Attending Physician. Above, Kentucky Rep. Brett Guthrie gets his flu vaccination during a health fair in the Rayburn Building in September 2014. (Tom Williams / CQ Roll Call file photo)

Election Day is just around the corner, but flu season is already here. Anyone with a congressional ID can get a free flu shot — and mostly without a wait — right in the Capitol.

The Office of the Attending Physician administers flu shots at 10 locations across the Capitol complex each fall. The internal website for the OAP showed that all locations still had the vaccine in stock as of Thursday, but staffers told Roll Call they have been encouraged to get theirs soon because the OAP has limited supplies of the immunization. 

Photos of the Week: Summer ’18 Continues With Hot Dogs, a Flood and, Of Course, Protests
The week of July 16 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Photographer Leandra Brown shoots photos of ballerina Sabrina Schulbach in midair on the East Plaza of the Capitol on Monday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The summer is in full swing in Washington with the Hill abuzz after the president’s Helsinki meeting earlier this week with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The week saw demonstrators gather in front of the White House to protest President Donald Trump’s overseas summit.

Back at the Capitol, a summer staple — the hot dog lunch giveaway brought free food and former Major League Baseball greats to staffers of all kinds.

Can You Tell August Recess (Kinda Sorta) Is Almost Here?
Messaging votes, floods in the Capitol, stinky gas and boatloads of cash

Rep. Steve Knight, R-Calif., leaves the House after the last votes of the week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The spectacle of politics and how it fits, or doesn’t, into the nation’s culture. Subscribe to our newsletter here.

It’s almost time for the kinda-sorta August recess (with the House leaving after next week for a month, and the Senate, not so much) and that means there will be no shortage of messaging votes set up by Republican leaders so their members can head back to the hustings and brandish their votes before November’s midterm elections. 

How to Eat Like an Intern
This reporter tried to eat, and do activities, for free over a week on the Hill and it wasn’t easy

Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., eats a corn dog during the American Meat Institute’s annual Hot Dog Lunch in the Rayburn courtyard on July 18. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Full disclosure: I’ve never interned on the Hill. But I have been an unpaid intern, and most people you meet in Washington have too.

Without a chunk of money in the bank, how do interns get by? 

Federal Officials Push for New Types of Flu Vaccines
The FDA has not approved a new class of antivirals in the last 20 years

Kentucky Rep. Brett Guthrie and Julie Philip of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores get flu vaccinations during a health fair in the Rayburn Building in 2014. Federal officials told a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee this week that vaccines remain “stuck in the old technologies.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The heads of multiple health agencies told a House subcommittee Thursday that both the government and industry need to invest more resources in researching new forms of flu vaccines in light of this year’s epidemic.

Vaccines are often developed using egg-based technology, but newer cell-based and recombinant DNA technologies offer more speed and flexibility for fighting viruses — like the flu — that mutate frequently. While the technology offers promise, it remains uncommon, with lingering gaps in technology.

House Begins Work on Over-the-Counter Drug Fees
FDA director: Consumers unprotected and manufacturers open to liability

(U.S. Air Force photo/ Airman 1st Class Scott Jackson)

The House began public deliberations Wednesday on a bill that would boost the Food and Drug Administration’s oversight of over-the-counter drugs in exchange for industry-paid fees.

A bipartisan draft bill released earlier this week has support from the FDA and the over-the-counter drug industry. Under the new proposal, drug manufacturers would pay an annual fee for their facilities and an extra fee each time they submit a request to review proposed changes related to their product.

Word on the Hill: Muslim Group Advocacy Day Focuses on Refugees
Senate majority leader has birthday on Presidents Day

Massachusetts Rep. Jim McGovern will address the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA before its advocacy day on Capitol Hill on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The seventh annual “Day on the Hill” for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA today will highlight its “True Islam” campaign and “#MuslimAlly” hashtag.

The group maintains it is the oldest Muslim organization in America, and 75 chapters from across the country are expected to meet with hundreds of congressional offices. Its focus this year is on discussing threats to homeland security and refugee processing.

Ambitious House Agenda on Medicaid Could Stall in Senate
GOP senators doubt changes could gain traction in upper chamber

Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse said he thinks there might not be enough “political will” for a major Medicaid overhaul. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senators are warning that major changes to the Medicaid program may not survive the upper chamber, despite an aggressive push from House Speaker Paul D. Ryan to include a substantial overhaul of the program in the Republican measure to repeal the health care law.

In the House, Ryan and House Energy and Commerce Chairman Greg Walden are pushing their colleagues to consider major Medicaid changes on a repeal bill this spring. Those include funding mechanisms like so-called block grants and per capita caps or a cap on Medicaid enrollment for states that expanded the program under the health care law, according to House aides.

Drug Industry Spending Jumped As Cures Crossed Finish Line

Rep. Pat Tiberi, R-Ohio, walks to the Capitol for a vote on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry lobbying giants ramped up their advocacy spending in the final three months of 2016, just as Congress was finalizing a new law aimed at speeding drug development and research.

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America dropped $4.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2016, up from $3.8 in the same quarter in 2015, a CQ analysis of new lobbying filings shows. The Biotechnology Innovation Organization spent $2.3 million to influence policymakers over the same three months, up from $2.1 million the year before.

Word on the Hill: LGBT History Month
Restaurant opening and movie premiere this week

James Buchanan was the 15th president. (Courtesy WhiteHouse.gov)

Happy October! It's recess, Breast Cancer Awareness and LGBT History Month.

The Equality Forum which coordinates LGBT History Month releases an annual list of 31 LGBT icons, one for each day of October. This year they’ve added a former president.