Kevin Cramer

Photos of the Week: Lame Duck, New Member Orientation and Official Class Photos
The week of Nov. 12 as captured by Roll Call's photographers

Rep.-elect Lauren Underwood, D-Ill., arrives for New Member Orientation at the Courtyard Marriott in Southeast D.C., on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The midterms have come and gone and it’s back to the Hill for members new and old. The lame duck sessions in the House and Senate gaveled in Tuesday while new member orientation kicked off its first week.

The chambers, along with orientation, recess next week for the Thanksgiving holiday and will start up sessions again the week of Nov. 26.

Trump Campaign Tests Out Nickname Game for 2020
NRSC, outside groups leaned into tactic to vanquish Heitkamp, Donnelly in midterms

Expect a batch of new nicknames for President Donald Trump's political opponents as the 2020 campaign heats up. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump’s campaign team is experimenting in its laboratory with potential nicknames for his potential opponents in the 2020 presidential election.

The president’s trademark campaign tactic from 2016 — the birth year of “Crooked” Hillary Clinton, “Little” Marco Rubio, and “Lyin’” Ted Cruz — became so ubiquitous in his speeches and campaign literature that it spawned an exhaustive Wikipedia list of everyone whose name Trump has manipulated for political gain.

Midterms Were a Buffet Election for Democrats, Republicans
Each side can pick what it liked best from the results — and ignore warning signs

Sen.-elect Mike Braun, R-Ind., Sen.-elect Mitt Romney, R-Utah, Sen.-elect Josh Hawley, R-Mo., Sen.-elect Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Gov. Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Sen.-elect Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., pose for a group photo in McConnell’s office in the Capitol on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

When I was a kid in small-town Oregon, my family would occasionally go to King’s Table, and my sister and I would get free rein at the buffet.

I became famous in my own family for my condiment salad — an impressive collection of bacon bits, croutons, shredded cheese, sunflower seeds and plenty of ranch dressing. Essentially, my strategy involved choosing what looked and tasted good and avoiding anything of nutritional value.

The Candidates Mattered. But Opinions About Trump Mattered More
Different outcomes in the House and Senate mostly about the president

Democratic Sens. Heidi Heitkamp and Joe Donnelly both lost their bids for second terms Tuesday night. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Both parties had something to celebrate after Tuesday’s midterm elections, depending on where they looked. But that split outcome — with Democrats winning the House, and Republicans gaining seats in the Senate — underscores the extent to which opinions about President Donald Trump shape today’s politics.

Republicans largely prevailed at the Senate level because they were running in red states where President Donald Trump performed well in 2016. The House saw the opposite outcome, but the reason was the same. Republicans largely struggled because they were running in places where Trump was unpopular.

Republicans Maintain Senate Control
Democrats lose seats in Indiana, North Dakota and Missouri

Senate Republicans, led by Mitch McConnell, have retained their control of the chamber after the 2018 midterms. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans will maintain control of the Senate, but it is still unclear by how narrow a margin.

The Associated Press projects the chamber will remain in Republican hands, with a Democratic takeover blocked after losses in Indiana and North Dakota. Things got worse for Democrats later in the night when they lost Missouri, too. 

Heidi Heitkamp’s Loss Cements North Dakota’s Shift to the Right
Republican victor Kevin Cramer closely tied himself to Trump

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp’s path to victory was difficult from the start in an increasingly Republican state. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Kevin Cramer unseated Heidi Heitkamp in the North Dakota Senate race, defeating the last remaining Democrat to hold statewide office.

With 68 percent of precincts reporting, Cramer led Heitkamp 58 percent to 42 percent when The Associated Press called the race.

Election Day Loser? Will Lobby for a Paycheck? Then K Street May Beckon
But even who’s hot and who’s not in lobby world may be influenced by politics

K Street sign at 15th and K Streets in Washington, DC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Not only is control of the House and Senate on the line Tuesday, but so too are the future careers of lawmakers and their aides, who could find themselves out of a job.

The midterm election losers and their congressional staff members may look to K Street as a possible next step. But if Democrats flip the House, that would mean a slew of Republicans flooding the lobbying market at a time when K Street already takes an increasingly cautious approach to hiring big names.

Roll Call on the Road: The 2018 Midterms in Pictures
Our photographers traveled the country to cover the 2018 campaigns

Harley Rouda, a Democrat running in California’s 48th District, speaks with supporters on May 20 during a campaign rally in Laguna Beach, Calif. Rouda later advanced to the general election against GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Roll Call photographers have traveled from Maryland to California and Texas to Montana to capture images of the midterm campaigns.

The 10 Most Vulnerable Senators on Election Day
Minnesota’s Tina Smith debuts on list as Wisconsin’s Tammy Baldwin drops off

For the third month in a row, North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp tops the list of Senate incumbents most likely to lose on Nov. 6. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats continue to dominate Roll Call’s list of the year’s most vulnerable senators, but one Democrat in a state President Donald Trump won has fallen off since our last rankings a month ago. 

Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin is no longer in the Top 10, with operatives on both sides noting the Badger State contest has been slipping away from Republicans. With Baldwin dropping off, Texas Republican Ted Cruz and New Jersey Democrat Robert Menendez move up, although both are still favored to win re-election.

Capitol Insiders Make Their Predictions on the Midterms
Half of Republican aides say they'll keep control of the House, 9 in 10 Democrats predict they’ll take control

A voter arrives at the Philomont fire station in Virginia’s 10th Congressional District, Rep. Barbara Comstock's district, on primary election day on June 12. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The midterm elections are just days away and both Republican and Democratic aides are hoping for the best.

In their responses to CQ’s Capitol Insiders Survey, half of Republican aides said their party would retain the House majority. That’s optimistic. Political prognosticators give the GOP little hope of that, given the large number of House GOP retirements and the antipathy toward President Donald Trump in suburban districts. The website FiveThirtyEight puts chances of a GOP House majority at 17 percent.