Heard on the Hill

Word on the Hill: Inauguration Planning
Wi-Fi and portable potties

Spectators on the National Mall watch an address by President Barack Obama during his second inauguration in 2013. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

What’s your plan for the inauguration? There are plenty of galas and balls to try and get into mainly on Thursday and Friday.

Thanks to Comcast, you can look up something to do at the last minute or contact your friends easily. Through Jan. 26, the internet provider has more than 6,800 Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots outdoors around Washington for the public to connect for free.

Tips for Taking In the Inauguration — Or Avoiding It
5 things locals can do to prepare

Zara Kelsey holds on to friend Annliese McCauley during President Barack Obama’s second inauguration on the National Mall in 2013. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

While most of the world will be watching from afar, the nation’s capital will be packed with visitors on Friday when Donald Trump is sworn in as the nation’s 45th president. 

Whether you’re attending the ceremony, going to an inauguration ball or just live in Washington, here are some tips to get you through the day.

Take Five: Sen. Roger Wicker
Mississippi Republican disappointed in members boycotting inauguration

Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker, left, seen here with Georgia Sen. Johnny Isakson, says he’s living his American dream. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Mississippi Republican Sen. Roger Wicker, 65, talks inauguration advice for the new president, members’ boycott of Friday’s event, and what’s on his reading list.

Q: What’s your take on the political climate and boycotting surrounding the inauguration?

Clay: Taking Down Ferguson Painting is ‘Unconstitutional’
Missouri congressman will keep controversial painting in his office

Reps. Cedric Richmond, far left, and William Lacy Clay, center, continue to defend a Missouri student's painting. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. William Lacy Clay said the taking down of a Capitol high school art competition painting of police-community relations in Ferguson, Missouri, is unconstitutional.

After a week of hanging and unhanging, the painting was removed from the Cannon tunnel on Tuesday.

Staff Mourns Loss of Veteran Democratic Staffer Tim Mitchell
Mitchell served as a Senate staffer for 25 years

Reid said Mitchell was "an institution" and key to passing major legislation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate staffers are mourning the loss of longtime Democratic staffer Tim Mitchell, who passed away Saturday night after a battle with brain cancer.

“My dear friend Tim Mitchell was an institution,” former Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., wrote in a Facebook post. “He helped make the Senate function appropriately, and he was integral in helping us pass many pieces of legislation. He was fair and was never pushed around. I will always remember all the good he did for me and the country.”

Word on the Hill: Inauguration Week
Other events going on this week

More confirmation hearings are scheduled for this week. Last week, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, nominee to be the ambassador to the United Nations got a hug from Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., on the Senate subway. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

It’s the week of Donald Trump’s inauguration, which means parties, crowds and traffic in the nation’s capital.

Check out our list of balls and galas going on this week. If you have more to add, email AlexGangitano@cqrollcall.com.

Ferguson Painting Coming Down Again
Controversial piece, subject of tug of war between Democrats and Republicans, determined to violate rules

The controversial painting by Missouri student David Pulphus depicts police officers as animals. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Capitol high school art competition painting of police-community relations in Ferguson, Missouri, which was the subject of a tug of war between Democrats and Republicans last week, is coming down.

The painting, which depicts police officers as animals, was ruled to be in violation of House Office Building Commission rules and will be taken down after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, Washington GOP Rep. Dave Reichert said, accroding to CNN.

Maine Democrat to Trump: L.L. Bean Doesn't Need Your Help
Chellie Pingree sees no reason for liberals to boycott the retailer

Maine Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree thinks there's "absolutely" no reason for liberals to boycott L.L. Bean because one of its board members donated to a PAC supporting Donald Trump. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Liberals should not be boycotting L.L. Bean just because a board member supported Donald Trump, Maine’s sole Democrat in Congress, Rep. Chellie Pingree of North Haven, said Friday.

“It’s a great company and those are American-made boots,” said Pingree, who can often be spotted strolling through the House with one of the Maine-based company’s canvas totes slung over her shoulder.

Word on the Hill: One Week Out
Women’s March adds new partners

Dr. Ben Carson arrives in the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee offices before his confirmation hearing to be secretary of Housing and Urban Development on Thursday. Confirmation hearings continue into next week (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration is only a week away.

Watch for our list of balls, counter-parties and other things to do around the District that day. And feel free to pass along any events you want to share with our readers — email AlexGangitano@cqrollcall.com

Cummings Staffer in Critical Condition After Fire That Killed 6 Children
‘They didn’t have a shot,’ Cummings tells reporters about the victims

Maryland Rep. Elijah E. Cumming said he spoke with staffer Katie Malone’s husband on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings’ district staffer Katie Malone is in critical condition after a fire at her Baltimore home that killed six of her nine children. 

“It’s hard for me to imagine losing one child. But to lose six in an instant is very, very, very difficult," Cummings said at a news conference Thursday.

Inauguration Balls, Parties and Galas in D.C.
Events surrounding Donald Trump’s big day

Which balls will President-elect Trump and his wife Melania attend?. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Inauguration Day comes once every four years and is the biggest event that Washington, D.C., has to offer.

Surrounding President-elect Donald Trump’s big day — Friday, Jan. 20 — state societies, organizations and nonprofits hold parties, balls and galas to celebrate.

Ryan Calls Ferguson Painting ‘Disgusting’
Reichert sends letter to AOC saying painting violates contest’s rules

Michigan Rep. John Conyers Jr. passes by Missouri artist David Pulphus’ painting after it was rehung on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan is siding with his party and wants the painting of police-community relations in Ferguson, Missouri, that depicts police officers and others as animals to be taken down.

“This is disgusting and it’s not befitting the Capitol,” Ryan said Thursday on “The Mike Gallagher Show,” adding that “this isn’t a question of First Amendment rights.”

Lights Out at CIA Director Confirmation Hearing
Pepco says issue was internal to Senate office buildings

Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo, center, waits to be introduced by fellow Kansans Sen. Pat Roberts, left, and former Sen. Bob Dole during a power outage at his Senate Intelligence Committee confirmation hearing on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 2:20 p.m. | Virginia Democratic Sen. Mark Warner had just brought up Russian hacking and the 2016 election during a high-profile Senate Intelligence Committee hearing when the lights went out.

If the scene Thursday morning in the Hart Senate Office Building didn’t exactly stoke paranoia, it at least elicited some chuckles during an otherwise dead-serious confirmation hearing for Kansas Republican Rep. Mike Pompeo to be the next director of the CIA.

Word on the Hill: How Will You Judge Trump’s Inauguration Speech
‘I’m also very much of a germophobe, by the way. Believe me’

President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration is almost a week away. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

We’re almost a week away to President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration and on Wednesday, he gave his first news conference since the election.

The Quote.com blog analyzed presidential inaugural addresses and ranked them by reading level. The analysis was part of a study of top American speeches, on eight different linguistic scales to figure out the complexity of their syntaxes. Of the inaugural addresses, the analysis found that President George H.W. Bushgave the easiest speech in 1989 while President John Adams gave the most difficult in 1797.

Young: GPO to Use ‘Hoosiers’ Because No One Says ‘Indianan’
‘Setting the record straight, we hope, for time immemorial’

Sen. Todd Young, R-Ind., reveals his favorite 'Hoosier' theory. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

People from Indiana will soon be referred to as Hoosiers in government documents, in part thanks to the state’s new junior senator, Todd Young

The Government Publishing Office is releasing information declaring the name change on Thursday, Young said.