Heard on the Hill

Finance Committee Mourns Loss of Longtime Republican Staffer
Jim Lyons was a veteran tax counsel

Longtime Senate Finance tax counsel Jim Lyons died Thursday, the committee confirmed Friday morning.

"Smart as a whip, Jim was a tough but fair negotiator during some of Congress's most consequential economic debates and a dogged defender of pure, sound tax policy. His quick wit brought ease during times of gridlock," Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, said in a statement. "His keen political sense often put naysayers back on their heels during the toughest of tax debates. Even more, Jim had the heart of a lion."

Word on the Hill: Nats' Election Night
Get to tonight's game early and receive a donkey or elephant figurine

A sneak peak at the donkey and elephant figurines to be given out to the first 25,000 fans at Friday's Washington Nationals-Miami Marlins game. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The first-ever Election Night at Nationals Park is tonight for the Miami Marlins game.

The first 25,000 fans to enter the park will receive their choice of either a Nationals-branded donkey or elephant figurine.

Can't Figure Out Your Hill Job? There's an Outlet for That
Omair Mirza's new group helps legislative assistants learn about their jobs

Omair Mirza has worked in the office of Rep. Andre Carson for three years. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Omair Mirza found navigating his legislative assistant job difficult when he first got the role.

He started in the office of Indiana Democratic Rep. André Carson as an intern in June 2013. He moved through the ranks from staff assistant to legislative correspondent, and in June 2015, he became a legislative assistant.

Word on the Hill: 'See Ya'
Singing senators serenade birthday boy and a hip playlist

Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pa., (center) helped save the day on Wednesday. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Two congressional heroes emerged this week.

Republican Reps. Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania and Michael C. Burgess of Texas helped resuscitate a man in the Rayburn House Office Building on Wednesday.

Rick Perry’s Short-Lived TV Dancing Career Is Over
Former Texas governor was eliminated from "Dancing with the Stars"

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry with dancing partner Emma Slater were eliminated from ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" on Tuesday. (Courtesy ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" Instagram page)

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry became the second contestant to get the boot from ABC's “Dancing With the Stars” on Tuesday night.

At the end of the episode, Perry, model Amber Rose and actress Terra Jole were all in jeopardy of being axed.

Take Five: Sen. Jim Risch
Idaho Republican goes home every weekend

Sen. Jim Risch calls his granddaughters his "little princesses." (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Idaho Republican Sen. Jim Risch, 73, talks elk hunting in the Gem State, taking a high school aptitude test and getting into politics by accident.

Q: Tell us about your cows in Idaho.

Word on the Hill: Are You Registered?
Katy Perry releases video promoting voting in November

Members, groups and celebrities want to make sure you're registered to vote. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

For National Voter Registration Day, Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., pushed for people to vote, in the best way he could. On Tuesday, he tweeted, “Today is #NationalVoterRegistrationDay — I was beaten, left bloody & unconscious so that every person could register and vote. Do your part.”

If that doesn’t leave you running to sign up to vote, I don’t know what would.

National Gallery Gets Some Breathing Room
Roll Call gets sneak peek to the renovated East Building, which opens Friday

The U.S. Capitol is pictured from the terrace of newly renovated National Gallery of Art East Building, September 27, 2016. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The addition of 12,250 square feet in the renovated East Building of the National Gallery of Art provides some much-needed breathing room and offers gallery curators an innovative space to display new works.

The expansion is welcome given the high volume of visitors to the gallery and other popular Smithsonian museums. The modern design also includes a roof terrace, which is a popular feature in many other Constitution Avenue buildings with views of the Capitol and National Mall. But this roof also features several interesting sculptures from the museum's collection.

'SNL' Reunion for Cleaning Product Transparency
Maya Rudolph on her ad campaign: 'You picked the right lady to not have any shame'

Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, right, and actress Maya Rudolph arrive for a briefing at the Reserve Officers Association building to express support for the Cleaning Product Right to Know Act. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

"Saturday Night Live" alums Maya Rudolph and Sen. Al Franken teamed up on Tuesday to push legislation for full disclosure of chemicals in institutional and household cleaning products.

“Maya and I were just discussing this. She has four — wow — four kids. Wow,” the Minnesota Democrat said in his opening remarks at the Reserve Officers Association building in Washington. “I have two children and three grandchildren now and I want to make sure that they’re not exposed to toxic chemicals and the people that work with cleaning products day in and day out, especially, shouldn’t have to worry about the long term exposure and their own health and safety.”

Rubio on Fernandez: 'Jose’s Story Was Our Story'
Senator pays tribute to Miami baseball star killed over the weekend

Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, seen here talking to reporters at the 2016 All-Star Game availability, died in a boating accident on Sunday. (Courtesy Arturo Pardavila III/Wikimedia Commons CC-BY-2.0)

A humble and heartbroken Sen. Marco Rubio paid tribute on Tuesday to Jose Fernandez, the Miami Marlins pitcher who was found dead on Sunday.

“Jose’s story was our story because he reminds so many in my community of someone they know,” the Florida Republican said.

Congress' 'Athletics Director' Kicks Off College Football Caucus
Roger Williams brings together members passionate about college football

Texas Rep. Roger Williams, is hanging up his baseball jersey for the time being to talk about football. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Texas Republican Rep. Roger Williams has found another way to bring his love of sports to his work in Congress — this time teaming up with Alabama Democratic Rep. Terri A. Sewell to launch the College Football Caucus.

“Between the baseball caucus, football caucus and coach of the baseball team, guys are starting to call me the athletics director of Congress,” Williams said.

Word on the Hill: Roll Out the Blue Carpet
Maya Rudolph talks legislation on Capitol Hill

The 2015 National Youth of the Year Whitney Stewart, center, with singer Kelly Rowland and actor Denzel Washington at the Boys and Girls Clubs of America gala last September. (Courtesy of Boys & Girls Club)

A star-studded event in Washington today will award $1 million in college scholarships to outstanding young people, as decided by the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Ballerina Misty Copeland, singer Ashanti, model Damaris Lewis, retired football player Andre Reed and ABC’s Paula Faris will celebrate the six young finalists at the 69th annual Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year gala. One of them will be honored as the Youth of the Year.

Tuesday Trivia: Female Testimony
How well do you know your women's rights advocates?

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton testified during a House Select Committee on Benghazi in October 2015. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Who was the first woman to testify before a congressional committee?

A. Susan B. Anthony

What to Do When You Think Your Boss Is Going to Lose the General Election
House staffers have until Jan. 2, Senate staffers until March 2

Congressional staff stand along the aisle during a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The polling numbers aren’t looking good. Your boss has been consistently listed as vulnerable. Do you send out your resume?

Well, there are different routes you can take.

Word on the Hill: Team Poe
Donate books and watch tonight's debate on the Hill

(Courtesy Rep. David Cicilline via Twitter)

No matter the party, members of Congress will root for their colleagues in times of need.

#TeamPoe bracelets are making their way through the Capitol. The office of Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, is handing them out to members to show their support for the congressman who has leukemia.