It goes unspoken on Capitol Hill that the Senate is more exclusive than the House. There are fewer Senators, after all, and the chamber enjoys swankier digs.
But Members of Congress rarely point that out. It just wouldn’t be polite.
On occasion, however, somebody will — as Rep. Leonard Lance did Wednesday morning. The New Jersey Republican visited the upper, er, other chamber for a press conference alongside Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Lisa Niemi Swayze, widow of actor Patrick Swayze. Lance discussed his legislation to support pancreatic cancer research (Swayze died of the disease), but he also expressed excitement about visiting the Senate side of the Capitol.
“The House of Lords, as we call it in the House of Representatives,” Lance joked.
Visiting the Senate wasn’t the only departure for him Wednesday, he said. The Congressman said he usually doesn’t wear any jewelry except his wedding ring but he had accessorized his outfit with a pancreatic cancer awareness bracelet.
Lance doesn’t even typically wear a watch, he added.
“There’s always somebody on Capitol Hill to tell you what time it is,” he said. “And actually, tell you where to go.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.