Barbecues, beaches and Monday brunch — that’s what Memorial Day means to some.
But for Members of Congress, the long weekend may be a little more active, with ceremonies to honor fallen soldiers, intercontinental travel and, maybe, a few family barbecues.
We chatted with some Members to hear their plans for the long weekend.
Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.): “I’m going to be in Bulgaria [for the NATO Parliamentary Assembly meeting]. ... I’m coming back Monday through Germany to go to the Hamm Cemetery, where George Patton and the 3rd ID were buried. We’re doing a wreath-laying.”
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.): “We just had a big tornado in my district, so I’m going to be going around everybody’s neighborhood, just sort of free-flowing, just checking in on people. I’m ... going to go help people move some trees or chainsaw some wood and get people back on their feet. I’m going to bring my kids when I do it.”
Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas): “I’m one of the speakers at a Commemorative Air Force event in Texas, so I’ll be with the folks at the CAF and the family members of the fallen. I did that last year, and it’s a particularly moving experience to be with the families who have lost loved ones.”
Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.): “I’ll be in a number of Memorial Day ceremonies and parades for our fallen heroes. ... [Memorial Day] really is about being thoughtful about those who have given their lives for our country. So to me, it’s more of a solemn holiday.”
Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Pa.): “I’m going to be traveling [Pennsylvania’s 3rd] district. ... We’ll probably do at least one family picnic on Sunday, probably another one on Monday. Usually [Kelly’s car dealership] is open for sales, but this time I’ll be traveling the district.”
Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-Mo.): “My brother and his wife are expecting a new baby any day now, so we’re hoping to have some big news soon. It’s also my wife’s birthday weekend.”
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.