360 Degree View of Hillary in Iowa

(Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

As the Iowa caucuses creep ever closer, presidential candidates are flooding the state. On Wednesday, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton held an organizing event Burlington, Iowa, which Al Drago captured. See the view from our 360-degree camera below.

Santa Claus Is Coming to Campaign

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Santa Claus poses for a photo with Harrison Shupe (18 months) and his brother Jonathan Shupe (5) before the start of a Dec. 18 campaign rally for presidential candidate Ted Cruz at the Life Church in Mechanicsville, Va.

Obama to Highlight Post-Katrina Progress in New Orleans

Obama plans to praise the resiliency of New Orleans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

"What started out as a natural disaster became a manmade one — a failure of government to look out for its own citizens."  

That's how President Barack Obama plans to sum up the tragedy that took place when Hurricane Katrina hit along the Gulf Coast a decade ago, devastation that became part of the public consciousness, especially in New Orleans where he will be speaking.  

Behind the Photo: I-Day

By Al Drago

On July 1 I woke up before the sun and headed to Annapolis for one of my favorite assignments to shoot: The Naval Academy Induction Day. Also known as "I-Day," parents drop off their kids and say their goodbyes for the next six weeks. During these weeks the new students, known as "plebes," will learn all the ins and outs of the Navy, the Academy, and what is expected of them for the next four years.  

Why You Want News Photographers to Roam Free at Political Events


When covering news events where there is a lot of media interest, photographers are at the mercy of organizers giving them access to roam around and get good art. Two of my recent assignments — one in Boston and one in Virginia — demonstrated how some event officials have very different views on how to handle photographers.  

I was the only news photographer in attendance at the March 29 dinner before the dedication of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the U.S. Senate in Boston. There were maybe four event photographers and a handful of reporters. I was relegated to a roped-off area where VIPs were having their photos taken in front of a “step and repeat” (a backdrop with the event’s branding).  

'When It Comes to Luck, You Make Your Own'

I am not a morning person. It's 5 a.m., my alarm is blaring at some random interstate-exit hotel near Montgomery, Ala., and all I want to do is go back to sleep. But I really want to get some beauty shots of the Edmund Pettus Bridge and the town of Selma bathed in sunrise light for our coverage of the 50th anniversary of "Bloody Sunday."  

The sun starts to peek over the treetops as I begin to walk across the bridge, shooting photos of mist on the Alabama River, reflections of the town on the water and, of course, the name of the bridge painted on the span itself. I notice a few camera crews hanging around and I write it off as the start of the media swarming this otherwise quiet Southern landmark for the anniversary. Then more media arrive, and it becomes apparent I have stumbled into an event I need to shoot. A press secretary arrives and informs us “he” will be arriving soon to walk across the bridge.  

Obama Would End Death Tax Break for Wealthy to Fund Middle Class Tax Breaks, Programs

Obama has a new plan to eliminate a death tax break that benefits wealthy heirs to fund middle class tax breaks and other programs. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Barack Obama's sweeping new tax proposal, detailed by senior administration officials Saturday, takes aim at the less-well-known death tax break.  

The new wrinkle is part of a broader economic plan to be outlined by Obama in his State of the Union address Tuesday. He will propose eliminating a big tax break for wealthy heirs to fund new and expanded middle class tax cuts and other proposals such as his free community college initiative. The biggest banks would also face higher taxes.  

Slideshow: Roll Call's 2014 News Photos of the Year

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo

This year was a big one in political news — and that is reflected in our 2014 News Photos of the Year. More than half of our best photos of the year are a result of Roll Call's dedication to sending journalists on the road to see congressional campaigns on the ground.  

A photographer from one of our competitors approached me a few months ago for advice on how to get his publication to send him on the road. I told him the trick is having editors who already understand how photography adds a valuable dimension to political reporting.  

A Tale of Two Handshakes

Taking pictures at a political event is hard.  

I'm a visually oriented person who started off my nascent journalism career (in junior high, in a "wet" lab) as a shooter, and I've always respected how much the right image can communicate about a story. But I gained a deeper appreciation for political photojournalism when I compared the pictures I took on the campaign trail with ones taken by CQ Roll Call Photo Editor Bill Clark and Photographer Tom Williams.  

The Photographer's Guide to Food on the Road


When my editors propose a politics trip to a particular state, I immediately begin considering the native cuisine, or lack thereof, available at my destination. Here’s a look at the best and worst of my on-the-road dining this election cycle. GEORGIA I am no stranger to Peach State cuisine, as my first two newspaper jobs were at the Marietta Daily Journal, outside Atlanta, and the Augusta Chronicle. My mother’s side of the family lives there, too.  

The first treat of the trip was introducing our Associate Politics Editor Kyle Trygstad to the world of Waffle House during our stay in Valdosta while following Democrat Michelle Nunn. I could live on bacon and grits.