Heard on the Hill

Iowa battlefield extends from politics to gridiron
Healthy trash talk is all part of life in Iowa-Iowa State rivalry

Sen. Joni Ernst is a proud Iowa State alumna, and not shy about it. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Iowa is a perennial political battleground, but Iowans know the most intense contest happens on the gridiron every year, when the Iowa Hawkeyes and Iowa State Cyclones try to demolish one another in one of college football’s oldest rivalries.

The reward? A move up in conference ranking, bragging rights and the coveted Cy-Hawk trophy. This year, ESPN’s “College GameDay” broadcast from Iowa State territory in Ames for the first time in school history on Sept 14. Iowa won, 18-17. 

John Yarmuth, from pinup to budget wonk

Kentucky Rep. John Yarmuth inspects a photo of himself as a staffer that was printed in Roll Call in 1971 as an April Fools’ joke. Yarmuth sat down with CQ Roll Call this week for an interview about his time as a staffer. (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call)

Marilyn Monroe, Ritchie Valens highlight post office namings
1950s star power on display, along with regular cast featuring war heroes, political titans

California Rep. Tony Cárdenas sponsored measures to rename post offices after Marilyn Monroe and Ritchie Valens. (Tom William/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Wednesday was a good day for post office namings, with references to some 1950s pop glitz gracing the House floor alongside the more typical war heroes and political titans. 

Sure, it’s not unusual to see your occasional celebrity post office designation. But when both Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe and crooner Ritchie Valens are in a vote series along with the late lawmakers Jeannette Rankin of Montana — the first woman elected to the House — and Sen. Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, well, HOH likes to make note of it.

Tater tots, swamp rats and an impeachment inquiry: Congressional Hits and Misses
Week of Sept. 23, 2019

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer holds up a copy of the transcript of President Donald Trump’s phone call with Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy during his press conference on impeachment in the Capitol on Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

We sure hope the Rayburn &pizza has plenty of dough
House-side lunch spot &pizza will honor $3 pie promotion tied to Bryce Harper strikeouts

Bryce Harper #3 of the Philadelphia Phillies reacts in the dugout after striking out in the eighth inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on June 28. Local chain &pizza has a $3 pizza special tied to Harper's propensity to whiff. (Eric Espada/Getty Images)

Update Sept. 24 9:20 a.m. | Bryce Harper struck out twice Monday in the Nationals’ 7-2 win over the Phillies.

The &pizza inside the Rayburn House Office Building will sell $3 pies on Tuesday and Thursday in light of former Washington National-turned-Philadelphia Phillie Bryce Harper’s return to D.C. The catch? He has to strike out against his former home team  for staffers to get a piece of the pie.

Cups is back in session!
We can all return to our regularly scheduled programming

Cups & Company reopens in the Russell Senate Office Building on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Our long caffeine-less nightmare has ended: Cups is finally open again.

After several weeks of staffers being without their favorite cup of joe in the Russell Senate Office Building basement, Cups & Company overflowed Friday morning with coffee and prepped food refugees from around the Capitol. 

Rep. Ann Wagner’s ‘Big House Brew’ wins big at annual beer competition
Rep. Dan Crenshaw’s One Eye-PA won the popularity contest

Rep. Ann Wagner won Anheuser Busch's annual Brew Across America competition. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The results are in: Brews are definitely beer-partisan

The big winner at Wednesday’s second annual Brew Across America was Missouri Republican Rep. Ann Wagner with her “Big House Brew,” which might have had a home-state advantage.

If you want to get to the GOP retreat, you have to get through Kathryn Lyons first
The road to Baltimore goes through Heard on the Hill

Oklahoma Rep. Tom Cole shows off his reading materials for Thursday’s bus ride to the House Republicans’ retreat in Baltimore. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Eastern Market can haz ‘Eat Brgz’
Concept burger shop stretches boundaries with custom menu

Eat Brgz owner Brandon Gaynor discusses with Heard on the Hill his take on burgers and milkshakes. (Nathan Ouellette/CQ Roll Call)

Brandon Gaynor didn’t completely know the “how” behind opening a restaurant, but he had a good feeling about the “when.”

The launch of his Eastern Market burger shop during August recess “allowed us a little bit of a ramp-up period,” the former investment analyst-turned-restaurateur told me as we sat down in his new joint at 250 7th Street SE.

Have it your way: Eat Brgz makes patties personal

Brandon Gaynor, owner of Eat Brgz, plates a burger for CQ Roll Call's Heard on the Hill Reporter, Kathryn Lyons. (Nathan Ouellette/CQ Roll Call)