Jim Bridenstine

No Representative in Congress? Don’t Worry, the House Clerk Has Your Back
Undercover Capitol takes you inside the historic workplace — one video at a time

With Debbie Lesko Sworn In, The House is Still Short Members
Chamber still has six vacancies, with some more on the way

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis.,left, holds a ceremonial swearing-in ceremony for Debbie Lesko, R-Ariz., right, as her husband Joe holds the Bible on Monday, May 7, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Even with Republican Debbie Lesko of Arizona being sworn in after her special election victory last month, the whole number of the House is 429, still short of capacity.

Lesko of took her oath of office as a member of the House at 6:59 p.m. on Monday, as well as the traditional ceremonial swearing in with Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis. 

Special, Special, Special Elections
Gearing up for the midterms amid one special election after another

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Republican Main Street Partnership Backs 10 Recruits
Endorsement comes with PAC check

Republican Main Street Partnership is backing Dino Rossi, a Republican candidate for Washington’s 8th congressional district. (D.A. Banks/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Republican PAC that supports lawmakers from the “governing wing of the GOP” is making its first non-incumbent endorsements of the cycle.

Republican Main Street Partnership is backing 10 recruits this week, all of whom have received the maximum primary contribution from the PAC. The PAC is also supporting its 75 House members.

Why the Hill’s Quitters Caucus Keeps Growing
Republicans, especially, are leaving Congress midterm to get a money-making head start

Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., is leaving the House to get a head start on his new career as a cable TV news analyst. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

There are really just three ways to give up a seat in Congress on your own timetable: retire, resign or quit. And the method with the least attractive connotations has become particularly popular in the last decade, especially among Republicans.

Those who use the term “retirement” properly are lawmakers who decline to run for re-election but complete the term for which the voters chose them before returning to civilian life, whether as money-makers or golf club denizens. Departures are best labeled “resignations” when senators or House members are forced to up and leave by particularly good, or ruinously bad, professional circumstances — elevated to higher positions in public service, most often, or politically poisoned by moral exposures or criminal failings.

Capitol Ink | The Awwws Have It

Tammy Duckworth and Baby Cast Their First Senate Vote Together, Opposing NASA Nominee
But Bridenstine confirmed to lead space agency, leaving House seat vacant for months

Sen. Tammy Duckworth arrived with her newborn baby Maile to cast a vote on the Senate floor on Thursday afternoon. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Maile Pearl Bowlsbey made Senate history Thursday, becoming the first newborn allowed on the Senate floor.

Maile, the daughter of Illinois Democratic Sen. Tammy Duckworth, born just last week, came to the floor the day after the chamber changed its antiquated rules to allow senators to bring in children under the age of 1.

Flake Flip on NASA Nominee Followed Senate Tumult
Vote to break filibuster of Bridenstine briefly deadlocked

The nomination of Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Okla., to lead NASA faced a brief hiccup on the Senate floor Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A confluence of events put President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead NASA on the verge of an unexpected blockade Wednesday afternoon.

Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona had initially voted against limiting debate on the nomination of GOP Rep. Jim Bridenstine of Oklahoma, but after almost an hour, he switched his vote.

To the Moon and Beyond! — Mission to Mars Funding in Omnibus
Goal is to put an astronaut on the red planet during Trump’s time in the White House

NASA for years has been planning long-range space exploration to the moon and Mars. Back in 2006, NASA Administrator Michael Griffin, Associate Administrator Scott Horowitz, and Constellation Program Manager Jeffrey Hanley discussed the Constellation Program, the space agency’s plan for robotic and human exploration of the moon and Mars. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump is hoping to land a U.S. astronaut on Mars during his tenure in the White House, and Congress is prepared to continue to back up that mission.

The fiscal 2018 spending bill would provide $1.35 billion in funding for the Orion Spacecraft at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The program, which received the same level of funding for fiscal 2017, is aimed at building a vehicle for deep-space travel, including the moon and Mars.

Maybe They’re Too Rich for Congress?
Seventeen members departing the Capitol are millionaires

California Rep. Darrell Issa is not running for a 10th term this year. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The wealthy are heading for the exits.

So far, 44 current lawmakers, or one in 12, have announced they are retiring at the end of the year or seeking new offices away from the Capitol. And collectively, they now account for nearly a third of the $2.43 billion in cumulative riches of the 115th Congress.