John Moolenaar

For 20, a New Year’s Boost in House Legislative Sway
How the winners of top committee assignments made their own luck

Keep an eye peeled for these House members with plum new committee assignments, from left to right, first row: Pete Aguilar, Earl L. “Buddy” Carter, Katherine M. Clark, Ryan A. Costello, Carlos Curbelo; second row: Suzan DelBene, Debbie Dingell, Brian Higgins, John Moolenaar, Grace Meng; third row: Dan Newhouse, Scott Peters, Mark Pocan, Raul Ruiz, David Schweikert; fourth row: Terri A. Sewell, Scott Taylor, Tim Walberg, Jackie Walorski and Mimi Walters. (Bill Clark, Meredith Dake-O’Connor and Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photos. Scott Taylor courtesy Scott Taylor for U.S. Congress)

Specialization seasoned with seniority is the surest recipe for a meaningful legislative career in the House, which is more than big enough to swallow all the dilettantes and short-timers without a trace. It’s finding a substantive niche, then fitting in over the long haul, that proves perennially frustrating for many members. 

But the goal of becoming a successful and substantive lawmaker just got a whole lot easier for a score of them.

Word on the Hill: Swearing In
Events surrounding the first day of the new Congress

Former Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, right, conducted a special swearing-in ceremony with Rep. Darin LaHood, R-Ill., in the Capitol in September. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Happy 2017 and welcome back!

Congress is in full force today with Senate and House swearing-in of the 115th Congress. Stay tuned for Roll Call’s coverage all day.

Republican Paul Mitchell Elected in Michigan’s 10th District
Businessman wins seat being vacated by retiring Candice Miller

Republican Paul Mitchell succeeds Rep. Candice S. Miller in Michigan's 10th District. (Photo Courtesy Paul Mitchell for Congress Facebook page)

Businessman Paul Mitchell is going to be the next representative for Michigan’s 10th District, with The Associated Press projecting he will defeat Democrat Frank Accavitti.

Mitchell led Accavitti 63 percent to 32 percent with 46 percent of precincts reporting. 

Michigan Delegation Joined Leadership at Negotiating Table
Flint Rep. Dan Kildee helped secure language on water bill that led to CR deal

From left, Rep. Dan Kildee, Sen. Gary Peters and Rep. Sander Levin, all Michigan Democrats, leave a news conference in the Capitol. Funding for the Flint water crisis was not included in the 10-week stopgap spending bill passed by Congress on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Eleventh-hour government funding deals are usually negotiated between the leaders of both parties in the House and Senate and the White House. This year, there were some extra players at the table.

Members of the Michigan delegation were heavily involved in securing aid for the city of Flint, which has been stricken by a water contamination crisis for more than a year.