Michelle Lujan Grisham

Press Beats Members at Congressional Women's Softball Game, to Record Crowd
The Bad News Babes win 2-1 over the members' team

Capitol Police officer Crystal Griner throws out the first pitch in the Congressional Women’s Softball game on Wednesday at Watkins Recreation Center on Capitol Hill. Griner was injured in last week’s shooting at the Republican baseball practice. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Between the large crowds, record-breaking fundraising, a heroic first pitch, bipartisanship throughout the stadium and the game itself, it was hard to pinpoint just one takeaway at Wednesday’s Congressional Women’s Softball Game.

The press team, known as the Bad News Babes, won the ninth annual game, 2-1, against the members of Congress.

Who’s Playing in Tonight’s Congressional Softball Game
The ninth annual game pits members of Congress against the media to raise money

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., celebrates with teammates after members defeated the media team, 10-5, in the 2014 Congressional Softball Game. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Members of Congress team up with the Washington press corps in the annual Congressional Women’s Softball Game Wednesday night to raise money for breast cancer.

This year’s game has seen interest and ticket sales soar after the shooting at last week’s Republican team practice before the Congressional Baseball Game, which set a record for attendance.

New Mexican Would Be First Native American Congresswoman
Former state party chairwoman running for Lujan Grisham’s seat

Debra Haaland is the latest Democrat to seek the open 1st District seat, which New Mexico Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham is vacating for a gubernatorial run. (Courtesy Democratic Party of New Mexico)

Former New Mexico Democratic Party Chairwoman Debra Haaland announced Tuesday she’s running for the state’s open 1st District seat. If elected, she would be the first Native-American congresswoman.

Haaland is a member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe and a former San Felipe Pueblo tribal administrator, the Albuquerque Journal reported. She ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor in 2014.

Ex-Leader of Anti-Immigration Group Named Agency Ombudsman
Former FAIR chief Kirchner to represent U.S. Immigration Service

Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., has in the past objected to Julie Kirchner’s association with the Trump administration, arguing that “instead of offering workable solutions” to immigration issues, appointees like Kirchner “only offer blunt force.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Important Connection Between Governors and Congress
A first look at the gubernatorial race ratings for 2017-18

South Dakota Rep. Krisit Noem is a candidate for governor in 2018 and leaves behind a safe Republican seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In Washington, it’s easy to ignore governors as distant rulers over far away lands. But now is a good time to start paying attention to what’s happening in state races.

Voters in 38 states (including nine of the 10 most populated) will elect a governor over the next two years, and the results have a direct connection to Capitol Hill. The large number of races give aspiring (or weary) members an opportunity to leave the House, and consequently, leave behind potentially vulnerable open seats. And governors in 28 of those states will have a role (specifically veto power) in the next round of redistricting, which will impact what party controls the House in the next decade. 

Lujan Grisham Raises Nearly $900K for Governor’s Race
Outraises rivals, prospective rivals in New Mexico

Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., reported $741,229 in cash on hand. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced she outraised her potential rivals for her New Mexico gubernatorial bid.

Grisham raised $892,744 in a six-month period, compared to $211,569 for potential Democratic rivals state Attorney General Hector Balderas, who has not announced if he’ll run, and state Sen. Joe Cervantes, who reported loaning himself $197,000. 

Bipartisan Road Trip Arrives at the Capitol Just in Time for Votes
Reps. Will Hurd and Beto O'Rourke completed the trip from Texas

Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-Texas, left, and Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, walk up the House steps at the Capitol just in time for votes on on Wednesday, March 15, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Forty minutes before a House vote on Wednesday, Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke and Republican Rep. Will Hurd pulled up to the House steps, making the completion of their bipartisan road trip.

The two Texas congressmen decided to road trip together from San Antonio to Washington, D.C., after the East Coast’s winter storm caused flight cancellations earlier in the week. The more than 24-hour trip, which included several stops and a few hours for sleep, ended with a tight arrival to work.

Hispanic Caucus Members Turned Away From ICE Meeting
Numbers limited for bipartisan meeting, so lawmakers barred at door

Grisham was stunned that fellow members were turned away from the meeting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Democrats left a bipartisan meeting Thursday with the head of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement baffled — not just by what they heard but by the fact that some of their colleagues were not allowed to attend the meeting.

ICE Acting Director Thomas D. Homan met with a bipartisan group of House lawmakers for about an hour Thursday to discuss the agency’s recent raids that have led to the apprehension of at least 683 undocumented immigrants. That was the number ICE provided during the meeting, but Democrats contend the number is actually higher.

NRCC Goes After Blue-Collar Districts in 2018
GOP campaign arm releases list of 36 initial targets

Rep. Tim Walz speaks with guests during a campaign event in Duluth for fellow Minnesota Rep. Rick Nolan last fall. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Congressional Committee’s initial list of offensive targets for 2018 includes 36 Democrat-held districts, many in blue-collar areas of the country.

If Democrats are targeting the well-educated suburbs (see New Jersey’s 11th District, for example), where Donald Trump either barely won or underperformed, Republicans are going after many rural districts where Hillary Clinton underperformed the congressional ticket. 

Goodlatte Grilled on Staff Nondisclosure Question
Judiciary chairman refuses to say if staff worked on immigration order

Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte refused to answer questions about how his committee staff conducted its work with Donald Trump’s presidential transition team. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte refused to answer questions on Wednesday about whether his staff signed nondisclosure agreements from the Trump transition team when they worked on a contentious immigration order that was signed and delivered with practically no notice.

The Virginia Republican managed to escape in silence from a crew of reporters grilling him on the matter as he left an appearance at the National Press Club.