Tim Walz

Members, USO Make Care Packages for Hurricane Relief Troops
1,500 packages assembled for National Guard troops deployed to Texas and Florida

Reps. Suzan DelBene of Washington, second from right, and Mike Coffman of Colorado, right, assemble care packages in the Rayburn building Tuesday for members of the National Guard who are assisting in the hurricane cleanup efforts. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The USO came to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to get help from members and staffers in their efforts to send 1,500 care packages to National Guard members deployed to Florida and Texas to assist with Hurricanes Harvey and Irma relief.

Hundreds of staffers and several members pitched in and helped the organization reach that goal within two hours. 

House Retirement Tide Is Coming
Current number of House members retiring is far below average

With Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s upcoming retirement, Democrats are favored to pick up her south Florida seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A large crop of House members are likely to retire in the coming months, not necessarily because President Donald Trump is polarizing, the parties are divided, or Capitol Hill is “dysfunctional” — but because 40 years of history tell us it’s going to happen.

Since 1976, 22 House members, on average, have retired each cycle without seeking another office. Thus far this cycle, just five members fit that description: Republicans John J. Duncan Jr. of Tennessee, Lynn Jenkins of Kansas, Sam Johnson of Texas, and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, and Democrat Niki Tsongas of Massachusetts.

Word on the Hill: Dinosaurs at the Capitol
Kennedy on the Cajun Navy, and Shaw’s Tavern fundraiser

Dozens of dinosaurs took to the Capitol steps on Wednesday. (Service Year via Twitter)

Congress is out but there were still plenty of dinosaurs at the Capitol on Wednesday. Dozens of people dressed in orange and brown dinosaur costumes rallied to stop what they called national service extinction.

The group, Service Year Alliance, is asking Congress to vote against President Donald Trump’s proposed budget cuts to YouthBuild, the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps programs.

Word on the Hill: McCain Sends Off Cardinals
Murkowski’s garden, Walzmakes a new friend, shuffling staffers, and wine

Sen John McCain talks with, from left, wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, quarterback Carson Palmer, and team president Michael Bidwill at the Arizona Cardinals’ training camp. (azcardinals.com)

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., dropped into the Arizona Cardinals last day of training camp to wish the team well in the coming season.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey visited the team Wednesday and McCain made his appearance at the University of Phoenix Stadium on Thursday, Arizona Sports reported. The senator chatted with players Larry Fitzgerald, Carson Palmer and David Johnson and the team’s president, Michael Bidwill.

Democrats Say Bannon’s Ouster Not Enough
Jeffries says ‘things won't change if Grand Wizard remains in Oval Office’

Democrats say the ouster of White House adviser Steve Bannon is a good first step. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

Democrats are glad President Donald Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon is gone,  but they say change is needed from the top down.

Democratic members of Congress hammered the president for choosing Bannon, the former Breitbart executive, to plot strategy in the White House in the first place. And they said if the president wants to repair the damage he has done, he should look inward.

Word on the Hill: Weekend Plans?
WOTH will be back mid-August

It's finally the weekend so get out of the Capitol — and the capital. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

It’s the weekend in Washington and the Senate recess has finally arrived, so pick up a book from our summer reading list, or if you're feeling active, try to beat the number of steps that Rep. Tim Walz, D-Minn., takes in a day.

HOH went for a walk with the congressman recently and ran some errands around the complex with him.

 Walz Walks for Wellness
 

Veterans in Congress Criticize Trump’s Military Transgender Ban
Pushback against policy announcement is bipartisan

Sen. Tammy Duckworth called President Trump’s announcement banning transgender individuals from the military “discriminatory and counterproductive.”  (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Veterans in Congress from across the political spectrum pushed back against President Donald Trump’s announcement banning transgender individuals from serving in the U.S. military.

In a series of tweets Wednesday morning, Trump said that based on the advice of military experts, transgender individuals would no longer be allowed to “serve in any capacity in U.S. Military.” The president cited medical costs and unit disruption as part of his reasoning.

House Democrats Tank Two Suspension Bills
Pelosi: Bill not problematic, suspension is

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., participates in the House Democrats' news conference on health care reform in the Capitol on Thursday, July 20, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Republicans hoping to quickly clear some must-pass items from their to-do list before August recess brought up two bills Monday under a fast-track procedure only to have Democrats shoot them down.

Both an intelligence reauthorization bill and legislation renewing funding for a veterans’ health program were brought to the House floor under suspension of the rules, a process that requires two-thirds support for passage and bypasses. Both failed.

At the Races: Democrats Announce for Wide Swath of Congressional Races

Angie Craig, the Democratic Farmer Labor candidate in Minnesota's 2nd District in 2016, announced on Monday she's running again. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats continued to announce their intentions for several congressional races on Monday, which ranged from tossup match-ups to crowded primary races to nearly hopeless cases in heavily Republican states. 

Angie Craig lost last year’s open-seat race in Minnesota’s 2nd District by less than 2 points. On Monday, the Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidate announced she’d try to unseat last year’s rival, freshman GOP Rep. Jason Lewis.