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Hannah Hess


Hannah Hess covers the Capitol campus for Roll Call, reporting on legislative branch agencies, administration of the House and Senate, and Congress’ oversight of the District of Columbia.

Hannah’s political reporting experience includes two statehouse bureaus, and the early stages of the 2012 presidential campaign trail. Prior to joining CQ Roll Call, she covered the Virginia General Assembly, the campaign for the 2012 Iowa caucuses and the Illinois General Assembly. Her work has appeared in the St. Louis Post Dispatch, the Washington Examiner and the Omaha World-Herald. She also interned for what is now CQ Roll Call in 2008, working for Roll Call’s GalleryWatch legislative tracking service that was integrated into CQ in 2009. Originally from Illinois, Hannah holds two degrees from the University of Illinois — a bachelor’s degree in media studies and a master’s degree in public affairs reporting.

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Stories by Hannah Hess:

Protesters Arrested at Fast-Track Trade Hearing

Jan. 27, 2015

Capitol Police arrested three sign-carrying, slogan-shouting demonstrators who disrupted a Tuesday morning Senate Finance Committee hearing on the president’s trade policy agenda.

Conviction of Reid Bundler Upheld, Next Stop: SCOTUS?

Jan. 27, 2015

A prominent Nevada lobbyist convicted of making illegal contributions to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s 2010 re-election campaign is preparing to ask the Supreme Court to revisit campaign finance limits, following a Monday federal appeals court decision.

Driver Arrested in SOTU Car Chase

Jan. 26, 2015

Police in Maryland’s Prince George’s County have arrested the driver who skirted Capitol Hill on State of the Union night in a high-speed chase.

Getting Beyond Budget Scorekeeper's Perennial 'Pissing Contest'

Jan. 26, 2015

Can the new director of the Congressional Budget Office get “beyond the basic pissing contest” of how to score legislation? The former heads of the official scorekeeping agency hope so.

Driver in SOTU Police Chase Had No License, Police Say

Jan. 23, 2015

An officer on the scene of the State of the Union night car chase through Capitol Police jurisdiction says the man briefly handcuffed by police, then allowed to drive away did not have a driver’s license.

Senator on '#DeflateGate': Send Colts to Super Bowl

Jan. 22, 2015

Sen. Dan Coats tweeted Thursday that the Indiana Colts, not the New England Patriots, should play in the Super Bowl, as the National Football League controversy surrounding the use of under-inflated game balls in Sunday’s AFC Championship continued to unfold.

Ethics Complaint Filed Against Gohmert Over Spending Campaign Cash on Travel

Jan. 22, 2015

The most quotable member of Congress may have violated House ethics rules by using campaign cash to cover travel expenses for speaking engagements in England, a liberal watchdog group alleged Thursday.

McConnell's Sergeant-at-Arms Team's Time Together Goes Way Back (Audio)

Jan. 22, 2015

The two men at the helm of the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms office first crossed paths nearly two decades ago as staffers on the chamber’s Appropriations Committee.

Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Larkin on His 9/11 Heroics

Jan. 21, 2015

On Sept. 11, 2001, Frank J. Larkin was a supervisor in the Secret Service’s New York Field Office, located in the World Trade Center. The Senate sergeant-at-arms was later awarded a Medal of Valor for his life-saving actions at Ground Zero.

“When the first tower collapsed, I was actually moving to the center square between the towers,” Larkin told CQ Roll Call during a recent interview in his office on the first floor of the Capitol. “I was leading a group of folks with the intention of getting some folks that had been injured out of that center plaza area. At the same time, we were dodging, unfortunately, folks who were jumping to their deaths, you know, witnessing that, which is something you just never forget.”

Larkin was initially reported missing, and suffered severe respiratory injuries, coughing up blood during the three months he spent leading recovery efforts before being transferred back to Washington.

James Morhard Survived the Plane Crash that Killed Sen. Ted Stevens

Jan. 21, 2015

Deputy Senate SAA James W. Morhard had a harrowing near-death experience in 2010, as a passenger on then-Sen. Ted Stevens’ plane. He narrowly survived a crash in the mountains of Alaska that killed the Republican senator, his former boss, and four others.

McConnell and his wife, former Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, visited Morhard, a longtime Senate aide, in the hospital before when they arrived for Stevens’ funeral. “As much as you know the outer persona, there is a warmness to this man that people don’t see,” Morhard said, recalling how the couple sat with him and held his hand.

“You never forget,” he said. “And, you know, I hope I can give back — as Frank does, too — to this place and also [to] the majority leader.”

Capitol Police Ordered Not to Arrest Driver in SOTU Car Chase

Jan. 21, 2015

The man who engaged police in a high-speed Capitol Hill car chase as the president delivered his State of the Union address Tuesday night was allowed to drive away from the scene after being briefly detained in handcuffs, CQ Roll Call has learned.

Armed Robbery Suspect Arrested Near Capitol During SOTU

Jan. 20, 2015

A man allegedly involved in an armed robbery in Prince George’s County, Md., picked the wrong night to lead police on a car chase to Capitol Hill.

Former Rep. Frank Wolf Will Lead Baylor University's Efforts on Capitol Hill

Jan. 19, 2015

After nearly 35 years representing Northern Virginia in Congress, former Republican Rep. Frank R. Wolf plans to lead Baylor University’s efforts on Capitol Hill.

New Bike Rules, Restrictions for Uber Hit on Tuesday

Jan. 16, 2015

New traffic regulations for the Capitol campus go into effect on Jan. 20, impacting Uber and Lyft drivers and bicyclists, the Capitol Police announced Friday evening.

Congressional Black Caucus Sees Leverage in Steve Scalise Protests

Jan. 16, 2015

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus see opportunity in the scandal that inspired a heart-shaped “KKK + GOP” sign outside a recent Capitol Hill Club fundraiser for House Majority Whip Steve Scalise.

House Sergeant-at-Arms: Congress Is a Top Terrorist Target

Jan. 15, 2015

As the Capitol Hill community digests news of a foiled ISIS-inspired plot to bomb and shoot the complex, law enforcement officials are reminding congressional offices the Capitol is a top target for terrorists.

FBI: Ohio Man Planned to Detonate Pipe Bombs at Capitol

Jan. 14, 2015

FBI agents announced Wednesday they had foiled a Cincinnati-area man’s plot to wage a jihadi attack the Capitol, arresting a 20-year-old who allegedly considered members of Congress his enemies.

André Carson: House Intelligence News 'Fired Up' Tea Party

Jan. 14, 2015

“It fired up the tea party, that’s for sure.”

Abortion Bill Co-Sponsoring Debacle 'Vexing' for Democrat

Jan. 14, 2015

Co-sponsoring a bill in Congress doesn’t really mean all that much. But — maybe — it ought to at least mean a member has agreed to sign on, and will actually sign.

Democrat Laments Abortion Bill Co-Sponsoring Debacle

Jan. 14, 2015

Co-sponsoring a bill in Congress doesn't really mean all that much. But — maybe — it ought to mean a member has agreed to sign on, and will actually sign.

At least, that's the argument Washington Democrat Adam Smith made on the House floor Wednesday.

Smith took to the House podium to lambaste co-sponsorship practices after he was accidentally listed as a co-signer of GOP legislation, authored by Tennessee Republican Diane Black, that would prohibit certain funds to abortion clinics. Smith says he never consented to being listed as a co-sponsor — and first found out about the mishap after a pro-life group started praising him.

"I just rise about a particular issue that happened to me, and I'm sure has happened to other members that you might not be aware of," Smith said on the floor Wednesday. "Other members can sign you on to a piece of legislation without your consent."

L'Enfant Metro Incident Raises Questions About D.C. Emergency Response

Jan. 13, 2015

Monday’s L’Enfant Plaza Metro incident has raised questions about Metro’s response to the situation, whether swifter action could have prevented the injuries and how Washington’s vast law enforcement network communicates in an underground transit disaster.

Ohio Country Club Bartender Indicted After Threatening to Poison Boehner

Jan. 13, 2015

An Ohio man who served drinks to Speaker John A. Boehner at his country club was indicted Jan. 7 on charges he threatened to kill the House’s top Republican — by poisoning his wine.

Demonstrators Plan to Disrupt Scalise Fundraiser

Jan. 13, 2015

Activists plan to protest a private fundraising event for House Majority Whip Steve Scalise Tuesday afternoon, trying to keep pressure on the Louisiana Republican weeks after the revelation that he addressed a meeting of white supremacists in 2002.

Pearce Pushed House Rule Change to Provide 'Protection' in Ethics Cases

Jan. 13, 2015

Reacting to an Office of Congressional Ethics probe of a junior staffer, Rep. Steve Pearce pushed the House to add some stiff new language to its rules governing the OCE and the House Ethics Committee.

Cedric Richmond in Physical Therapy, Unsure He Will Pitch

Jan. 12, 2015

Despite undergoing shoulder surgery the week before Thanksgiving, Rep. Cedric L. Richmond remains confident he will return to the field on June 11 for the 54th Annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game.

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