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Shira T. Center


Shira T. Center (née Toeplitz) is the politics editor for Roll Call, where she oversees and assigns the publication's election coverage, including the "At the Races" blog. Under Shira's leadership, the politics desk traveled to cover 36 different House and Senate races from the ground in two dozen states during the midterms. Her team regularly breaks news on the cycle's most-watched congressional races, covering more contests than competitors and keeping the ultimate Capitol Hill insider in mind.

One of the Beltway’s best campaign reporters and analysts, she has covered politics from Alaska to New Hampshire and everywhere in between for a decade. An authority on congressional races, Shira possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of the demographics and geography of House districts. She spearheaded Roll Call's coverage of the decennial redistricting process following the U.S. Census. Also during her tenure, Shira was the first national reporter to interview Sen. Al Franken after his election and the last to do an extended interview with Sarah Palin before she was selected as the GOP vice-presidential pick.

A frequent guest on cable news programs, Shira regularly offers commentary on politics and campaigns for CNN, MSNBC and FOX. She has been a featured speaker at her alma mater, Northwestern University, as well as at American University and the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University. She regularly speaks to Running Start, a nonpartisan program for collegiate women in politics, and serves on that group's Advisory Council.

In 2014, Shira served as a resident fellow at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics — one of the youngest professionals ever selected for the program. During the spring semester, she planned and led a series of eight discussions on women, media and congressional elections. Also that year, Shira won CQ Roll Call's Leadership Award for collaboration and innovation.

Shira has worked in Washington as a political reporter and writer since 2005. She was formerly a staff writer for Politico and for National Journal’s the Hotline, and her writing has also appeared in the Washington Post and Washingtonian.

Shira graduated from Northwestern University with a B.A. in political science, earning honors for her thesis on gender and political communications. Shira hails from Pittsburgh and is an avid Steelers fan.

She no longer works for CQ Roll Call.

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Media Appearances by Shira T. Center


Stories by Shira T. Center:

Members Cough Up $4.3M for DCCC

April 17, 2013

House Democrats’ campaign arm raised an unprecedented $22.6 million in the first quarter of this year, thanks in large part to member contributions, committee officials say.

Hey, Big (House Race) Spender!

April 17, 2013

Running a congressional campaign can be expensive. But it’s rare for House members to spend almost as much as they raised in the first quarter of a two-year election cycle.

Illinois: Rodney Davis Raises $401K in First Quarter

April 10, 2013

Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill., raised just north of $401,000 in his first full fundraising quarter in Congress, according to figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call.

Illinois: Republican Preps for Foster Challenge With D.C. Trip

April 10, 2013

State Rep. Darlene Senger will meet with Republicans in Washington, D.C., this week in preparation to challenge Democratic Rep. Bill Foster next year.

Remainders: #BluegrassGate

April 9, 2013

Maybe you were hiding under a rock today. Or stuck in multiple, hours-long meetings. Or outside enjoying the unseasonably nice Washington, D.C., weather.

Pennsylvania: Schwartz Officially Enters Race for Governor

April 8, 2013

Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz, D-Pa., has officially entered the race for governor, filing paperwork Monday to run against GOP Gov. Tom Corbett.

NRSC to GOP Consultants: Got Any Better Ideas?

April 4, 2013

Want a lucrative consulting contract from the National Republican Senatorial Committee or one of their top candidates this cycle? First, a few questions.

West Virginia: Capito Raises $915,000 for Senate Bid

April 3, 2013

Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., has kicked off her Senate campaign with strong fundraising, bringing in $915,000 in her first full quarter as a statewide candidate.

3 Reasons Why Don Young Is Alaska's Political Teflon

March 29, 2013

Longtime Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, drew anger from colleagues and voters when he referred to Hispanic farm workers as “wetbacks” this week. Young tried to explain the slur as outdated terminology from his youth, even as Speaker John A. Boehner demanded he apologize.

NRCC Makes Small Ad Buys In Arizona, Georgia, Minnesota

March 29, 2013

The National Republican Congressional Committee has bought airtime in three television markets in the next week, according to a Democrat and a Republican who monitor media buys.

Arkansas: Pryor Disses Bloomberg's Gun Control Media Blitz

March 25, 2013

The first sign that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s $12 million gun control ad campaign targeting senators might not go as planned?

DSCC Raises $500,000 From Ryan Budget Affront

March 18, 2013

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee raised $500,000 in its recent campaign attacking House Republicans — and possible Senate candidates — for supporting Rep. Paul D. Ryan’s budget blueprint, according to fundraising figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call.

Michigan: Scott Romney Not Running for Senate Source Says

March 12, 2013

Scott Romney will not run for the open Michigan Senate seat in 2014, according to a state GOP source who spoke with Romney late on Tuesday.

Michigan: Scott Romney Considering Senate Bid

March 8, 2013

Scott Romney, GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s brother, is looking at running for retiring Democratic Sen. Carl Levin’s seat, according to a Michigan GOP source with first-hand knowledge of his interest.

House Democrats Cash In With Online Fundraising Program

Feb. 18, 2013

It’s usually easier to bring in big bucks when your party holds the speaker’s gavel. But last cycle, House Democrats crushed their competitors thanks to a dramatic spike in online fundraising.

David Joyce: Ohio's Most Vulnerable GOP Target

Feb. 10, 2013

It’s all uphill from here for GOP freshman Rep. David Joyce.

Illinois: Rush, Davis to Endorse Kelly in Special Election for Jackson Seat

Feb. 9, 2013

Illinois Reps. Danny K. Davis and Bobby L. Rush are wading into the crowded special election to replace former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.

Illinois: Harris Drops Out, Backs Kelly in Special

Jan. 30, 2013

And then there were 21 … candidates to succeed former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr., D-Ill.

Illinois: Bloomberg Super PAC Targets Halvorson With Negative Ads

Jan. 29, 2013

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Independence USA PAC has started airing TV ads in Illinois’ 2nd district special election targeting the front-runner’s support for the Second Amendment.

Illinois: Hutchinson Gets Cook County Board President's Endorsement

Jan. 28, 2013

Illinois state Sen. Toi Hutchinson received the backing of Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle on Monday in the special election for the 2nd District.

Iowa: Braley to Explore Senate Bid for Harkin's Seat

Jan. 27, 2013

Rep. Bruce Braley onSunday publicly acknowledged his interest in running to succeed retiring Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin in 2014.

Iowa: Harkin Retirement Sets Off Open-Seat Scramble in 2014

Jan. 26, 2013

Updated: 11:40 a.m. | Iowa Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin announced on Saturday that he will not seek a sixth term in the chamber. The news was first reported by the Associated Press.

Campaign Committee Scorecard: Outlook for 2014

Jan. 23, 2013

Congressional campaign committees have seen their financial influence wane in the past two cycles with the advent of super PACs. But make no mistake, these entities remain a powerful force in determining the playing field for the midterm elections.

DNC Re-elects Wasserman Schultz; Honda Steps Down as Vice Chairman

Jan. 23, 2013

Democratic National Committee members re-elected Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., as their chairman Tuesday, a committee spokesman confirmed to CQ Roll Call.

DCCC Uses Inauguration to Tout Potential House Recruits

Jan. 22, 2013

Thinking about running for Congress? For hopeful Democrats, there was no better place to be this weekend than hobnobbing with the party elite and donors at inaugural festivities.

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