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Shira T. Center


Shira T. Center (née Toeplitz) is the politics editor for Roll Call. One of the Beltway’s best campaign reporters and analysts, she has covered politics from Alaska to New Hampshire and everywhere in between for nearly a decade.

During her tenure at Roll Call, 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. An authority on congressional races, Shira spearheaded her publication's coverage of the decennial redistricting process following the U.S. Census. She possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of the demographics and geography of Congressional districts and she can articulate the intricacies of voting rights laws in digestible and interesting ways.

A frequent guest on cable news programs, Shira has offered commentary on politics and campaigns for ABC, CBS, CNN, CNBC, 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.

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 currently lives in D.C.’s Adams Morgan neighborhood with her husband and cat, who are also Steelers fans.

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Media Appearances by Shira T. Center


Stories by Shira T. Center:

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.

Shop Talk: Entire New Hampshire Democratic Party Slate Unopposed

Jan. 21, 2013

As the saying goes, there are only two ways to run a race: scared or unopposed.

Minnesota GOP Faces Rocky Path to Recovery in 2014

Jan. 17, 2013

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when the Republican Party of Minnesota hit rock bottom.

Five Races to Watch in 2013

Jan. 14, 2013

After a hard-fought and highly charged presidential battle in 2012 — not to mention Congressional races and redistricting — one might hope that 2013 would provide a respite from campaign politics. No such luck.

Iowa: Braley's Gubernatorial Aspirations and Tea Leaves for Harkin's Re-Election Decision

Jan. 14, 2013

Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley has stepped up his interest in running for governor of Iowa in 2014, according to a weekend report in the Des Moines Register.

Biden Embraces Beltway Insider Role With Eye on 2016

Jan. 13, 2013

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s bona fides as the ultimate Capitol Hill creature have gotten a significant boost since the November elections, first in the fiscal cliff negotiations and now via the gun violence task force he’s leading.

Shop Talk: DCCC Rounds Out Senior Staff, Including Many Returning Aides

Jan. 8, 2013

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will announce more senior staff hires Wednesday — a roster that includes many returning aides from the 2012 cycle.

Illinois: Cook County CAO Robin Kelly Wins Top Spot on Special Election Ballot

Jan. 8, 2013

Democrat Robin Kelly hit the jackpot — sort of.

Illinois: Filing Period Closes for Jackson Special Election

Jan. 7, 2013

Twenty-two candidates filed to run in the special election for former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.’s seat before Monday’s deadline.

Reading the Tea Leaves for 2014 and Beyond in Cliff Vote

Jan. 2, 2013

Late-night votes on the fiscal cliff package capped off New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day this week — and delivered the first politically significant vote of the 2014 cycle.

Minnesota: Paulsen Senate Bid Not So 'Ridiculous' After All

Jan. 2, 2013

Updated 8:01 p.m. | For a brief period on Wednesday it appeared Republicans could count Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minn., out of the race against Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., in 2014.

Gun Violence Plays Heavily in Illinois Special

Dec. 19, 2012

There were headline-grabbing mass shootings in Tucson, Ariz.; Aurora, Colo.; and Newtown, Conn. — and then there’s daily life in Chicago.

Hawaii: Hanabusa Will Apply for Appointment to Inouye's Seat

Dec. 19, 2012

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, D-Hawaii, will apply for an appointment to succeed the late Democratic Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, who died Monday.

Hanabusa Appointment Would Risk House Seat

Dec. 18, 2012

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie must pick a successor to the late Sen. Daniel K. Inouye from a list of three Democrats submitted by the state party.

White House Vows Action on Gun Control; Details Scarce

Dec. 17, 2012

President Barack Obama has raised the stakes for national action to reduce gun violence following the Newtown, Conn., elementary school massacre, but the White House and top Democrats in Congress continue to choose their words carefully on a subject that has bedeviled the party for two decades.

Manchin Open to New Gun Control Conversation

Dec. 17, 2012

West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III, who has had the support of the National Rifle Association, joined the call for a conversation about new gun control measures Monday in the aftermath of the Dec. 14 mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school.

Illinois: Democrats Still Divided on 2nd District Candidate

Dec. 17, 2012

Southside Chicago Democrats have failed to agree on a consensus candidate for the 2nd District special election.

Senate Appointment Dicey for Bay State Members

Dec. 17, 2012

A trio of tenured Massachusetts House Democrats have lusted after statewide office for decades, and with Sen. John Kerry’s imminent appointment to be secretary of State, they finally have their best shot.

Michigan Fight Symbolizes Coming Changes in Delegation

Dec. 13, 2012

Michigan once served as a national bastion for organized labor, economic prosperity and moderate Republicans. Not anymore.

Huelskamp Sounds Off on Losing Committee Spots

Dec. 13, 2012

Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas learned last week that he and three other Republicans were stripped of key committees assignments by the House Steering Committee, which is under the control of Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio.

Members Eye Opportunities in Gubernatorial Races

Dec. 10, 2012

Members of Congress looking to ascend the political food chain — and leave Washington, D.C. — will have a plethora of opportunities in 2014.

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