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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:

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.

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.

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.

Pennsylvania: Schwartz for Governor?

Dec. 7, 2012

Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz made waves Friday morning by picking up a new finance director with statewide experience. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported the Democratic lawmaker’s hire of Aubrey Montgomery fuels speculation she’s looking at running for governor of Pennsylvania in 2014.

More Redistricting Ahead in Texas, Maybe Florida

Dec. 5, 2012

A handful of members shouldn’t get too comfortable in the districts where they just won. Those districts might be changing soon.

Illinois: Special Election Candidate Charged With Trying to Bring Gun on Plane

Dec. 5, 2012

State Sen. Donne Trotter, a Democratic candidate in the 2nd District special election, has been charged with trying to bring a weapon onto a plane at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.

Illinois: Democratic Field Solidifies for 2nd District Special Election

Dec. 3, 2012

At least seven well-known Democrats will run in next year’s special primary for former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.’s seat on the south side of Chicago.

Running for Congress? Try, Try Again

Dec. 2, 2012

Running for Congress? The second time might be the charm.

South Dakota: Club for Growth 'Not Focused' on Rounds

Nov. 29, 2012

The conservative Club for Growth is taking a hands-off approach to former Gov. Michael Rounds’ Senate bid — at least for now.

Inside the 2014 Senate Races

Nov. 28, 2012

Roll Call’s initial Senate ratings outlook projects a potentially bullish cycle for Republicans, with an opportunity to recapture the majority for the first time in eight years.

Illinois: Ex-Rep. Reynolds to Run for Former Seat in Special Election

Nov. 28, 2012

Disgraced former Rep. Mel Reynolds, a Democrat, will announced Wednesday afternoon that he’s seeking the Illinois 2nd District seat he once held, according to The Associated Press.

Illinois: Harris to Play Ball in 2nd District Special Election

Nov. 27, 2012

Count former NFL linebacker Napoleon Harris in for Illinois’ 2nd District special election.

Jackson Resignation Spurs Crowded Race for the House in Chicagoland

Nov. 26, 2012

The resignation of Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr. has opened a pipeline of aspiring Chicago Democrats eyeing the vacant seat.

lllinois: Halvorson Jumps Into Jackson Special

Nov. 26, 2012

Former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, D-Ill., will run in the special election to replace her former political nemesis, former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.

Illinois: Governor Schedules Feb. 26 Special Election Primary

Nov. 26, 2012

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has scheduled a Feb. 26 special election primary for former Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr.’s seat.

West Virginia: Capito Running for Senate

Nov. 25, 2012

Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia will announce a bid for the Senate on Monday, taking aim at Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller, Roll Call has confirmed.

NRCC Took Out $12 Million Loan in October

Nov. 16, 2012

House Republicans borrowed $12 million in the waning weeks before Election Day, according to a source with knowledge of the transaction.

Senate Republicans Pick Moran to Run NRSC

Nov. 14, 2012

Senate Republicans unanimously elected Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran to serve as chairman of their campaign arm for the 2014 cycle and also named Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio and Sen.-elect Ted Cruz of Texas to serve as vice chairmen of the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

Portman, Cruz to Serve as NRSC Vice Chairmen

Nov. 14, 2012

Updated 3:37 p.m.| Senate Republicans named Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio and Sen.-elect Ted Cruz of Texas to serve as vice chairmen of the National Republican Senatorial Committee on Wednesday.

Israel Returns for Second Round as Chairman of the DCCC

Nov. 14, 2012

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi announced Wednesday to colleagues that the caucus campaign chief, New York Rep. Steve Israel, will stay on for a second cycle.

Cornyn Sees Lessons From 2012 Defeats

Nov. 14, 2012

Looking back on his role as National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee chairman, Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said he believes Republicans will learn from this election cycle’s defeats to improve the way the party works with candidates and campaigns.

Can Moran Lead the GOP to Majority?

Nov. 13, 2012

If Senate Republicans are looking for a dream candidate to improve the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s fortunes, they won’t get much of a choice Wednesday, despite their private grumbling.

Portman Rules Out NRSC Bid

Nov. 13, 2012

Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio will not run for National Republican Senatorial Committee chairman in Wednesday’s leadership elections, according to a GOP aide familiar with his decision.

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