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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:

Harry Reid Defends Capitol Police Leadership

March 3, 2015

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, asked Tuesday about lingering concerns over the Capitol Police Department's handling of a controversial State of the Union night car chase, said the force does a "masterful job."

The Nevada Democrat, who put himself through law school working as a Capitol Police officer, called himself a "stalwart defender and protector" of the force, saying they have "a job that is very, very difficult.

"I try not to be critical — if I am critical it’s constructive in nature, and I’m not going to be picking apart something that’s, 'Somebody doesn’t like the chief or the sergeant at arms.' I’m not going to get into that," Reid said.

Issa 'Unapologetic' After Sneaking #BibiSpeech Photos

March 3, 2015

Speaker John A. Boehner tried to lay down the law against members taking photos on the House floor six days ago, but the scolding didn’t stick with at least one Republican.

Harry Reid Sticks Up for Capitol Police Leadership (Video)

March 3, 2015

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, asked Tuesday about lingering concerns over the Capitol Police Department’s handling of a controversial State of the Union night car chase, said the force does a “masterful job.”

Code Pink Feeling Stifled by Capitol Police Crackdown

Feb. 27, 2015

Forced into handcuffs before and after congressional hearings over the past two days, protesters organizing with Code Pink are fuming about the beefed-up presence of Capitol Police when contentious, high-profile officials testify on Capitol Hill.

Kerry Bentivolio Files for Bankruptcy

Feb. 26, 2015

Fewer than two months after the Santa Claus impersonator and reindeer farmer who represented southeast Michigan for one term left Congress, the tea party-inspired Republican has filed for bankruptcy.

Private Plane Rides Have Bumpy Congressional History

Feb. 26, 2015

Among the serious accusations of improper spending leveled at Rep. Aaron Schock since The Washington Post shined a spotlight on his “Downton Abbey”-themed office are at least a dozen flights aboard his political donors’ private planes.

Officer Morale a Hot Topic for Capitol Police at Appropriations Hearing

Feb. 25, 2015

Low morale among Capitol Police was a hot topic for law enforcement officials on Wednesday during a series of panels convened by the House lawmakers who set the department’s budget.

Wasserman Schultz Fillets House Counsel Over Cost of Boehner Lawsuit

Feb. 25, 2015

The top Democrat on the House Appropriations Legislative Branch Subcommittee took advantage of a rare opportunity to grill the chamber’s top lawyer on the cost of Speaker John A. Boehner’s lawsuit against President Barack Obama.

Could Reid Sport Shades on Senate Floor?

Feb. 24, 2015

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid can sport his sunglasses inside, but can he wear such wayfarers on the Senate floor?

Court Reinstates FMLA Complaint Against Capitol Police

Feb. 23, 2015

A Capitol Police officer who sued the department in April 2012 with allegations of Family and Medical Leave Act interference and retaliation won a small victory in District of Columbia appeals court on Feb. 20 when the court reinstated her claim.

Capitol Police Chief's Leadership Questioned

Feb. 23, 2015

The State of the Union night car chase that ended without arrest added new strains to already tense relationships inside the law enforcement community on Capitol Hill.

Former Rep. Cass Ballenger Dies at 88

Feb. 18, 2015

Updated Feb. 20 | Former North Carolina Rep. Cass Ballenger, a pro-business conservative and Republican ally of Hugo Chavez known for his off-the-cuff comments, died Wednesday after a prolonged illness. He was 88.

No New Confidence in Metro After Hearing on L'Enfant Incident

Feb. 13, 2015

Despite intense scrutiny from lawmakers and federal safety regulators in the month since the deadly Metro incident that sent dozens of riders to the hospital and resulted in one death, local transit and public safety officials haven’t convinced passengers that the Jan. 12 emergency couldn’t happen again.

Farenthold's Office Denies 'Sexual Fantasies' About Fired Staffer

Feb. 13, 2015

Two months after a discrimination lawsuit accused Rep. Blake Farenthold of creating a hostile, sexually charged work environment, the Texas Republican claims his former communications director was fired for not showing up to work and lying about the circumstances of her absence.

Immigration Protests in Capitol Offices Strain Police

Feb. 12, 2015

Tears welling in her eyes, Maria Sotomayor explained to a staffer in the office of Rep. Lou Barletta how the Pennsylvania Republican put her family at risk by attempting to dismantle President Barack Obama’s executive orders on immigration.

House Ethics Committee Briefly Opens Its Doors

Feb. 12, 2015

The public got a rare glimpse inside the House Ethics Committee on Thursday morning, when the secretive panel convened to determine its rules and oversight plan for the 114th Congress.

Phone Scammers Target Congressional Offices

Feb. 11, 2015

Security officials are warning Capitol Hill employees to be alert for telephone scams targeting congressional offices, a reminder that Internet-calling technology makes phone calls as big a threat to Congress as cyberattacks.

Capitol Police Diversity Officer Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement

Feb. 10, 2015

Nearly 10 months after she was escorted from Capitol Police headquarters, the civilian employee who headed the department’s Office of Diversity pleaded guilty to embezzling public money during her previous employment at Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

A Campaign Finance-Minded Don Quixote of Congress

Feb. 5, 2015

Ask Rep. Ted Deutch about the fresh kiwi-hued paint job in his Rayburn office, and the Florida Democrat has a schtick: “Green, like the money we want to get out of politics.”

Army Veteran Arrested for Threatening Capitol Shooting

Feb. 5, 2015

A Maryland man who allegedly threatened this week to come to the Capitol and shoot an employee has been arrested and charged, according to the U.S. attorney for the District of Maryland.

Capitol Police Make Rapid Response to CodePink Protesters After McCain Outrage

Feb. 5, 2015

Order was promptly restored when CodePink activists disrupted a Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, one week after Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., was “raising hell” about a delayed response by Capitol Police.

Stabbing Delays Metro Trains at Federal Center SW

Feb. 4, 2015

A stabbing incident related to a snatch-and-run theft delayed trains Wednesday afternoon at Federal Center SW station, Metro officials said.

Capitol Police Drug Bust Goes Bust

Feb. 4, 2015

A New York man arrested on Dec. 23 in one of the biggest drug busts in recent Capitol Police history had his case dismissed in January, when the government failed to produce a witness.

Lawmakers Line Up for Throat Blessings in Speaker's Lobby

Feb. 3, 2015

Nearly one third of Congress is Catholic, and that made Tuesday, the feast day of Saint Blaise of Sebaste, a busy one for House Chaplain the Rev. Patrick J. Conroy.

Jim Moran Doesn't Miss Congress

Jan. 30, 2015

For the record, ex-Rep. James P. Moran doesn’t miss Congress. At least, “not yet.”

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