LaHoods Take The Hill

Speaker John A. Boehner greets Rep. Darin LaHood during a swearing-in ceremony in the Capitol before the actual one on the House floor. Also pictured are LaHood's his sons Teddy, 8, McKay, 13, and wife Kristen. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The LaHoods were in full force on Capitol Hill on Thursday.  

On the chamber floor, Darin was being sworn in as the next Republican to represent Illinois' 18th congressional district, shaking hands with new colleagues and casting his first vote as a member of the House.  

In the Speaker's Lobby, his father, Ray, was holding court with nostalgic reporters and a brood of overexcited grandchildren.  

The elder LaHood is, of course, previously represented Illinois in the House before leaving in 2009 to be secretary of Transportation. No longer a public official, the gregarious 69-year-old enjoyed speaking to familiar faces in the congressional press corps and bragging about his son.  

"Look-it," said Ray LaHood, proving he hasn't lost his trademark rhetorical tic  in the time he's left office. "Darin's gonna be a good member. He watched me in public service for 35 years and thought enough of the work we did that he wanted to be a part of this body, and that's what I'm most proud about."  

Asked whether he thought Darin would be an advocate for a long-term highway bill, the long-time advocate of transportation and infrastructure investments didn't bite: "I'm not gonna talk to him about issues, or his votes."  

He did, however, reveal that the new Rep. LaHood had done some redecorating in his congressional office.  

In the years between Ray's departure and Darin's arrival via special election, Illinois' 18th District was in the care of Republican Aaron Schock, the wunderkind exercise enthusiast who had to resign earlier this year after coming under fire for ethics violations and the humiliation of pursuing a lavish makeover of his Capitol Hill suite to resemble rooms from the show "Downton Abbey."  

"It's been repainted," Ray LaHood informed the press corps. "It's eggshell white, very dull. Very dull."

Darin LaHood Inherits Plain Old Office Space

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