Politics

Can You Tell August Recess (Kinda Sorta) Is Almost Here?

Messaging votes, floods in the Capitol, stinky gas and boatloads of cash

Rep. Steve Knight, R-Calif., leaves the House after the last votes of the week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

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It’s almost time for the kinda-sorta August recess (with the House leaving after next week for a month, and the Senate, not so much) and that means there will be no shortage of messaging votes set up by Republican leaders so their members can head back to the hustings and brandish their votes before November’s midterm elections. 

Earlier this week, the House voted Wednesday on a pro-U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (nonbinding) resolution, then on Thursday found some time for another nonbinder, saying any kind of carbon taxes were bad. 

Both resolutions passed. And now expect more in the lead-up to the elections. Lindsey McPherson broke down some of the thinking in her story about the strategy and how members feel about such votes

Not to be left out, the Senate passed a resolution on Thursday stating that the White House should not turn over American diplomats or soldiers over the Russians for interrogation. Hard to believe that was necessary, but there we are. 

Capitol Day to Remember

7-28-98.U.S. CAPITOL-- U.S. Capitol Police officer T.J. Wissemann hugs fellow officer S.I. Flax to console him.Flax had become emotional after the bodies of U.S. Capitol Police officers John Gibson and Jacob J. Chestnut who were slain while guarding the Capitol arrived to lay in state in the Rotunda. .CONGRESSIONAL QUARTERLY PHOTO BY DOUGLAS GRAHAM
Capitol Police officer T.J. Wissemann hugs fellow officer S.I. Flax to console him on July 28, 1998. Flax had become emotional after the bodies of Capitol Police officers John M. Gibson and Jacob J. Chestnut, who were slain while guarding the Capitol, arrived to lie in honor in the Rotunda. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call file photo)

July 24, 1998, marked a day of heroism and sacrifice on Capitol Hill. Twenty years ago, a schizophrenic man with a gun walked into the U.S. Capitol, looking to do harm. The shootout that followed left dead Capitol Police Detective John M. Gibson and Officer Jacob J. Chestnut, who both saved the lives of House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, his staff and countless others. The incident changed the Capitol community forever, boosting momentum for construction of the Capitol Visitor Center and much of the security we experience today.

Check out Roll Call’s short documentary of that day, featuring interviews with DeLay, former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a doctor who treated those on the scene, Capitol Police Chief Matthew R. Verderosa and Roll Call alum and current Axios chief Jim VandeHei.

Watch: 20 Years Ago, a Deadly Shooting in the Capitol Changed Life on the Hill Forever

This Week’s Podcast

Political Theater
Political Theater

What’s up with all the cash that Democratic House candidates are raising? Some of them are exceeding the hauls being brought in by Senate candidates in competitive races. Roll Call political correspondents extraordinaire Simone Pathé and Bridget Bowman explain what’s up on the latest Political Theater podcast: Democrats Cashing In on 2018 Midterms.

Water Cannon

Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., fixes his tie as he emerges from the Cannon Tunnel after heavy rains caused Capitol Police to close the walkway due to flooding on Tuesday, July 17, 2018. Capitol Police closed the tunnel (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., fixes his tie as he emerges from the Cannon tunnel after heavy rains caused Capitol Police to close the walkway due to flooding on Tuesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sometimes, stuff just happens.

Witness the flooding in the tunnel connecting the Cannon House Office Building to the Capitol, brought on by the torrential rain earlier this week. It might happen with regularity, but when it does, someone has to get out the wet/dry vacuums and clean it up. 

Or the gas line leak outside the Hart Senate Office Building, which stank up the Senate side of the world and prompted an evacuation (and nasty traffic backup on Capitol Hill.) 

Our newest Roll Caller, Katherine Tully-McManus, has got it covered (and much more!)

The Kicker

UNITED STATES - JULY 18: Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., eats a corn dog during the American Meat Institute's annual Hot Dog Lunch in the Rayburn courtyard on July 18, 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., eats a corn dog during the American Meat Institute’s annual Hot Dog Lunch in the Rayburn courtyard on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

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