Russell Building Evacuated After Fire
Saturday night incident under investigation, building still closed Sunday

A fire broke out in the Russell Senate Office Building Saturday night. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Fire and smoke in the Russell Senate Office Building prompted an evacuation Saturday night. The building remains closed Sunday morning.

Capitol Police and the Architect of the Capitol personnel are conducting an investigation and all other personnel will be restricted from entering the building.

Democratic Group Launches Wildfire Ads Against California Congressman
Red to Blue CA is targeting GOP Rep. Tom McClintock in NorCal district

Rep. Tom McClintock, R-Calif., is a DCCC target this cycle. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Democratic outside group is launching a new ad campaign against California Republican Rep. Tom McClintock, accusing him of voting against wildfire assistance last year. The launch comes as the largest wildfire in the state’s history rages in northern California.

Red to Blue CA is coming out with mailers and a digital ad on Facebook linking the congressman from the largely rural 4th District to the wildfire. The group cites his December 2017 vote against an emergency spending bill that offered additional funds to communities recovering from hurricanes and wildfires. The measure did pass the House.

Lawmakers Eyeing Energy Conference for Fire Borrowing Solution
Aim to increase funding for the Forest Service

Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden says sufficiently funding the U.S. Forest Service is one of his top priorities as a member of the energy bill conference committee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

With the Senate voting this week to conference with the House on its energy policy overhaul bill, lawmakers from both chambers are eyeing the conference process as a perfect opportunity to get in place what many say is a needed revamp of how the federal government budgets for its efforts to prevent and fight forest fires.  

The House's legislative package for its energy bill (HR 8) includes measures it passed in 2015 that would ease environmental restrictions related to federal and tribal forest thinning efforts. The Obama administration said it "strongly opposes" the bill (HR 2647) in a statement of administration policy. But some lawmakers say the measure could become less toxic if it included an alternative to a Forest Service practice called “fire borrowing.”  

Capitol Ink | Blow-Dried Blowhard
Donald Trump Plays With Fire

Playing with fire.

Congressional Hits and Misses: Week of June 22, 2015 (Video)

In preparation for their Fourth of July recess, members spent the week counting, texting and describing the concept of fire.