Roger Wicker

The Last of the Gingrich Revolutionaries
Come January, the GOP class of 1994 could be down to seven

From left, Reps. Mac Thornberry of Texas, Steve Chabot of Ohio and Walter B. Jones of North Carolina are among the few remaining members of the Class of 1994 still serving in Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photos)

It was nearly 24 years ago that Republicans swept into power in stunning fashion, ending 40 years of Democratic rule in the House.

But those 73 new Republicans who came to the House and 11 who came to the Senate on the 1994 wave engineered by Georgia Republican Newt Gingrich and his “Contract with America” have now dwindled down to a handful, and after this election only seven will likely be left in Congress.

Police Investigate ‘Ricin Letter’ at Sen. Susan Collins’ Home
Maine GOP senator was not at home when authorities arrived

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, was not at home in Bangor when the authorities arrived to investigate a suspicious letter. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 8:53 p.m. | Republican Sen. Susan Collins will be able to spend Monday night at her residence in Bangor, Maine, after a suspicious letter was received by her husband there.

“Senator Collins’s husband, Tom Daffron, today received a threatening letter that the writer claimed was contaminated with ricin, a highly hazardous substance which was used in a previous attack against the United States Senate,” Collins spokeswoman Annie Clark said in a statement.

As Dems Campaign on Pre-Existing Conditions, 10 Republicans Move In
Tillis touts ‘common-sense’ solution, Murray calls it a ‘gimmick’

As the 2010 health care law weathers its latest legal challenge, Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., has introduced a bill aimed at pre-existing conditions. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Ten Senate Republicans on Friday released a bill meant to guarantee the protections for patients with pre-existing conditions included in the 2010 health care law.

The measure is a response to the latest legal challenge to the health law, which seeks to invalidate the law after Congress effectively ended the so-called “individual mandate” that requires most Americans to maintain health insurance coverage or pay a fine.

Photos of the Week: Summer Arrives in Earnest on Capitol Hill
The week of June 25 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., takes a shot as the Democratic team captain Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., looks on from the golf cart during the First Tee’s Congressional Challenge annual golf tournament at the Columbia Country Club golf course Monday. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Congress has left town for the 4th of July recess week. As the jet fumes fade, the heat is up in the swamp with temperatures expected in the high 90s. We hope your air conditioner is functioning properly.

Before lawmakers left, the Senate passed several appropriations bills, but the process could slow as the chamber’s focus will presumably shift toward a possible Supreme Court nominee. (President Donald Trump is reportedly considering names now.)

Seersucker, Hemp and the Caps: Congressional Hits and Misses
Week of June 4, 2018

D.C. is abuzz with the Washington Capitals’ first Stanley Cup win on Thursday night, but the U.S. Capitol was abuzz all week with talk of hemp products, seersucker suits and walking trails to Vermont.

Photos of the Week: A Moose, Some Ducks and a Stanley Cup
The week of June 4 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Caps fans celebrate on G Street NW on Thursday shortly before the Washington Capitals defeated the Vegas Knights 4-3 to capture the team’s first Stanley Cup. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

We’re All Caps at Roll Call this Friday. We captured some of the celebrations Thursday night of the Washington Capitals’ defeat of the Las Vegas Knights to win the Stanley Cup.

Also this week, there were several foodie activities on the Hill, a large moose in the Senate’s Hart Building for the Experience New Hampshire event put on by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and a look at the ducks on the National Mall (if you don’t know the history of the ducks in the nation’s capital, read this and watch this).

Photos of the Day: It’s Seersucker Season
Summer Thursdays in the Senate have an optional dress code

Sens. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., walk to a barbecue lunch in celebration of Seersucker Thursday. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

It’s the first Seersucker Thursday in the Senate for 2018.

The tradition of wearing these lighter-fabric suits re-emerged in the late 1990s at the urging of former Majority Leader Trent Lott. The Mississippi Republican wanted to show that “the Senate isn’t just a bunch of dour folks wearing dark suits and — in the case of men — red or blue ties,” according to the Senate historian.

Senate GOP May Move Trump FCC Pick With Earlier Nominee
Pair would move in tandem, as is tradition to ensure parity

FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn has announced plans to step aside, and her likely replacement, Geoffrey Starks, might need to be paired with another nominee to secure a vote. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Geoffrey Starks, President Donald Trump’s pick to be the next Democrat on the Federal Communications Commission, may need a partner on the road to Senate confirmation: FCC member Brendan Carr, whose renomination has been delayed since January.

Trump announced over the weekend that he would nominate Starks, a candidate recommended by Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., to replace Mignon Clyburn. Clyburn, who is the daughter of Rep. James E. Clyburn, D-S.C., said in April that she wants to step aside in the near future after serving more than eight years on the panel.

Court Sides With Employers Over Workers in Arbitration Case
Gorsuch: Court not free to substitute economic policies for those chosen by people’s representatives

Neil Gorsuch, Supreme Court Justice nominee, right, opens the door for Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., before a meeting with Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., in the Dirksen Building last year. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A sharply divided Supreme Court ruled Monday that arbitration clauses in employment contracts can prevent workers from pursuing class-action lawsuits on minimum wage and overtime disputes, prompting some justices to call for congressional action to protect workers’ rights.

In the 5-4 opinion, the conservative justices sided with corporate interests to find that Congress, in a 1925 law, instructed federal courts to enforce arbitration agreements according to their own terms. That includes terms that require individual — and not class — proceedings.

Trump Orders New Syria Strikes After Assad Chemical Attack
U.S. warns Assad there will be further retaliation for future chemical attacks

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Ross fires a tomahawk land attack missile during a Trump administration strike on Syrian government targets last April. (Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Robert S. Price)

The U.S. military — together with French and British forces — struck three targets inside Syria on Friday night, just days after Bashar Assad’s government allegedly carried out a chemical attack on a Damascus suburb and amid new U.S.-Russia tensions.

In a televised address, President Donald Trump announced that strikes against Assad's forces were “now underway.”