Happy Monday and welcome back.
This week is packed with things to do around the D.C. area.
Michigan Rep. John Conyers Jr. and Meridian Witt, an 8th grader from Capitol Hill Cluster School, prepare to ring the World Harmony Bell on the Capitol Lawn, a day before the 2007 International Day of Peace. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Today is the International Day of Peace, a day established by the United Nations as an annual commemoration of world peace.
To mark the occasion, the United States Institute of Peace is encouraging people to take the Peace Day Challenge. Some ways make the world around you more peaceful? A promotional video from the institute suggests talking to someone who doesn’t look like you, volunteering for a cause you care about or speaking up when you see someone being intolerant. Post on social media how you observed the day, using the hashtag #PeaceDayChallenge.
Republican Sens. Bob Corker (center), Marco Rubio (seated right) and Jim Risch (standing right) all declined to comment on GOP President Donald Trump's threat to "totally destroy" North Korea if it attacks the United States. Also pictured are GOP Sens. Cory Gardner (standing left) and Ron Johnson (seated left). (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker hurried into an elevator. Sen. Marco Rubio quickly ducked into the Capitol Visitor Center television studio. And Senate Armed Services Chairman John McCain shut down reporters’ repetitive questions.
No Republican senator could be found Tuesday who was willing to question President Donald Trump’s threat before the United Nations General Assembly to “totally destroy” North Korea unless it gives up its nuclear arms and long-range missile programs, which he views as a direct threat to the sovereignty and security of the United States and its allies.
OCT. 19, 2016: Ruben Kihuen, then a Democratic candidate for Nevada’s 4th District, shakes hands with demonstrators in front of the Trump International Hotel Las Vegas during the Culinary Union’s Wall of Taco Trucks protest — the day of the final presidential debate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Every two years, a new crop of freshmen descends on Washington and every two years, Roll Call follows one such member through their first year.
For the 2016 election, Nevada Rep. Ruben Kihuen was one of only several Democrats to unseat a House Republican. His story is similar to those of millions of Americans — his family came to the U.S. seeking a better life — but on Nov. 8, 2016, he became the first formerly undocumented person to be elected to Congress (along with New York Democratic Rep. Adriano Espaillat, who was elected the same day). Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Kihuen’s dreams of playing professional soccer were dashed by an untimely injury. It was then that he turned his attention to politics.
Arizona Sen. John McCain was a prisoner of war in Vietnam for five and a half years. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Today is National POW/MIA Recognition Day, which honors missing service members and their families.
Inhofe said attempts to connect recent extreme events to climate change are a ploy to drum up support for the climate change movement. (Tom Williams, CQ Roll Call)
Florida, parts of Texas and the U.S. Virgin Island are facing months or years of recovery after hurricanes Irma and Harvey pummeled communities, turned streets into rivers and upended lives, but it does not appear that the catastrophic storms have changed the conversation about climate change in Washington.
GOP lawmakers skeptical of climate science didn’t announce new views or a sense of urgency in addressing the global warming that scientists say exacerbated the impact of the storms.
The Congressional Management Foundation is introducing a new awards ceremony to recognize nonlegislative achievements by members of Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
The Congressional Management Foundation has launched new awards for Congress, the Democracy Awards, to recognize nonlegislative achievements.
Five awards will be given out next summer. A Republican and a Democrat will be awarded in each of four categories: innovation, transparency and accountability, constituent service, and a “Life in Congress” award for workplace environment, the foundation announced. A fifth award will be given to one member and one congressional staffer for lifetime achievement.
Legislation to give former Sen. Bob Dole the Congressional Gold Medal is headed for the president’s desk. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Amid all the action in Congress this week, you might have missed a vote honoring former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole, R-Kan.
The House approved on Tuesday a bill, introduced by Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Kan., to present Dole with the Congressional Gold Medal. It had already passed in the Senate, where it was introduced by Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan. The measure now moves to President Donald Trump’s desk.
Reporters hold up their smart phones to try to catch a photo of Donald Trump Jr., as he returns to a meeting with the Senate Judiciary staff on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Donald Trump Jr. spent about five hours Thursday answering questions from Senate Judiciary Committee staff about a meeting he set up between his father’s presidential campaign and a Russian lawyer, but the details beyond his opening statement remain private for now.
Several senators attended the closed-door, voluntary interview with the president’s son, part of the committee’s probe into possible Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Only Senate staffers asked questions, however, and the committee will have to vote at a later time on whether to make the transcript public.
U.S. Virgin Islands Del. Stacey Plaskett spent Tuesday evening calling relatives back home as Hurricane Irma was bearing down on the territory. (Tom WIlliams/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Despite Hurricane Irma causing power outages, destruction, and potential loss of life back home in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Del. Stacey Plaskett was remarkably calm.
She had been up since 4 a.m. in constant contact with her close neighbor to the west, Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon.