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Dear new Congress: Bottle this feeling and carry it with you
We took the oath 38 years ago — but this isn’t a call to go back to the way things were

Newly elected lawmakers pose for their incoming freshman class photo on the East Front of the Capitol in November. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

OPINION — On Jan. 3, 1981, we raised our hands on the floor of the House of Representatives and solemnly swore to support the Constitution of the United States, and we are watching today with pride, hope and a tinge of jealousy as 100 of you take that oath.

Like it was yesterday, we recall the intoxicating mix of optimism and excitement as a new member walks the hallowed halls of Congress for the very first time. We hope you never let go of that feeling and the energy that propelled you to this moment.

Dem Leadership Accused of ‘Radical’ Move to Defang Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Committee
‘I don’t know that they think they need subpoena power,’ Hoyer said, to backlash

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has agreed to convene a select committee on a Green New Deal following protests outside of her office, but it's unclear whether it will have all of the authority typical of a select committee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A dispute between Democratic leadership and the insurgent left flank of the party has thrust an arcane question about congressional rules into controversy — do select committees have subpoena power? 

In recent weeks, Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has prioritized the establishment of a new select committee on a Green New Deal, or a plan to transform the economy away from fossil fuels. Like the original New Deal, such a push would require large scale investments in green infrastructure and jobs.

Judge Unexpectedly Delays Michael Flynn Sentencing
Judge signals he’s prepared to send former national security adviser to jail despite agreement with prosecutors

Michael Flynn, former national security adviser, leaves the E. Barrett Prettyman Courthouse after a federal judge delayed his sentencing Tuesday. Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Former Trump national security and campaign adviser Michael Flynn will not be sentenced for lying to the FBI until March.

A federal judge agreed to delay the sentencing of the former Trump official after signaling to Flynn and his attorneys that he was prepared to send Flynn to prison unless he learned more about his cooperation with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.

Word on the Hill: What’s Buzzing on Capitol Hill
Here’s what’s happening on Thursday, Dec. 6

The Capitol Christmas tree stands in front of the Capitol on Wednesday. The annual tree lighting was postponed from Tuesday until tonight because of the funeral of of President George H.W. Bush. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

We’re all over Capitol Hill and its surrounding haunts looking for good stories. Some of the best are ones we come across while reporting the big stories.

There is life beyond legislating, and this is the place for it. We look, but we don’t find everything. We want to know what you see too.

House Democrats Release 2019 Legislative Schedule
Calendar reflects accommodations for members with young families, Hoyer says

House Democrats released the legislative schedule for 2019 on Thursday. Above, Georgia Rep. John Lewis, left, and House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer leave the Capitol Visitor Center auditorium Wednesday during a break in the House Democrats’ leadership elections. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Democrats have released the chamber’s floor schedule for 2019, which includes 130 days in session over 33 weeks and was tailored to accommodate the influx of lawmakers with young families joining the House next year.

“As we welcome a large class of new members, many with young families, next year’s schedule is focused on balancing time in Washington with time for Members to conduct work in their districts and spend time with their families,” incoming House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland said in a statement accompanying the calendar’s release.

Capitol Ink | Make Way For Lame Ducklings

Chuck Grassley Opts for Finance Chairmanship
Move kicks off a round of musical chairs in the Senate, opening up a slot for a new Judiciary panel chairman

Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, right, will succeed Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, as gavel-holder on the Senate Finance panel. That means Judiciary will be looking for a new leader too. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Republican Sen. Charles E. Grassley announced he would take over the gavel of the tax-writing Finance Committee in the 116th Congress, a position he held in the early part of 2001 and again from 2003 through 2006.

Grassley’s move also opens up a slot for a new Judiciary panel chairman, likely South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham

Mitch McConnell Talks About Working With Nancy Pelosi
Two leaders have a long history dating to Appropriations Committee

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is talking about working with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., after Democrats flipped the House Tuesday night. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the most likely next speaker of the House are not strangers.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and McConnell have had to work together over the years, as long-tenured leaders of their respective conferences. And McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, noted their history goes back many years before that.

Trump Confirms Arrest in Package Bomb Case as Targets Mount
“We will prosecute … whoever it may be to the furthest extent of the law,” president says

A string of suspicious packages addressed to prominent Democrats set Congress on edge this week. Above, an officer in a bomb suit sifts responds to an unrelated threat near the Capitol in September. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 12:53 p.m. | Federal authorities have arrested a man in Florida in connection with a string of suspicious devices that were mailed to prominent Democrats and CNN.

Trump confirmed the arrest Friday, saying he was “committed to doing everything in my power as president to stop” politically motivated violent acts.  

For Trump, Pipe Bombs Sent to Opponents Is Ploy to Halt GOP ‘Momentum’ Before Midterms
President dismisses mailed munitions as “‘Bomb stuff”

With an umbrella handle in front of his face, President Donald Trump talks to reporters before leaving the White House on Oct. 15. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

For President Donald Trump, the pipe bombs sent to prominent Democrats this week appear to only be about spoiling a Republican Party on cruise control.  That was the president’s message on Friday, when he said media outlets are covering a string of mail bombs sent to leading Democrats and CNN to distract voters from an election cycle he believes favor Republicans.

“Republicans are doing so well in early voting, and at the polls, and now this ‘Bomb’ stuff happens and the momentum greatly slows - news not talking politics,” he said in a tweet.