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Seersucker Day Returns, Who Wore It Best?

Seersucker was in the House! (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Seersucker was in the House! (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Thanks to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s primary loss, June 11, 2014 will go down as one of the most chaotic days in the modern history of the United States Capitol.  

But it will also go on the books as the moment Seersucker Day returned to Capitol Hill.  

The hallway leading to the GOP conference meeting where Cantor announced his resignation from leadership served as almost a Seersucker fashion runway as the ranks of the GOP members strutted, (or more often, trudged) their way to the meeting past reporters and cameras.  

As one of our faithful readers coined it , Capitol Hill got its “Matlock” on. “I was going to send you a photo because I saw two seersuckers converging at once, but my phone died,” Caitlin Huey-Burns, Capitol Hill reporter for Real Clear Politics, said outside the Cantor stakeout. “One of them was [Republican Rep.] Patrick McHenry.”

C-SPAN got in on the action, dutifully documenting seersucker appearances at hearings and the House floor. And the fad continued into the evening, when Roll Call Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni spotted Ohio Democratic Rep. Joyce Beatty in her seersucker at the downtown Shake Shack.

So, here’s CQ Roll Call’s “Who Wore It Best”: Seersucker Edition.  

Members Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La. 

Cassidy, third from left, spearheaded Seersucker Day. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Cassidy, third from left, spearheaded Seersucker Day. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

It wouldn’t really matter if Cassidy broke all of Trent Lott’s Seersucker Day Fashion Do’s and Don’ts . Cassidy was the force behind seersucker’s comeback . He won the day.  

Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Fla. 

Photo courtesy of the Office of Rep. Kathy Castor
Castor poses with Girl Scouts on Wednesday. (Courtesy of the Office of Rep. Kathy Castor)

“This is a Banana Republic, 2013,” Castor said of her suit at Wednesday evening votes. “Purchased in Tampa, Florida, known for its humidity and need-to-breathe clothing.”  

It could be argued that Castor filled Lott’s shoes on the Hill when it comes to seersucker advocacy.  

“I was walking with Frank Pallone out of a health subcommittee meeting and he said, ‘Oh, I used to have one.”  

“I said Frank! Get with it! Look around! Walk outside, with the climate changing, global warming, people need to make the investment NOW in the easily breathable fashion wear.”  

Castor weighed in on the Lott list.  

“He said, ‘a few times in the summer,'” Castor said. “What you do, you wear it more often than that. But you have a number of seersucker outfits. That was my only quibble.”  

The GOP Four: Reps. V icky Hartzler, R-Mo., Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., Martha Roby, R-Ala., Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla.

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Ala.

Photo courtesy of the Office of Terri Sewell
(Courtesy of the Office of Terri Sewell)

Reporters Lynn Sweet, The Chicago Sun-Times Washington Bureau Chief 

Abby Livingston photo
(Abby Livingston/CQ Roll Call)

Sweet created a stir mid-day when she joined colleagues at the stakeout in front of Speaker John A. Boehner’s office. Few reporters dressed up for the occasion, but there was Sweet, in a tan seersucker.  

She was, however, stunned to learn she was part of such an organized effort. NBC’s Chuck Todd immediately pointed out that it was not merely a Capitol Hill holiday, but a national celebration.  

Sweet then gamely participated in an impromptu photo shoot.  

“I’m never a part of a movement,” Sweet said later at the Cantor stakeout.  

Roll Call’s own Jason Dick

Abby Livingston photo
(Abby Livingston/CQ Roll Call)

Two words: “Arizona Chic.”  

Dick proved that one can combine a native flair, in his case, his Arizona roots (note the bolo tie), with the Southern staple.  

Not all Arizonans got in the act, though.  

“I’m from the West, not the South,” freshman Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., said, when asked at votes why she didn’t dress up.  

“But it has inspired me,” she added. “I am working with Matt Salmon, and we are going to host a Western-wear day, I’m thinking in maybe September, October; complete with cowboy boots and bolo ties.”  

Staffers Dan Jensen, the federal government We spotted Jensen when we were lost in the Capitol Basement. Immediately, he struck us one of the few men at the Capitol who did everything right.  

It was almost as if had read the Lott Do’s and Don’ts. The shirt, the yellow-ish tie, the white buck shoes.  


Abby Livingston photo
(Abby Livingston/CQ Roll Call)

Turns out, Jensen did. A Lott success story.  

Lindsay Bembenek and Kate LaBorde, The Office of Sen. David Vitter, R-La. 

Photo courtesy of Lindsay
(Courtesy of Lindsay Bembenek)

A rare moment of Senate-side participation. Note the white and beige shoes. Another all-around Lott success story.  

Eric Werwa, Helen Beaudreau, and Daniel Oliver, The Office of Rep. Michael M. Honda

Photo courtesy of the office of Rep. Mike Honda, D-Calif.

George Gerbo and John L. Dickhaus of the Committee on House Administration

Photo courtesy of John L. Dickhaus
(Courtesy of John L. Dickhaus)

Ken Callahan and Emily Miller of the Office of David Joyce, R-Ohio

Photo courtesy of Carla DiBlasio
(Courtesy of Carla DiBlasio)

Lobbyists Jim Rowland, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs at the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America

Photo courtesy of Catherine McDaniel
(Courtesy of Catherine McDaniel)

Rowland won extra points because, according to his colleague Catherine McDaniel, he dressed up a day early knowing that he would be out of town on the official Seersucker Day.  

Seersucker: The Next Generation 

Ezra Margolies, son of Roll Call Hill Navigator Columnist and Opinion Editor Rebecca Gale
Rebecca Gale photo
(Rebecca Gale/CQ Roll Call)
Margolies faithfully followed Lott’s advice about fearlessness when introducing seersucker beyond Capitol Hill. The little guy wore it to his day care, his mother reports.
It really didn’t matter who you wore or who you are, on Seersucker Day, it got no better than Ezra.

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