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#tbt: That One Issue With The Telepods and Aliens

The front page of the insert in the January 24th, 2000 issue.
The front page of the insert in the January 24th, 2000 issue.

A: On Jan. 24, 2000, Roll Call published a special section titled “Congress Next.” The 38-page section welcomed members and staff back to the Hill and focused on changes to come.  

“Changes are Virtually Certain in Congress’ Future” we wrote in a story about the possibility of a virtual Congress. “At some point in the next century it’s conceivable that with super-encrypted computer connections and interactive TV, senators and members will debate with colleagues, attend hearings and pass bills without leaving their districts.” One senator is quoted saying a virtual Congress is “the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.”

The lead article was pretty confident that Congress would eventually look like the Galactic Senate.
The lead article predicted a Galactic Senate eventuality.

The edition also examined the nascent effect the Internet had on Congress at the time. Now an ingrained part of Hill life, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., was the first with a “Senate home page” in 1995. In 2000, there were still members who did not have their own websites.  

In 2000, the explosion of the internet was fundamentally changing Congress.
In 2000, the explosion of the Internet was fundamentally changing Congress.
Apparently nobody  knew about gyrocopters in 2000, either.
Apparently nobody knew about gyrocopters in 2000, either.












Roll Call also decided to have a little fun, drawing up a mock front page from the year 2050. The highlight is the tragic news story about a senator’s death-by-telepod, predicted to occur after the Virtual Congress Act of 2033.  

The mock front page also predicts Johnathan Firehat’s selection as House Druid, Jack McCain’s push to ban alien money and Bob Shuster’s memoir on 80 years of Shusters guiding transportation policy.  

The predictions for Roll Call's front page in 2050.
The predictions for Roll Call’s front page in 2050.

Roll Call is celebrating our 60th birthday all year long by posting #ThrowbackThursday trivia via the @rollcall Twitter feed. Each week we explore Roll Call’s history on the Hill with a peek at our archives.  

Last week’s #tbt can be found here . Want more? Follow along !  

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.

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