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The Lazy Staffer’s Holiday Gift Guide

Do your holiday shopping on the Hill for under $60

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

Just in time for holiday shopping, the Senate gift shop has returned to its usual location by the Dirksen Senate Office Building subway stop.

For months, it was operating temporarily in the Russell Senate Office Building basement during renovations.

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Whether your loved one is a political junkie, a staunch Republican or Democrat or just thinks elephants and donkeys make for classy decor, there’s something for everyone. Here is Heard on the Hill’s under-$60 holiday shopping list:

Capitol ornament, $15

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

This year’s ornament features the Capitol dome set against a royal blue background. If you buy a dozen or more, the gift shop will engrave them.

Scarves, $22, and hand warmers, $15

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

Don’t want to stick out your neck? Try a sensible scarf. Choose between donkey blue or elephant red, and complete the set with matching cotton-blend hand warmers.

Capitol Police car and Russell trolley, $9

UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 9: Senate gift shop christmas gifts (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A section of the gift shop is devoted to toys, including a tiny Capitol Police car and a miniature version of the trolley that connects the Russell building to the Capitol. For older kids, a new jigsaw puzzle superimposes the preamble of the Constitution on an image of the American flag.

Capitol coasters, $10

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

New to the gift shop this year are Capitol coasters. Choose between red and green glass coasters, each stamped with an image of the Capitol and a gold Christmas tree. Nothing says “bipartisan” like a gift that will ward off wood-spoiling drink rings for generations to come.

Those famous socks, $7

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

Cold feet? A staple of the gift shop are partisan socks. Decorated with either a donkey or an elephant, these black, red and blue socks extend to the knee. 

Leather tag, $24

Also new to the gift shop is a black leather luggage tag embossed with the Senate seal. It’s the perfect gift for your traveling friends and family.

Season’s greetings cards, $9.50 to $12

Planning to send holiday cards? The gift shop has you covered with more than 15 different designs — from antique-style paintings of the Capitol to photographs of it in the snow.

Senate mugs, $15, and notebooks, $12.50

With every new Congress, the gift shop releases mugs and notebooks with all the senators’ names. They can serve as a memento of your time working in the Senate, but they also make good stocking stuffers.

Pillows, $55

Politico-up your interior decorating with some elephant or donkey throw pillows. You can’t help but notice the big, hand-hooked pillows when you walk into the gift shop — and they’ll have the same effect on your couch.

Fleece, $55

A new fleece arrived in the gift shop about six months ago. It’s a grey, gender-neutral fleece that says “U.S. Senate” on the front.


For babies, the gift shop has pink and blue hats ($10) that say “future senator.” For your furry friends, the gift shop has dog bowls ($20) that sport an uplifting message: “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.” 

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