Anger Management in the 2018 Midterms

Who will turn out to vote? Depends on who is angry

Midterms getting you down? Let Stu Rothenberg and Bridget Bowman provide some context. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Midterms getting you down? Let Stu Rothenberg and Bridget Bowman provide some context. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Jason Dick
Posted February 14, 2018 at 4:22pm

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To Vote With Anger

“Voters who are angry tend to vote in midterms,” Roll Call political analyst Stu Rothenberg says in the latest “Political Theater” podcast. “In bad times, everybody’s angry and everybody wants to send a message,” he continues.

But in times like this, when the economy’s pretty good and people are generally more positive? “It depends on who is angry,” he says.

We talk also about his recent column for Roll Call about the generic congressional ballot, providing some context for what we’re seeing in public polling. 

We also zero in on the upcoming primary elections in Arizona’s 8th Congressional District with Roll Call senior political writer Bridget Bowman, who explains the issues that are animating voters in the race to succeed former GOP Rep. Trent Franks

Listen to the full podcast:

When Trey Gowdy Comes A Callin’

UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 14: Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., leaves the Capitol following the final votes of the week on Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Have gavel, will travel. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

If you’re in the White House, these are not the words you want to hear coming from somebody with subpoena power: “Who knew what, when, and to what extent?” Rep. Trey Gowdy said Wednesday on CNN.

The South Carolina Republican, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, was referring to the ongoing saga about former White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter, who left the president’s employ amid allegations of domestic abuse of his two ex-wives.

It’s a story that seems to be sticking. And Gowdy, who is an experienced prosecutor and is leaving after this Congress, has a gavel and a committee mission to oversee what’s up. 

Pocahantas: Yep. She Went There

UNITED STATES - JANUARY 23: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is seen during a Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing in Dirksen Building on the nominations of Jelena McWilliams, Marvin Goodfriend, and Thomas Workman on January 23, 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Let’s talk about this Pocahantas thing. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren directly confronted Trump’s “Pocahantas” nickname for her Wednesday, telling the National Congress of American Indians about her family history and addressing the controversy over her claim to Indian heritage. 

“You won’t find my family members on any rolls, and I’m not enrolled in a tribe,” Warren said. “And I want to make something clear. I respect that distinction. I understand that tribal membership is determined by tribes — and only by tribes.”

The Massachusetts Democrat spoke about her family’s history in Oklahoma and what she wants to do in politics to benefit tribal communities across the country.

“My mother’s family was part Native American,” Warren said. “And my daddy’s parents were bitterly opposed to their relationship. So, in 1932, when Mother was 19 and Daddy had just turned 20, they eloped.”

Something tells us this won’t be the last time we hear about this.

Tin Cup

Rep. Sam Johnson, R-Texas, donated a tin cup and tube of toothpaste from his time as a prisoner of war in Vietnam. (Smithsonian's National Museum of American History).
(Courtesy of the Smithsonian National Museum of American History).

After Rep. Sam Johnson had spent seven years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, he took with him a little souvenir from his time at the notorious Hanoi Hilton, a tin cup (as well as a tube of toothpaste) he used to communicate with fellow prisoners.

Now the Texas Republican, who is retiring at the end of this Congress, is donating it to the Smithsonian, a keepsake that will be part of the nation’s history now.

The Kicker