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Noem, Ryan Shack Up on Capitol Hill

Rep. Kristi Noem is part of new Speaker of the House Paul Ryan’s special eight-member advisory panel. She’s also bunking with him on Capitol Hill:

Noem sleeps on a pullout in her office. She described her morning routine this way:

“There’s a gym in the basement, so I get up in the morning and go down to the member’s gym and work out with a group of people,” she said. “And then I go to the women’s gym and shower and put my makeup on and stuff and come back up here and get dressed.”

…The most prominent member of this “Couch Caucus”? Newly minted House Speaker Paul Ryan, who’s been sleeping in his office for years.

The Wisconsin Republican told CNN’s Dana Bash in a recent interview that he would keep doing it even if he is, now, second in line to the presidency [Susan Davis, “Meet the Lawmakers Who Sleep, Shower, Work—All on Capitol Hill,” NPR, 2015.12.26].

Paul Ryan and Kristi Noem
You wouldn’t believe the time and money I save not shaving every morning! You should try it!

The Couch Caucus… ah, those predawn conversations as they pad down to the gym in their slippers ought to help South Dakota’s interests advance up the agenda.

Davis reports that the Capitol crashers find it hard to swing the $2,000-per-month rents in the Capitol neighborhood on their $174,000 salaries (new Speaker Ryan just bumped up to $223,500). Of course, as an eager reader points out, Noem’s and Ryan’s staffers all make less than that, and they don’t get to bring a cot and a duffel bag to Capitol Hill. Nor do they have the luxury of Uncle Sam paying for their flights home every weekend. They have to brave the D.C. housing market… where a casual search of finds 275 rental units within 15 bicycle minutes of the Capitol for $2,000 or less.

Members of Congress receive no housing allowance, so Noem and Ryan aren’t saving the taxpayers any money. They are actually taking advantage of 100% government subsidized housing, arguably in violation of House ethics rules and federal tax law:

Four years ago, the government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington asked the Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate whether members who sleep in their offices violate House rules and federal tax law.

The group noted House prohibitions against using “official resources” for anything other than official business, and against spending a member’s official allowance on personal expenses. And, since IRS rules say lodging is generally a taxable fringe benefit, CREW argued, members sleeping in Cannon, Longworth or Rayburn should pay taxes for imputed income based on the fair market value of a comparably sized Capitol Hill apartment.

Nothing ever came of the complaint. The independent ethics office either dismissed the allegations or forwarded a recommendation to the House Ethics Committee and that panel chose to drop the matter. (In either case, there wouldn’t have been any public announcement.) And House Ethics, which has “pink sheets” offering members guidance through a range of behavioral gray areas, has no document explaining the do’s and don’ts of combining a congressional office and a home away from home — suggesting the committee views the practice as unambiguously above-board [David Hawkings, “Members Living in Their Offices Rent-Free Adds Up,” Roll Call: Hawkings Here, 2015.05.21].

Davis says the House has scheduled 83 days of activity in 2016. Noem will fold up her cot and jet home every weekend to watch sporting events and beat back any Daschle-phobic perception that she’s gone Washington. Her staff will stay in Washington, paying rent and mortgages, and getting the real work of representing South Dakota done.


  1. Tasiyagnunpa 2015-12-27 08:30

    I know Noem isn’t our favorite, Cory, but I think we can do better than borrowing misogynistic headlines and languages to make points.

    But, you know, whatever will bring you readers.

  2. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 08:37

    Over 3 months of vacation,120 days off for weekends and more for federal holidays leaves approximately 145 days to fit in 83 days work schedule. Figures out to be $2096 and change per work day.

    And you say a wingnut ethics committee did nothing? I’m shocked! Shocked I tell you.

  3. Terence J. Miles 2015-12-27 08:39

    Bulls—, Tasiyagnunpa. After Noem’s sleazy campaign to oust Stephanie from her House seat, this is fair game. Let her have it, Cory.

  4. mhs 2015-12-27 08:44

    Cheap shot, cheap headline. This used to be a place for opposing views having conversations, now it’s an echo chamber for trolls like Kurtz and your increasingly partisan bitterness. Goodbye.

  5. larry kurtz 2015-12-27 08:47

    Noem: Morning Interests, Luxury Flights.

  6. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-27 09:00

    Tasi, I miss the misogyny in the term “shack up.” Please clarify.

  7. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-27 09:01

    MHS, the cheap ones here are Noem, Ryan, and their colleagues who turn a government building into free housing for themselves.

    And maybe I missed it, but if I’m bitter (and I dispute that term) and partisan (I’ll conditionally accept that term), I don’t think either condition has been increasing. I think you’re exaggerating your own complaint.

  8. Lynn 2015-12-27 09:20


    I completely agree.

  9. leslie 2015-12-27 09:24

    “Harry Truman’s description of the GOP as “guardians of privilege,”…. As for post 9/11 Democrats, their national committee used the crisis to call for widening the soft-money loophole in our election laws.

    America had just endured a sneak attack that killed thousands…about to go to war against terror….a moment for shared sacrifice, but…operating deep within the shadows of Washington’s Beltway, American business and political mercenaries wrapped themselves in red, white and blue and went about ripping off a country in crisis.

    H.L. Mencken got it right: “Whenever you hear a man speak of his love for his country, it is a sign that he expects to be paid for it.””

    ryan was a key participant in the 4 hour DC dinner 1.09.09 inaugaration night that the GOP hatched obstructionism. then he skipped the bill and slept in his warm office. homeless obstructionist with a beard.

    “[After] buying the political power to consummate their hold on the wealth created by the system they had rigged in their favor, they were taking the final and irrevocable step of separating themselves permanently from the common course of American life. They would occupy a gated stratosphere far above the madding crowd while their political hirelings below look after their earthly interests.”

    adelstein, daugaard, allender, noem, trump and ryan are all the same. republicans too. they wanna be rich at our expense. they don’t do the work. they have staff we pay that does their work. they game the system while ignoring the people under the bridge. let’s elect a real homeless person, who sleeps in an office and gets a staff to do the work.

    trump has received billions in name recognition advertising, at some one else’s expense. he wins regardless of his greedy callousness.

    a misogynistic headline from our bearded leader of the media? yeah. sex sells. did ja notice the dolls we gave our 3-4 year old daughters yesterday?

    these tax and favor discussions are very important.

  10. jerry 2015-12-27 09:25

    NOem, and the rest who bunker down in the building, do so with the full protection of round the clock surveillance and very armed special police force. Washington is a very dangerous place that legislators have even made more dangerous with their votes with the NRA for more access to weapons. NOem is not doing it to save the taxpayers any money, she is doing it because she may be worried that her address exposed would not be in her best interests. Me, I just wish that on the sleepovers, she would actually get something done for South Dakota. When you are on the clock 24 hours a day for the short time they actually work, something should be accomplished for the folks back home.

    I am not sure if there is a housing allowance for staff or not, but it seems offices are allotted about a million bucks a year. Staffers are also wined and dined by the thousands of lobbyists in Washington for access to their bosses. Staffers also learn the ropes for their future in Washington if they decide to stay in politics. You work hard for the boss but you also get the perks of the job as well. Sure the staffers have to live on the mean streets of Washington, but life is a gamble no matter what you do.

  11. leslie 2015-12-27 09:29

    quotes above and below from:

    “They would occupy a gated stratosphere far above the madding crowd while their political hirelings below look after their earthly interests.buying the political power to consummate their hold on the wealth created by the system they had rigged in their favor, they were taking the final and irrevocable step of separating themselves permanently from the common course of American life.”

  12. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 09:31

    My turn with a cheap shot. Cory, you PUT OUT a fantastic,accurate product every day should be ashamed of yourself for being a consummate journalist and far superior investigator/reporter than Powers,et al. Climb down off your high horse and take a well deserved bow so detractors can kiss your arse. I said it so you won’t have to.

  13. Dana P 2015-12-27 09:36

    Ok MHS and Lynn… don’t care for the headline. Got it. You feel that this blog “used to be” the place for opposing views. Got it.

    Dismiss the headline for a quick second. What is your opposing view on the issue of taxpayer funded housing, gyms, and showers being used by our elected politicians? Politicians who cry out against “entitlements”? Politicians who get tax payer funded health care, yet, until Obama/Dems tried to start working on healthcare in this country – couldn’t have cared less if any American was covered by insurance and a health care crisis could wipe out a family financially?

    I’m just curious what your opposing view is of our politicians tap dancing, always, (if not flat out violating) around ethical behavior when it comes to tax payer funded/provided “perks”?

  14. Loren 2015-12-27 09:36

    Maybe it would be a “cheap shot” IF Noem was a productive member of Congress. However, she hasn’t produced anything short of talking points for SD, freely accepts the 83 day work-YEAR, generous compensation, excellent bennies, and is so classy as to sleep on a cot in her office. I guess if she used the office for WORK, it might be a different story. Why not just turn that office into a bedroom suite? She sure doesn’t use it to crank out legislation!

  15. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 09:37

    You wingnuts wear it well.
    Wingnuts and victimhood-the easy sell.
    Don’t get your way-scream and yell.

  16. leslie 2015-12-27 09:38

    thank u mfi, as always. consistency is a virtue

  17. leslie 2015-12-27 09:46

    “The plutocrats and oligarchs are winning. The vast inequality they are creating is a death sentence for government by consent of the people at large. Did any voter in any district or state in the last Congressional election vote to give that billion dollar loophole to a handful of billionaires? To allow corporations to hide their political contributions? To add $1.4 trillion to the national debt? Of course not. It is now the game: Candidates ask citizens for their votes, then go to Washington to do the bidding of their donors. And since one expectation is that they will cut the taxes of those donors, we now have a permanent class that is afforded representation without taxation.

    A plutocracy, says my old friend, the historian Bernard Weisberger, “has a natural instinct to perpetuate and enlarge its own powers and by doing so slams the door of opportunity to challengers and reduces elections to theatrical duels between politicians who are marionettes worked by invisible strings.” id. at huffpo.

  18. leslie 2015-12-27 09:58

    oh, and happy new year lynn and mhs:)!!

    “As we are reminded by this season, there is more to life than politics. There are families, friends, music, worship, sports [trace o’connel and hockey for the allen 57], the arts, reading, conversation, laughter [under the bridge, homeless, -3 last night], celebrations of love and fellowship and partridges in pear trees. But without healthy democratic politics serving a moral order, all these are imperiled by the ferocious appetites of private power and greed.

    So enjoy the holidays, including Star Wars. Then come back after New Year’s and find a place for yourself, at whatever level, wherever you are, in the struggle for democracy. id.

    ***This is the fight of our lives and how it ends is up to us.***

    i work for free for the pennington democrats. how about you?

  19. 96Tears 2015-12-27 10:26

    Pew! Phony! This couch caucus malarkey smells more like a convenient alibi to than an actual event. Prove that I wasn’t sleeping in the cot at the office! Who’s going to search web cam files to double check the arrivals and departures of Washington’s elite?

    As to Noem, she’s far, far, far too high maintenance for this to be believable to anybody who’s observed her around Hayti, Watertown and Pierre. If she found closet space in the House office building, I’ll bet a million bucks it wasn’t a walk-in with private bath and Sleep Number cot. I noticed she referred to herself to the reporter as a farmer and a rancher. In Hamlin County, we call them farmers. You’ve got to be really pretentious to call yourself a rancher in that locale.

  20. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 10:45

    Since christmas is a supposed time of sharing and caring,mayhaps she shares cot time with another person to save even more money and create more heat.

    I’d imagine she would prefer to shower with the guys so no naked woman could catch her eye and lead her astray-knowing how wingnuts view gays and lesbians. And I say to myself,what a wonderful world.

  21. Jenny 2015-12-27 10:46

    Boy, these Congress people are a bunch of cheapskates. Having a nice salary of $174000 plus all the perks and finding it hard to put up $2000 for your own DC digs? Govt subsidized flights home on weekends, paid for dinners with lobbyists, govt subsidized trips around the world, best GOVT health insurance around. What has princess Noem turned into – a cheapskate? What do they want, the GOVT to pay for the DC apartment also?
    That kind of salary would be a dream for most South Dakotans. They have no idea how most Americans really live and survive on non-living wages.

    Cory, drop the ‘shacking up’ part and you will be taken more seriously. That just implies that there’s an affair going on, which is not what you intended your readers to focus on (at least I don’t think you did).

  22. Jenny 2015-12-27 10:55

    I just have to put in that my new home state of MN really has had the most decent politicians representing it. The good governor Dayton gave away his salary to the poor when representing us as Senator. This is what really all wealthy politicians should do. Most of them are wealthy anyway and get more wealthy as everything is given to them when in Washington.

  23. Straight outta ridge 2015-12-27 11:06

    Paul Ryan you lucky son of a gun!!

  24. jerry 2015-12-27 11:13

    Seats of power have always gotten the better of themselves in America. From its beginnings before the time of the Bible, Americans operated in a way of central power.

    NOem and the rest who reside day and night in the protective dome, do so out of fear.

  25. Greg 2015-12-27 11:28

    Mike from Iowa, Christmas in South Dakota is about family and friends. Your comments about Noem make YOU look Stupid. Happy Holiday’s In Iowa.

  26. grudznick 2015-12-27 12:27

    What a bunch of whiners. Why was there not this outcry years ago when this practice first came to light when dozens of representatives were sleeping in their offices? The misogyny of you whiners wringing your hands as you imagine young Ms. Noem in her short bathrobe carrying a hand-towel down to the showers to dry herself off with amazes me. Nonetheless, the bitterness and partisanship displayed in this post amuses me so I thank you for that.

  27. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 12:45

    Greg-I didn’t vote for Noem or Steve King or any other wingnut you might care to name. iowa isn’t run by a super majority of fauxknee kristians who claim to be followers of J H Christ,but are actually owned by C & D koch bros. South Dakota’s pols are all about the koch family. That and hating on women of reproductive age.

  28. jerry 2015-12-27 12:46

    There are mostly men who sleep in their offices, in fact, NOem seems like the only female in this crowd. Not so many years back, Pete Domenici from New Mexico would wander the halls in his bathrobe. Of course, he had a serious mental issue that made him behave the way he did, but that is what happens in a frat house. Interesting choice for NOem to stay there.

  29. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 12:53

    Yo Grudz-how do you,of all people,know Noem wears a short bathrobe? You need to spend time in a dictionary and learn some new words. There is no outcry about tax cheats of the wingnut persuasion. Just a simple little reminder that what wingnuts are doing might be illegal. No one cried impeach the bastards as your side is wont to do whenever the B lack guy’s name comes up. Your mention of a short bathrobe is closer to being sexist than anything Cory or anyone else has said.

  30. Jenny 2015-12-27 13:04

    Old boys can still have sexual fantasies about pretty women, Mike, it’s just normal.

  31. SuperSweet 2015-12-27 14:05

    According to the Urban Dictionary one definition of “shack up” is “To hunker down; to base yourself out of a location; a place of respite.” I think this is the context of Cory’s headline as I know Cory to be an upright journalist that avoids double meanings.

  32. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-27 14:14

    If I were South Dakota’s Congressman, I could imagine keeping a cot and a fridge in my office in case of an overnight session or a snowstorm. But I can imagine my productivity declining if I tried to make my Congressional office my permanent dorm room. It’s not healthy to spend every waking and sleeping hour in the same building. I’d want to live in a real neighborhood, bike to work and back past the White House and the other amazing monuments, go to the grocery store and talk to regular folks, come home and make spaghetti, and sit on a back porch or balcony in the evening away from the office, someplace where I could be alone and collect my thoughts.

    I’d also want a place where my spouse and kids could stay when they would come visit Washington—and for Pete’s sake, who wouldn’t want the family to come visit the nation’s capital?

  33. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 14:40

    96-maybe Noem meant she was a Framer,as in “of the constitution.” Rancher could just as easily been rancor and be at least as appropriate,imho.

  34. grudznick 2015-12-27 14:42

    Indeed, Mike from Iowa, your response is pretty much exactly what the short bathrobe comment was intended to elicit. But then again, maybe I do know how long Ms. Noem’s bathrobe is.

    Mr. H, when you are Congressman and biking I bet you will be the only one biking and I, for one, will applaud you for it if I am able.

  35. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-27 14:52

    Don’t fool yourselves, Noem isn’t sleeping on a traditional Army cot as we know them, she probably had the government buy her a fancy comfortable hide-a-bed.

  36. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-27 14:54

    grudz’s seems to have developed a very a sensual image of Noem in her nighties.

  37. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 15:12

    Well Grudz,why not come out of the closet and tell the world you are a dirty old man?

  38. grudznick 2015-12-27 15:16

    It’s a well developed image, Mr. C.

  39. grudznick 2015-12-27 15:38

    I blame Mr. H for this sordid blogging, what with his slipper fetish, descriptive writing, provocative headline and all.

  40. Loren 2015-12-27 16:01

    I truly believe it was folks like grudz, fantasizing about Ms Noem in her tight jeans (or short robe), that gave her the west river vote. It certainly wasn’t her legislative prowess!

  41. grudznick 2015-12-27 16:10

    I didn’t vote for her, Ms. Loren. Just sayin…

  42. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 16:16

    Virtually worthless congresswoman by day,smoking-hot Grudz fantasy chick in a short robe by night. Grudz is chock full if pin-up libido when he dreams of wingnut women.

  43. grudznick 2015-12-27 16:18

    I love how this blogging thread has become about me. Laud me!

  44. jerry 2015-12-27 16:31

    Dave, using that as a chair all day long could give it that arse smell when you tuck in at night. My guess is that there should be lots and lots of febreze handy to clear that musky smell. NOem’s office must smell like stink feet.

  45. Roger Elgersma 2015-12-27 16:33

    I sleep on a couch all by myself as well, real cheap actually. But if I was at work only 83 days a year, that would be more of a problem than sleeping by myself. Before they went to parties all weekend and made decisions under the influence of alcohol, not good either.

  46. Winston 2015-12-27 16:34

    Perhaps the reason Noem has missed so many committee meetings over the years is because too often, in the middle of the night, the murphy bed in her office has folded on her….

  47. Wayne Pauli 2015-12-27 17:00

    I don’t care where people sleep. I am glad that mhs and Lynn are gone. They must have thought Cory would beg them back…good luck. As my Dad used to say, “don’t let the door hit you in the ass on your way out.”

  48. Spike 2015-12-27 17:01

    Seriously people? Fantasy about Ms. Noem.? NOT….That morning make up operation has to take a loooong time. Maybe that’s the real reason she stays in her office.


    I’m with Cory, respect the elected position. No show Noem.

  49. grudznick 2015-12-27 17:01

    I have a bed that sits up and lays back at the push of a button. It is really swell.

  50. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-27 17:09

    Time to slap grudz’s back to reality by letting him know that a Hooter’s is coming to Rapid City real soon.

  51. grudznick 2015-12-27 17:13

    I am told they have a fun, yet still suggestive atmosphere, and serve large portions. I will welcome Hooters and hope they locate in the Creamery Building.

  52. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 17:25

    Not too shabby,Spike and that buckskin of hers is almost pretty enough to kiss.

  53. mike from iowa 2015-12-27 17:27

    To tie that buckskin in to this thread-I’m guessing that horse works more than 83 days per year and gets paid a whole lot less than $174000,too.

  54. grudznick 2015-12-27 17:42

    Ms. Lynn is gone? If so that’s a darned shame. She was the most sensible one among you. She will be missed, but move on we must.

  55. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-27 18:18

    Winston, there is a sitcom to be made around just that scene of a malfunctioning Murphy bed. Maybe it’s a whole Murphy desk.

    I will carry my bike to my Congressional office, (1) to encourage staff, colleagues, and visitors to seek greener transportation, (2) to symbolize my believe in real People Power, and (3) to keep it from getting stolen. I’ll have a nice flat near the Capitol where I can host gatherings for constituents.

  56. Rorschach 2015-12-27 18:21

    If Cory were a congress person he would rent himself an apartment and bike to work.

    If I were a congress person I would do exactly what Rep. Noem and Rep. Ryan are doing. The price of a sleeper sofa, microwave and mini fridge is way less than the $24,000/year cost to rent a place that would be slept in for 83 days +/- per year. Anyone who won’t acknowledge the lure of saving real money like this is either a spendthrift or arithmetically challenged.

  57. grudznick 2015-12-27 18:35

    Mr. H, when you are a Congressman there will be no theft in Washington DC, for the people will have seen the way. And you will have grown to be the sort of fellow who doesn’t pile on folks for sleeping on the couch and will have focused your mind around practical issues, such as how to have a flat near the Capitol that will hold dozens of people.

  58. Jenny 2015-12-27 18:39

    Time to watch my boys, go Vikes! Cheeseheads lost today, let’s go for the title next week! Bye SD politics for tonight.

  59. bearcreekbat 2015-12-27 18:46

    Tonights the night Jenny – go Vikes!

  60. leslie 2015-12-27 19:38

    since smelly couches are the topic, grudz, and all about u, I am glad to know u voted for Stephanie.

  61. Lynn 2015-12-27 19:49

    Have any of you ever spent much time in DC? It is a very expensive city to live in. Yeah I’m sure you could find places that seem reasonable but your risk of having other issues where you reside increases also. There are a number of members of Congress that live in their offices to save money. Yeah it may seem like a good paying job with excellent benefits but really it is a temp job. How many people in South Dakota make that kind of income with benefits? Not many. If anyone wants to be frugal and save while they can than who can blame them? I can’t.

    Made the mistake of going to DC in the late 90s to stay with an old friend in June and it is one of the worst months to go there with it being extremely humid and hot. Summer is a bad time to spend time in DC. She had roommates she was close friends with to save money which is common in DC in a nice neighborhood townhouse and when we came back from exploring DC it had been burglarized. Again this was a nice neighborhood, security system and everything was secure. They were not too surprised and said it happens.

    This post is like a sensational tabloid post to get web traffic making something out of nothing. Must be a really slow day to find anything with substance.

  62. Lynn 2015-12-27 19:52


    I’m not looking for someone to beg me back. Could care less. My point in agreeing with MHS was that the post was in poor taste and agree that it is an echo chamber with a few of the same trolls on morning, day and night.

  63. leslie 2015-12-27 20:09

    rohr someone already pointed out she wouldn’t have paid for her own bed, micro and fridge. gimme a break.

    fashion is EXPENSIVE. AARON SCHOCK taught her that

  64. grudznick 2015-12-27 20:17

    I, for one, am glad that you were agreeing with Mr. MHS, Ms. Lynn.

  65. leslie 2015-12-27 20:22

    the cherry blossoms are nice in the spring. fall is spectacular, shirtsleeves weather for walking, walking the all. winter is ugly, flying is frightening. DC trips are worthwhile especially when work, summer was hot. humid. really? like flying in soup as I recall.

    I never thought u left lynn. I thought maybe when les spurned you, he showed himself a bit of a jerk. but these are the kind of conversations grudz goes on about ad infinitum, to the detriment of us all as u point out.

  66. leslie 2015-12-27 20:24

    oh, lynn we are trying to defeat ms. noem in the upcoming election, here.

  67. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-27 20:39

    If people are outraged, disgusted or whatever with Cory’s blog topic why do they bother coming here and reading them or bothering to comment?
    That is a serious question.

  68. grudznick 2015-12-27 20:53

    Not outraged or disgusted, Mr. C.

    Amused and entertained. That’s what Mr. H’s blog is all about, sir!

  69. grudznick 2015-12-27 20:55

    I actually do want to compliment Mr. H for his PPesque headline. When it’s all about entertainment, you are starting to catch up to PP.

  70. Winston 2015-12-27 21:27

    Cory, great idea!…..The real convenience of this murphy desk would be that the work just magically disappears.

  71. larry kurtz 2015-12-27 21:41

    kristi is a chameleon. she survives by the very camouflage she paints on every morning and she knows her lines.

    kristi noem works for twenty south dakota gopers, people.

    the rest of you are just miserable bastards.

  72. David Newquist 2015-12-27 22:02

    What this string reveals is the problem of the literate living in a resurgence of the illiterate. Cory writes a headline with double entendre, but some folks get impaled by just one of it horns.
    shack up
    1. (usually followed by: with) To live or take up residence, esp with a mistress or lover.
    2. To hunker down; to base yourself out of a location; a place of respite.

    There is also the irony of referring to the buildings on Capitol Hill with the term shack, and one wonders if those residents also heat canned soup for supper on hot plates. The Congressional restaurants are open for breakfast and, especially, lunch, but generally not the dinner hour. If the residents don’t want to pay the going rate for housing, I am sure they would balk at the tourist rates for food in the restaurants around the Capitol.

    I notice that some also raise the condemnatory epithet of misogyny in peculiar applications. But I suppose political opponents of the House Office occupants blame the system for giving aid and comfort to the enemy. The Internet is a dangerous vector.

  73. grudznick 2015-12-27 22:03

    Mr. H’s blogging says “a pullout.” I believe that means more of a hide-a-bed than a murphy-bed. Murphy beds fold up against the wall and are obvious even when folded up. Although I have seen some that double as a desk or book case. But a murphy bed just doesn’t make much sense, when you really think about it. Some of you have thought about it much. What do you think?

  74. grudznick 2015-12-27 22:07

    Mr. Newquist, I am sure it enrages you as surely as it amuses me when grudznick becomes the voice of reason around these parts.

  75. Winston 2015-12-27 22:13

    The more I think about it, though, would you rather have your congressperson sleeping in their DC office or on C Street? ;-)

  76. Porter Lansing 2015-12-27 22:19

    Good one, Winston.

  77. larry kurtz 2015-12-27 22:27

    thank you for clicking cory’s tip jar, people. merry six days since solstice.

  78. Bree S. 2015-12-27 23:26

    It’s funny.. the same Democrats that say a conservative Republican is too conservative to run for office in conservative Republican South Dakota will run a flaming Socialist for office here, and when that fails, they try it again. It’s about as strategic as trying to bust through a brick wall with your brain pan.

  79. Porter Lansing 2015-12-28 05:03

    83 days work in a whole darn year? C’mon, Republicans. Even Pat Powers works more than that. What an insult to America!!

  80. Don Scott 2015-12-28 06:15

    I don’t support Noem, but I find your headline offensive. We can do better than to stoop to that sort of erroneous sensationalism to try to attract readership.

  81. Lynn 2015-12-28 06:49

    Tip jar?

    I suppose in my opinion if your for legalizing marijuana and other anti-social hallucinogens such as magic mushrooms and others than can lead to chemical dependency and a number of harmful outcomes.

    Attacking and not being respectful of other peoples religious beliefs.

    Attacking our elected officials based on physical appearances such as if they are overweight or trying to save money by residing in one of the most expensive cities to live in the US with a high crime rather than what they support policy wise or how they voted.

    Blowing many issues and stances by our elected officials way out of proportion making it more difficult to find common ground.

    Going extreme hard left regarding public policy.

    It may get eyeballs reading this blog for a shock or entertainment value similar to a tabloid for a while similar to Larry from New Mexico’s obscene and unsubstantiated bloggings and comments but highly doubt it will translate into votes cast at election time to support it by most other South Dakotans and myself.

  82. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 08:49

    Lynn is wrong. Ringing the tip jar of this blog does not promote the legalization of marijuana. Lynn is pushing an agenda entirely of her imagination, not grounded in the facts of the positions I have stated on this blog.

    Furthermore, I am left, but ask anyone in San Francisco or Paris and they’ll tell you I don’t clear the bar for “extreme hard” left, which is Lynn’s own sensationalist exaggeration meant to amp up her own comment readership.

  83. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 08:51

    Don is also wrong in branding this post “erroneous”. Not one word that I have written, including the headline, is false. Rep. Noem and Speaker Ryan are literally living under the same roof. They meet the literal definition of “shacking up” that SuperSweet provides.

    You can call me many things, Don, but don’t call me erroneous when I have made no factual error.

  84. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 08:53

    Porter is right: 83 work days out of a full year is crazy. If we figure that a standard work year would be 250 days (5 days a week, 50 weeks), Noem’s annualized salary is really more like $524,000. Princess Kristi takes free housing for the government while her lower-paid staff manage to pay their own rent.

  85. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 08:55

    Bree, there is a difference between principled conservatism, which usually involves paying one’s own way, and being a cheapskate who mooches off the government.

    But Bree, help me out: what flaming socialists have we run for office here in South Dakota? And what government office buildings are they sleeping in?

  86. Gracie 2015-12-28 09:10

    The other questions are Why? and What?
    What is So important and pressing to require Anyone to sleep on site.
    Why aren’t they better managers of time and resources…private business would not allow this.
    What happened to the proclamation that my family is important..yet is ok to leave them for 3 months.

  87. leslie 2015-12-28 09:34

    speaker ryan is a metrosexual mesmerized by his own looks who has family time conditions necessary because he flys home 3 days a week, works out 60-90 minutes per day/6 days a week, and finds shaving and a 2nd home in DC too time consuming, but did not take his wife to the inaugural as chief proponent of the 1.09.09 gop obstructionism dinner. his priorities are out of whack like arron schock’s and kristie noems. simple really. like puffing orange Boehner.

  88. Porter Lansing 2015-12-28 09:55

    Lynn from Plankinton,
    Your continual references to drugs that may become a problem in SoDak fail to mention the current crisis. More than half the women in your state have abused pain pills and yet you ignore it. A little too close to home, ma’am?

  89. Craig 2015-12-28 10:03

    Cory is an intelligent man and good writer, so I presume he knew full well that when he wrote “shacking up” it could be interpreted a couple of different ways. That is a bit clickbaitish, and frankly below the level of journalism he most often produces. I’m sure Cory knew that the comments would quickly lead to speculation about her sharing a bed with Ryan or some other member of Congress (and yes the comments did suggest such a thing), and therefore it was in poor taste. He is capable of much better.

    That being said, I honestly don’t have a problem with Noem sleeping in her office. The truth is although Congress may be in session for only 80 some odd days a year, let’s not pretend they aren’t working evenings and weekends even during their trips home. Thus if she is sleeping in her office, in theory we are probably gettign a few hours more work from her in a day – and regardless of how you feel about Noem politically getting more for our tax dollar should be a good thing (unless those hours are spent working on ways to punish the middle class which is a possibility).

    Also, although members of Congress may not get housing stipends, they probably do receive transportation expenses to and from their office, so perhaps Noem staying in her office does actually result in a small cost savings.

    Frankly I can’t really blame her. Daschle had a residence in D.C. and it was used against him during his race against Thune. The issue of residency once again came to light during Herseth-Sandlin’s race against Noem. Thus if I was in Congress and given the choice between spending $24,000 a year on rent plus $3,000 a year on utilities for an apartment I likely would only use less than 100 days a year I assure you sleeping in my office would most certainly be considered.

    Besides, what better way to prove you are living a conservative lifestyle than to show you don’t pay for rent and instead sleep on a pull-out bed? Like it or not, the average Noem supporter will see this as a good thing as opposed to being something to chastise her for. I may not be a fan of Congresswoman Noem, but I’m not going to pretend this is an issue that actually matters, nor would I assume it is one which only impacts Republicans.

  90. Jenny 2015-12-28 10:08

    Lynn, I admit maybe I was a bit harsh on Noem, but it IS a double standard. It’s okay for Congress people to sleep at their offices. but private businesses don’t allow office sleeping to get out of paying expensive rent. Remember the GOP are the ones that are in love with the Free (rigged)Market so why don’t they do something about high DC rents? Rent are way over-inflated most everywhere in the country when wages haven’t kept up. So it’s a huge problem but it’s like Congress is bragging about not having to pay over-priced rents like the rest of America has to.

  91. moses 2015-12-28 10:30

    They own how much and can’t afford an apt get Real Kristi or give up congress.

  92. Bree S. 2015-12-28 10:34

    Cory: What resource disappears when Representatives sleep in their offices? How is the taxpayer harmed?

    Overall, I agree with Craig.

  93. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 10:42

    Craig, I find it hard to believe we’re getting any more work out of the Congresswoman from her shacking up in the Capitol than we would out of any conscientious Congressperson who can take work home on a laptop. And I think we can make a valid productivity argument that we get better work out of someone who comes to the office, puts in a solid eight-hour day, then heads home for rest and recovery, than we do out of someone who keeps a cot in the office and never steps out.

    Savings on transportation benefits to and from work? Nope. Check this Congressional report on pay and benefits:

    Members get a $3,000 tax deduction for living expenses. The Members’ Representational Allowance covers travel to and from the District, not within the District to and from the Capitol. Living and commuting expenses are not reimbursable. I see no tax savings from Noem’s mooching housing at the Capitol.

  94. leslie 2015-12-28 10:46

    a person living in their car to save 24,000 in rent and 3000 in utilities will be arrested.

  95. Lynn 2015-12-28 10:46


    There have been Dems that have done this too. DC is a very expensive metro to live in. For some of these Reps and Senators it will be the best paying job with benefits they will ever have. Sen Klobuchar drove an old Saturn to DC. When I was there I happened to see Sen. Patrick Leahey get out of an older Ford Explorer walking past us on our way to go out for a casual lunch and it was no big deal.

    Looking up above I mentioned a townhouse I stayed at was burglarized while we were out for the after afternoon? Again it was in a nice neighborhood and there were 3 other roommates that had decent paying jobs being professionals but it made perfect sense to share housing because it was so expensive.

    Rents being so high? Maybe it is the corporate power brokers, attorneys and lobbyists that contribute to driving up rents there. Again crime rates have been historically high in DC too. One needs to pay for a place to be safe and secure.

    Lastly Rep Noem like many reps regardless of party or gender in Congress has a family with kids still in school back in SD plus the demands of keeping in contact with her constituents. How much actual time is in DC vs back home in SD?

    Again this post is just click bait and it’s in poor taste.

  96. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 10:52

    Bree, not much in the way of resources disappears when Noem sleeps in the office. The point is that, unlike her staff, she’s mooching off the government for a freebie, which runs counter to all the things she’ll tell us about individualism and conservatism when she comes home. She’s not saving us money; she’s putting more tax dollars in her pocket.

    But if you’d like to itemize resources she’s consuming at our expense…

    (1) Capitol lodgers raise the electricity bill (microwaves? fridges? TVs and computers on late into the night and early in the morning? Hair dryers?).

    (2) Capitol lodgers increase water usage (all those showers!).

    (3) Capitol lodgers reduce the stimulatory effect of their dollars entering the housing market in Washington DC, thus depressing the district economy.

    (4) Capitol lodgers are likely flying home every weekend, increasing the travel costs that we taxpayers cover. Sure, flying home every weekend staves off the Daschle curse among the home folks when they go to vote, but has it gotten us better representation or more effective government since 2004? Declining approval ratings for Congress appear to say no.

  97. Lynn 2015-12-28 10:56


    Would it be too far of a stretch to imagine Stace Nelson living in his office to save money had he been elected to the US Senate in 2014? I’d have no problem with it and knowing DC it would of made sense.

  98. Rorschach 2015-12-28 10:57

    Cory, You say “Rep. Noem and Speaker Ryan are literally living under the same roof. They meet the literal definition of “shacking up” that SuperSweet provides.”

    Do your homework, Cory. There are more than one US House office building. Rep. Ryan’s office is in the Longworth Building. Rep. Noem’s office is in the Rayburn Building. So they are not under the same roof. You should concede that they are not “shacking up,” and you should concede that your headline is PP-style scandalous and unjustifiably so. This is an odd position for me defending Rep. Noem.

  99. Porter Lansing 2015-12-28 11:02

    Lynn from Plankinton,
    It would be easy to picture you saying something to a neighbor or stranger that resulted in them calling a friend who burglarized your friends place. You just have a way with words that makes people want to retaliate.
    If the Rep. is sleeping in her office that means she has to tell her staff to go home and they’re not doing any work, where their office is essential. Many staffers work 18 hours a day, if presented the opportunity. It’s been proven that 75% of the work a congressperson does is fund raising for re-election not helping their constituents.

  100. leslie 2015-12-28 11:03

    who wipes down the office Lysol, empties her tissues, washes her water glass, (and on and on?) after Christie wakes up and goes down to starbux, before the 1st constituent arrives in the PUBLIC OFFICE. she has a paid person acting as her maid that is built into the overhead of the Dirksen bldg. or where ever she sleeps. more republican hidden costs and hypocrisy and craig and bree know it and insult 99% of us as we go about our daily, less “elected” daily lives. trailer trash are what ryan and noem are demonstrating, basically (and no insult intended toward people who actually live in trailers.) get elected, buy a car, park it, rent a cheap motel room, and suffer through your job. or a home, like Daschle, who blew it hiring a maid. if they can’t handle daily living, how should we react?

    do you think trump sleeps in his office? do you think he’d have any respect for his congress or senate person if they did, and he knew it and was trying to conduct business with them?

    let homeless people sleep in federal buildings after hours.

  101. Lynn 2015-12-28 11:05

    [CAH: Ah, dear readers, Lynn interrupts the conversation with her selfish agenda again. How very tiring. She has sunk entirely into the personal attack mode, thinking that by painting Larry as my sidekick she is somehow damaging both of us. Sigh.]

    This post is very similar to the style of Cory’s sidekick Larry from New Mexico. They are a tag team that are interchangeable.

    Good observation Rorschach!

    “Do your homework, Cory. There are more than one US House office building. Rep. Ryan’s office is in the Longworth Building. Rep. Noem’s office is in the Rayburn Building. So they are not under the same roof. You should concede that they are not “shacking up,” and you should concede that your headline is PP-style scandalous and unjustifiably so. This is an odd position for me defending Rep. Noem.”

  102. leslie 2015-12-28 11:07

    click bait. funny. that what u said about EB5 before the election. and MCEC. shall I go on?

  103. Rorschach 2015-12-28 11:14

    Do your homework leslie. The Dirksen building is a senate office building.

  104. leslie 2015-12-28 11:18

    omg. time for therapy. kristie is on the speaker’s ADVISORY BOARD. and they both throw mattresses on the floor of their likely brand new super expensive office carpet every night. these guys are just kids!

    rats and cockroaches abound in DC public buildings at night, and likely mold in ventilation ducts. these two are certifiable cheapskates.

    I assume these are some of the revelations NPR thought the voting public might like to know about these elected “officials”.

    certainly casts them in a bad light, shows their lack of character, and pisses off their constituents as we see here.

  105. Rorschach 2015-12-28 11:21

    With the money they are saving on lodging and related expenses, these legislators can buy 2-3 guns per month, or one nice shotgun. That’s every month folks. Small inconvenience to build a very nice gun collection in a 2-year term. And you can work out every day at the House gym to stay fit for the re-election grind. Would I do the same thing? Yes I would. And I’d have one he!! of a gun collection to show for it.

  106. leslie 2015-12-28 11:25

    oh big wuff rohr. I forgot more DC office building names of republicans than I can count. I am not a constituent of these republicans so why would I want to waste the time to google their mailing/physical addresses.

    now I suppose u want my real name. give up. cory kicks your ass every day, SD is changing, and you will probably tell me now u might be a dem. geez. this is fun.

    kristie is an idiot, and ryan is as dangerous as he is good looking. who cleans up that stuff he puts in his hair after he leaves the bath room {not his bathroom). :) you guys are fools to defend this.

    how many speeding tickets did this genius have before you elected her? now she’s sleeping on the floor.

  107. Jenny 2015-12-28 11:28

    Okay, then let’s let low wage SD teachers sleep in their classrooms. They surely deserve it, since probably 50% of their measley pay goes to rent and utilities. That would not go over well at all.

  108. mike from iowa 2015-12-28 11:50

    The grifter queen,sow grizzly,half term guv of Alaska chose to drive home everynight and charge the state a per diem for staying at home. One of her many ethics violations she claims she did not commit. Alaska forced her to return the pesos.

  109. Bree S. 2015-12-28 16:11

    Cory: Lynn brings up a good point about security. A Representative’s office is certain to be better guarded than a private residence near the Capitol. This means that work done after hours on the office building’s network has a slim chance of interception compared to a private network outside normal government channels. Considering the problems we’ve had as a nation with the Chinese, Russians, etc. acquiring classified correspondence from top level government employees, the value of after hours access to a secure government network can’t be undervalued. This means Noem & Ryan are getting more work done for fellow Americans in a more secure environment by sacrificing the privacy of townhouse for the security of a small bunk in the office. So the real question is why aren’t other important government officials like Minority Leader Pelosi making a similar sacrifice for the security of the nation?

    Lynn: I’m sure Stace would’ve made a fine Senator if given the chance; but that is water under the bridge.

  110. larry kurtz 2015-12-28 16:27

    Because government-subsidized dorm rooms are always more secure than private apartments: right, Bree?

  111. Bree S. 2015-12-28 17:02

    You agree that official government channels are more secure than private networks, right Larry?

  112. larry kurtz 2015-12-28 17:03

    Secure from whom, Bree?

  113. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-28 17:20

    As Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan has a full time security team similar to the Vice President.
    If Kristi needs to feel secure, perhaps she can hangout with Paul Ryan and use security detail.

  114. mike from iowa 2015-12-28 17:34

    Congressweasels don’t spend enough time doing their jobs to warrant security. They are less than part time paycheck collectors and should be paid accordingly and not have any security at anytime.

  115. leslie 2015-12-28 17:54

    wow jenny, i thought u had the final word. took them 5 hours to spin ‘er up again!

  116. Bree S. 2015-12-28 18:28

    Secure from anyone without the clearance to view certain documents sent between members of various committees, Larry.

  117. moses 2015-12-28 18:53

    Porter is that all they work 83 days in the house and senate

  118. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 22:49

    Bree, I’ll address the security point. That would reinforce the mooching point: Noem and Ryan aren’t just taking a roof but additional free protection from government security. I would imagine they would be making the Capitol police’s job harder: instead of everyone clearing out of the building at night, they have a few dozen legislators buzzing about, lights on, making noise, maybe bringing guests (I don’t know—can Kristi buzz a visitor in after hours?), making it harder to tell who’s present legitimately and who might be making trouble. This is supposed to be a government building, not a dorm.

    There may be a legitimate argument that our Congresspeople need security, but if that’s the case, why don’t we just build a full-tilt dormitory and keep our lawmakers on lockdown throughout the session? But imagine our lawmakers all behind a wall, under armed guard 24-7—that doesn’t sound like a representative democracy to me.

    Send me to Washington, and not only will I rent a flat and ride my bike, but I will also not hire a security detail or carry a gun.

  119. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-28 22:51

    Ror—Rayburn vs. Longworth? Arggh! Two roofs! You got me there.

    But Ror, if the financial argument makes so much sense, why haven’t Congresspeople always done this? Why don’t they all live in their offices? Could it be because a lot of them recognize that they work better if they sleep and eat somewhere else?

  120. mike from iowa 2015-12-29 09:00

    moses-Paul Ryan Eyes 2016 …. In the meantime, he has scheduled the Congress to work only 82-83 days next year.

    They usually average around 126 days,but almost zero 5 day work weeks. That is only 6 months of work time for most anyone else. They should be paid as extremely part time dipshits.

  121. Craig 2015-12-29 09:54

    Cory: “Why don’t they all live in their offices?”

    Many have shared buildings on K street or elsewhere and I question how much of this is funded by “donors” or other legal but ethically questionable means. Others have residences (apartments or even homes) because they tend to stay in DC longer and meet with donors or other special interests. Some have spouses who have full time jobs in DC or Virginia (often lobbyists or consultants) so it makes more sense for them to have homes where the family can reside.

    Those who sleep in their offices would likely be those who have no need or desire to hang out in DC any more often than necessary, which one could argue is a good thing depending upon how corruptible you feel a particular person could be.

    Let’s face it – members of Congress get a lot of perks that most of us would never get. They can park a car in certain places for free even years after they exit Congress, they can use the Congressional gym for life etc. These things might cost the taxpayer a few dollars, but in the scope of things we have more pressing concerns. One single F-35 fighter would likely cover all of these types of expenses for as century give or take, so let’s not confuse our focus. Besides – if Tom Daschle wants to return to use a gym and share some ideas with a few freshman Senators I’m all for it.

    MFI: “he has scheduled the Congress to work only 82-83 days next year”

    Can we draw a distiction between the number of days Congress is actually in session vs. the number of days a Congressperson actually “works”? Democrat or Republican, Conservative or Liberal, I’m quite certain you won’t find a member of Congress who only “works” 80-some odd days a year. Yes a lot of their time is spent raising funds to win their next election (we can argue that topic another time) but they spend a lot of time back in their home states dealing with issues that impact the people. They attend public events, they may give a speech or two at various graduations, they attend ribbon cuttings for new government funded projects, they rub shoulders with leaders and those of influence, and they might even be bothered to draft a letter back to a constituant or spend some time reading or drafting legislation during the days they aren’t actually in session. Plus, there are those junkets and “fact-finding trips” that occur at times when they aren’t in session.

    I know it is fun to pick on members of Congress for their seemingly lax schedule, but if we are honest about the situation I’m sure most members of Congress are a lot like owners of small businesses where they are never truly off the clock and they are only as successful as the amount of effort they put into the job. Whether it was Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin, Tim Johnson, Bill Janklow, or Kristi Noem probably doesn’t change the total number of days they “worked”.

  122. jerry 2015-12-29 10:05

    Craig, they are getting paid 1 million bucks for staff that do all the on the clock work you speak of. Total days worked are much much less than that of their predecessors. This bunch in congress have done little if anything other than vote NO on everything Obama.

  123. Craig 2015-12-29 10:21

    Jerry I complete understand we may not approve of what certain members of Congress accomplish and we may find that they are not effective – not argument there. I’m merely saying that most members of Congress do spend a lot of their days working… in fact I’d argue much like the President when he goes on vacation, there really is no such thing as a day off. There are always briefings and memos and important events that need to be addressed regardless of what time it is or whether it is a Sunday.

    Their respective staff members do put in a lot of hours and it is a very demanding job, but the typically member of Congress is working just as hard. They might be working towards things we don’t agree with or working on legislation for something that goes against our beliefs, but they are still working. To suggest they only work less than 100 days a year is simply intellectually dishonest and we know it.

  124. jerry 2015-12-29 10:45

    Craig, the staff reads all of the law texts from front to back, inside and out. They have meetings to discuss these findings before the boss even enters the picture. The hog house bills have conferences with other staffs and on it goes. The chief of staff goes through all of this before presenting the decision to vote either yes or in this bunch’s case, NO and passes it on to them so they can voice it. The boss works for reelection, and only reelection. They must utilize the time they can for their lobbyists to bring in the money. Ask Thune where he got his war chest, or Rounds with the 9 million or daffy with her war chest. This is how it is done. Take a look at the number of lobbyists in Washington. Take a look at the number of lobbyists here in South Dakota alone, this bunch does nothing to earn the money we send to them. They cannot even get the Pentagon to balance their books to lower the deficit. They work hard in Washington for the gravy. When was the last thing that either of these three did for South Dakota?

  125. Daniel Buresh 2015-12-29 10:54

    What a petty topic and even more petty comments by the resident morons. Next thing, that douchebag from Iowa will be telling us teachers deserve less pay because they work part time.

  126. Craig 2015-12-29 10:58

    DB I thought perhaps you would be taking the high road until you inserted such colorful insults as “morons” and “douchebag”.

    Petty comments indeed.

  127. mike from iowa 2015-12-29 11:14

    I agree DB,Steve King is a dooshbag.

  128. mike from iowa 2015-12-29 11:20

    Craig,these over worked congressvarmints you describe have large staffs to do the evry day grunt work of writing letters,kissing babies and telling the world how hard Joe Blow is working and fighting for his contituents. They spend too much time fund raising and it should not be done on the taxpayer’s dime. And wingnut led congresses have a reputation for doing very little work when they are in session.

  129. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-29 11:49

    Craig, there’s work and there’s work. I’ll concede that on the 283 days when Kristi isn’t in the Capitol next year, she won’t be just sitting back at the Highway 81 hacienda playing Xbox. She’ll spend a lot of those days doing something related to her job. But how many of those 283 days will she spend doing the job South Dakotans elected her to do, and how many will she spend doing the job her party and her House leadership expect her to—fundraising? Recall the reports that members of Congress spend more than half of their time in Washington fundraising. Does that ratio hold on the ground back home?

    I know I’m talking wishfully rather than about conditions as they are, but imagine the better government we might get if work meant work for the people, if Congress established an expectation that its Senators and Representatives would get together for full-time work, at least for a teacher’s workyear: 180 contact days where we all come together in the same place and work together to produce what the taxpayers expect; then we take our three months (August, September, October?) to head home, clear our heads, do some independent study, boost our credentials, and put together good ideas and plans for when we go back to work after the election.

  130. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-29 11:50

    (Hey, Daniel: I don’t think the comment I just made is petty at all! And I will gladly cede the “Kristi only works 83 days!” line if everyone else promises to vigorously reject the “teachers only work none months a year” line during the Blue Ribbon K-12 pay debates. :-) )

  131. mike from iowa 2015-12-29 12:10

    DB-what a sad,unhappy little person you must be.

  132. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-29 12:22

    But hey! How about we put every concern we hear here (hee hee!) about security, DC rental prices, Congresspeople going Washington and losing touch with the home folks, etc., let’s revisit a proposal I dreamed up when Larry Pressler was Senator (I’ve mentioned this under another post… if someone can remember which one, feel free to submit the link): how about e-Congress? Hold just a few meetings of the full House and Senate in Washington, maybe once every two months (State of the Union? final budget vote?), then do everything else Congressional by teleconference. Let members of Congress do all their work, including committee hearings and votes, by secure Internet connection. Let them put their main office with all their key staff back home, away from the DC lobbyists and fundraisers. Let Kristi drive into Castlewood for coffee, chat with her neighbors, then open up her laptop and cast her vote on the Farm Bill right then and there. Remove the opportunity for most of the year for terrorists to attack the Capitol and wipe out most of our elected representatives.

    Let Congresspeople work from home rather than sleep in their offices—let me legislate from Aberdeen—and I’ll declare my candidacy for U.S. Senate right now!

  133. L Collins 2015-12-29 13:02

    Cheap, disgusting headline!!

  134. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-29 13:49

    Indeed, the cheapness of our mooching Republican legislators is disgusting.

  135. Roger Cornelius 2015-12-29 14:00


    Paul Ryan limited the congressional schedule to 83 days so he could spend more time with his family, if fact he demanded that limitation before he would take the speaker’s position.

    Send him your proposal, he would love it.

  136. Mose 11 2015-12-30 05:43

    C.H. You run against photo op I chip in the first 500

  137. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-12-30 07:36

    See, Roger? Paul Ryan and I aren’t that different. We both dig family time and whiskers. We both like to work out. Maybe I should send him a note.

    But I wonder—would he miss saying good morning to Kristi at the gym?

    Moses, thanks! Keep that cash handy—we may find some way to put your support to good use. :-)

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