Today’s Congressional odds and ends

pete-stark2.jpg“Thank you, Pete”: MoveOn.org members from throughout the 13th Congressional District — from Fremont up to Alameda — will deliver “You’re the Decider” messages tomorrow to Rep. Pete Stark, D-Fremont, in thanks for his vote last week against President Bush’s plan to send more troops to Iraq. “We want Rep. Stark to know that we support his vote and are counting on him to end the war in Iraq,” Brenda Salgado of San Leandro said in a news release. They’ll rally at noon at the Veterans’ Memorial at Paseo Padre and Walnut Avenue in Fremont to hear veterans and their relatives speak out, and then march to Stark’s Fremont office at 39300 Civic Center Dr., Suite 220, to present a “human billboard” reading “THANK YOU, PETE;” a cake; and hundreds of handwritten letters bound with yellow ribbons.

lee2.jpgState of the District: Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, will deliver her third annual State of the District address, outlining her legislative priorities for the year to come and reporting on her work over the last year in Washington and in her 9th District, which includes Oakland, Berkeley, Castro Valley and other areas. It’s 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 26, in the Edward R. Roybal Auditorium at the Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building, 1301 Clay St. in Oakland. She’ll almost certainly have something to say about the meeting she and other Congressional Black Caucus members had last week with President Bush at the White House.

tauscher1.jpgTauscher’s new hires: Rep. Ellen Tauscher, D-Alamo, has hired a pair of natives from her 10th District to work in her Capitol Hill office — Beth Ann Pramme, born in Danville, will handle scheduling duties and serve as a press assistant, while Paul Swanson, born in Walnut Creek, will take charge of front-office duties as a staff assistant. But just because they’re natives doesn’t mean they’re naifs. Pramme has worked for more than a year for Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, D-Md., and spent this past campaign season in Racine, Wisc., working on several races, including re-electing a Democratic governor for the first time in 32 years. And Swanson, who recently received a political science degree from Cal, worked for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee last year.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.