Capitol Hill Bureau Chief
Senators may have assistants in Washington to do their correspondence and driving, but once they get home, many are more likely to be taking orders than giving them, especially when Thanksgiving dinner needs to get on the table.
From three hours of dusting to whipping up a batch of sauerkraut, here are the surprising answers the Capitolist got when we asked senators, "Are you cooking for Thanksgiving this year?" Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.):
Yes! I fry turkeys. I fry two turkeys. One you can eat then and one you can eat later. I still haven't burned the porch off. We have a place up in northern Arizona, and the whole family will all be there -- the Marine guy, the Navy guy [his sons], Meghan. . . . Everybody will be there. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.):
I am cooking a 30-pound turkey with all of the trimmings that go with it. My entire family is together, including my four grandkids, and I am so grateful for this blessing. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska):
No, no, no! My husband is the cook in our family and always has been. I married him because he owned a restaurant and was the chef. So he does all the cooking and I set the table and do all of the relishes. I don't even do the side dishes, but I do do the sauerkraut, because sauerkraut comes from the polish side of the family. One of our traditions is when you have so much sweetness, if you have a little bite of sauerkraut, it allows you to eat a little bit more. So I always do the sauerkraut.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa): My wife does all the cooking; I do the vacuuming and the dusting. My wife cooks for about 36 hours at the farm in Iowa and it will all be gobbled up. The first person is away from the table in 20 minutes. It's sort of a shame. The vacuuming and dusting will take me two to three hours, because I vacuum the whole house, not just the living room and dining room.
I'm looking forward to my wife's famous baked beans and her famous apple pie. I just told some people we're having 20 people at dinner, and my wife told me we'll have 25. We have five children, nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. We don't have a big home in Iowa, but we do have a long table that has about eight leaves in it and we put up a long card table.
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.): Of course! No actually, I help clean up . . . and I do what ever my wife of 47 years tells me to do.
Sen. Frank Lautenburg (D-N.J.): I do the eating. Other than my sympathies to the turkey family, to me the Thanksgiving holiday is the greatest holiday that exists because I really feel emotionally attached to all of the good fortune we've had in this country. I've had two good careers and 10 grandchildren. We should all be grateful for the democratic country that we have.
Tagged: barbara boxer
, chuck grassley
, frank lautenberg
, john mccain
, Lisa Murkowski
, patrick leahy
, thanksgiving dinner