Virginia legislators took time from wrapping up the people's business on Friday, the penultimate day of the 2012 General Assembly session, to participate in the annual "Sensitivity Caucus Awards Day," facilitated by Delegates Terry G. Kilgore, Scott Republican, and R. Steven Landes, Augusta Republican.
Delegate Joseph D. "Fightin' Joe" Morrissey, Henrico Democrat, won the "pop-up" award for rising to speak more than 50 times on bills during the session.
"Your number has been retired. You're in the hall of fame," Mr. Scott reassured him. "There is hope for the rest of us."
Mr. Morrissey, though, then turned the tables, announcing that he would present the first annual "TMI award," prompting an “uh-oh” from House Speaker William J. Howell, Stafford Republican.
The award, not surprisingly, went to Delegate David B. Albo, Fairfax Republican, whose tale of how romancing his wife went awry when he flipped his television from the Washington Redskins channel to a debate about controversial abortion legislation almost instantly went viral.
Mr. Albo was presented with a poster featuring his face superimposed on the figure of a Redskins player wearing No. 21.
"What's really nice about that is it's got his IQ on the jersey, too," quipped Mr. Howell before quickly adding, "I was just kidding about that."
Many people have long considered Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. to be the state's most powerful lawmaker, but no one knew he was this powerful.
During Senate proceedings last week, the Prince George's Democrat told members that Sen. Delores G. Kelley had taken a minor fall that morning and was not expected to join them that day in Annapolis.
"She's going to miss the session today but we'll remember her in our prayers," Mr. Miller said.
Apparently, Mr. Miller has a direct line to the man upstairs — and we don't mean Gov. Martin O'Malley whose office is on the second floor of the State House — because within minutes Ms. Kelley, Baltimore County Democrat, strolled into the chamber and took her seat to the applause and surprise of Senate members.
The surprise soon turned to laughter throughout the chamber.
"I was just telling people to pray for you, and like Lazarus here she comes," Mr. Miller said. "Prayers work!"
No word on whether Mr. O'Malley has asked the Senate president to put in a good word for his offshore-wind bill or ailing gas-tax proposal.
Walk it off
The D.C. Council is trying to be healthy these days.
Local students brought city lawmakers a nutritious morning meal to tout the city's top-rated school breakfast program, and now council Chairman Kwame R. Brown said fitness options may expand at the John A. Wilson Building.
Ahead of Tuesday's legislative meeting, Mr. Brown said unused space in the building will soon be occupied by two donated, use treadmills for use by city employees. Exercise is important, after all, but the chairman — cognizant of the local media's ability to stretch a good yarn, especially when it comes to spending during a challenging budget season — wanted to make sure everyone understood the modest offering.
"Not a super gym, not a Gold's Gym," Mr. Brown said. "We're talking about two treadmills in a room — a treadmill room."
• David Sherfinski, David Hill and Tom Howell Jr. contributed to this report
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