Senator Robert C. Byrd grills witnesses about the accident at the Upper Big Branch mine in his home state of West Virginia during a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on Mine Safety Investment on Capitol Hill. Byrd passed away one month later.
When it comes to politics in the United States, Washington, D.C. is ground zero. This is where it all happens, or doesn’t happen as many would complain.
As a photojournalist covering politics, I have a front row seat to history as our democracy works in all of its magnificence and sometimes its ugliness.
At the White House I have been witness to the President meeting with world leaders, signing bills into law, bestowing honors on soldiers and civilians and sometimes answering tough questions from an inquiring press corps.
Feb 2, 2011 – Washington, District of Columbia, U.S. – Senator AL FRANKEN listens to testimony before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on “The Constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act.”.(Credit Image: © Pete Marovich/ZUMA Press)
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) takes notes before a news conference on Capitol Hill to announce that Senate Democrats are introducing legislation to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) holds a news conference to say that House Republicans have not yet decided whether to push forward with a one-week stopgap spending bill to avert a government shutdown.
During a press conference on Capitol Hill Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said that House Speaker Boehner’s plan to extend the debt ceiling is “dead on arrival” in the Senate.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) convers with Senator Chuck Schumer was he makes his way to a press conference on Capitol Hill.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks at a press conference on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. Pelosi spoke about the significance of World AIDS Day and how investments in research and prevention have saved lives. She also discussed pending legislation to extend the payroll tax holiday.
Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke arrives to testify before the Senate Budget Committee on Capitol Hill about the outlook for U.S. monetary and fiscal policy.
Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Patty Murray (D-WA) look on as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid REID (D-NV) speaks at a press conference on Capitol Hill Thursday where Reid said the Senate should pass a two-year $109 billion highway bill in the coming days that will provide a boost to the American economy as the highway construction season begins.
Senate Rules and Administration Chairman Chuch Schumer (D-NY) confers with Senator Al Franken (D-MN) following a news conference on Capitol Hill Wednesday to announce new legislation “to blunt the worst effects” of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision.
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) leaves a press conference on Capitol Hill Wednesday after Republican leaders stepped up calls for at least a one-year extension of the George W. Bush-era tax rates.
Senator John McCain (R-AZ) rides an elevator after speaking to reporters outside of the Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill following him introducing a Senate resolution calling for an independent investigation of the national security leaks within the Obama administration.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) holds his weekly press conference outside of the Senate Chambers on Capitol Hill.
Covering the halls of Congress is an experience like no other. A place where politicians snipe at each other one minute and pat each other on the back the next. One minute you can see Senators having a heated debate over a divisive topic like healthcare and later you might see the same Senators chatting it up like old golfing buddies.
Photographing a hearing where Secretary of State Clinton is being grilled on the tragedy in Benghazi or watching Senator Robert Byrd take the owner of a collapsed coal mine in his beloved state of West Virginia to task is about as real as it gets. And having a vantage point sitting in the area between the witnesses and the Members of Congress puts you right in the center of the action.
An then of course there is the spectacle of everyday citizens rallying and marching to have their voices heard. Whether in favor or in protest, the ability of the people to speak freely is one of this country’s most valued and defended rights. It seems you never have to wait long for a protest to pop up in D.C., and every time one does it is just further proof that Democracy is alive and well.
The politics not withstanding.
Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) wipes a tear while delivering remarks after being elected to a second term as Speaker of the House with 220 votes at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, District of Columbia, U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013.
Senator JOHN KERRY (D-MA) testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during his confirmation hearing to be U.S. Secretary of State.
Anti-abortion activists take part in the March for Life rally in Washington, DC on January 25, 2013. Activists from across the nation participated in the march that commemorates the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, prepares to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Thursday about the Defense Department response to the attack on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, and the findings of its internal review following the attack.
Security surrounds John Brennan as protesters disrupt the Senate (Select) Intelligence Committee hearing room shortly after he arrived for the hearing on his nomination of to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency.
Terrell Anderson, of Detroit, MI, holds his son, Terrell Jr, 3, as he checks out the President’s hair while posing for a photo with President Barack Obama, following a ceremony on Capitol Hill Wednesday to unveil a statue honoring the late civil rights activist Rosa Parks.
The U.S. Capitol in Washington, District of Columbia, U.S., on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, one day left before $85 billion in automatic across the board spending cuts start to take effect if no deal is struck before midnight on Friday.
Spectators listen as Mia Love, Republican Mayor of Saratoga Springs, Utah, speaks at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland.
Pro same sex marriage activist Ryan Toney, 18 of Washington D.C. in front of the Supreme Court in Washington D.C. on Wednesday. Activists on both sides of the same sex marriage issue rallied outside of the Supreme Court as the Court is to hear arguments on the constitutionality the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) DOMA defines marriage as only between a man and a woman.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and former House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) share a moment during an unveiling ceremony for Frank’s portrait Tuesday on Capitol Hill.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee on the Defense Authorization Request for FY2013.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner testifies before the Senate Finance Committee on the President’s FY2013 Budget on Capitol Hill.
Soeaking to the media Tuesday on Capitol Hill, Senate Majority Leader HARRY REID said that he is willing to support a new House Republican plan to extend last year’s payroll tax cut for the rest of this year without requiring budget offsets.
Rain fell as people from across the country participate in the Let Freedom Ring Commemoration celebrating the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.s’ I have a Dream Speech in Washington, District of Columbia, U.S., on Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2013.
President Obama arrives to delivers remarks at a Terry McAuliffe campaign event at Washington-Lee High School, Arlington, Virginia, U.S., on Sunday, November 3, 2013. McAuliffe is the Democratic nominee in the 2013 Virginia gubernatorial election.
Pete Marovich is an award-winning photojournalist based in Washington, D.C. He is currently working as a freelancer, contributing to Bloomberg News Photos, McClatchy-Tribune Photo Service, Getty Images, European PressPhoto Agency, United Press International, NBCnews.com and SIPA Press. His archive is represented by CORBIS.
His photography has appeared in Time Magazine, The New York Times, Newsweek, The Financial Times, The Christian Science Monitor, Esquire, The Wall Street Journal, Mother Jones, Sports Illustrated, Woman’s World, The Huffington Post, Politico, Essence, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Chronicle of Higher Education and The Daily Beast.
Pete lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area with his wife, Jenny, and their two cats.