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D.C. Shadow Senator Flashed Badge To Cops

The office of Shadow Senator for the District of Columbia doesn't come with many perks -- such as, say, the ability to vote or enter the Senate floor -- but the Shadow Senator does get an official U.S. Senate identification card.

The card can get the senator into members-only areas of the Capitol. It can not, apparently, get him out of trouble with the cops. From Washinton City Paper's blog, City Desk:

During a nighttime traffic stop that resulted in drunk-driving charges, Shadow Sen. Paul Strauss repeatedly brandished his U.S. Senate badge to police officers, court documents say.

The records also indicate that Strauss’ blood-alcohol level was at twice the legal level of intoxication after his Oct. 1 arrest, which was first reported two weeks ago by City Desk. The details of the arrest come from a police officer’s sworn affidavit, which was recently filed in Superior Court.


While speaking to Strauss, Rodriguez—who gave the affidavit—noted that his breath smelled of alcohol and that he “had a blank stare, blood shot eyes and appeared confused.” Strauss had “difficulty retrieving” his driver’s license, according to the officer’s account, but he had less difficulty producing another form of identification: While handing over his license, Strauss “displayed his US Senate ID with his right hand…[and] continued to hold the US Senate ID the entire time” until he was told to get out of the car.

“Is this necessary?” Strauss asked.

It became immediately apparent why he might have wanted to remain seated: Strauss, Rodriguez wrote, was “very unsteady on his feet…swaying from side to side and back and forth.” He walked to the rear of the car, grasping it for support, and again pulled out his Senate ID.

His badge did not sway police.

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