Meet the US Senate's Crime Novelist

Barbara Mikulski's heroine is a crime-fighting senator
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2013 6:15 AM CDT
In a Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 file photo, Senate Appropriations Committee member Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., speaks on Capitol Hill.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)
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(Newser) – If the American electorate ever actually throws the bastards behind the shutdown out, at least one career legislator has a plan B in place. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, the Maryland Democrat who's the Senate's longest-serving woman, is also the published author of a pair of novels, notes Roll Call in a look at the little-known tomes. Written in the 1990s, after she was elected to the Senate but before she was any kind of a legislative heavyweight, Capitol Offense and Capitol Venture feature—what else?—a crime-fighting woman senator, though Mikulski has said that her heroine isn't really autobiographical.

To wit, the fictitious Sen. Norrie Gorzack represents Pennsylvania and she practically towers over the 4-foot-11 Mikulski: “She’s 5-feet-4,” Mikulski says. “I’ve always wanted to be 5-feet-4.” But Gorzack, who is appointed to finish the term of a senator who dies, does impart her thoughts on being a member of the Senate (something Mikulski is more than familiar with: she's served since 1987), and takes up the issue of MIA soldiers. Meanwhile, adds the Hill, Mikulski raised a few eyebrows for a completely different reason last week when she called supporters of Ted Cruz "Tea Baggers." (Read more US Senate stories.)

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