Washington, D.C. U.S. Rep.-elect Nancy Boyda, D-Topeka, turned the key at 9:45 a.m. EST today and opened her new Congressional office. The Great Seal of Kansas was posted next to the front door on the seventh floor of the Rayburn House Office Building.
"When you think about having the plaque outside, Rep. Nancy Boyda of Kansas, that's kind of - eye-opening is the word I'm looking for. It kind of makes it a reality," Boyda said as her staff members were settling in and spent a few minutes exploring the freshly painted office.
Boyda has been preparing for this day for nearly two months by meeting with constituents in Kansas. It will become official when she will be sworn in Thursday afternoon on the House floor when the 110th Congress begins its session.
With receptions, meetings and a House Democratic caucus scheduled this afternoon, incoming House leaders on both sides of the aisle have planned press conferences on Capitol Hill to roll out legislative agendas.
Boyda said Wednesday morning was mostly about settling into the office with her staff. She will have a staff meeting this afternoon to help acquaint her aides who will work in offices in Washington, Topeka and Pittsburg.
Boyda defeated U.S. Rep. Jim Ryun, R-Lawrence, in November for the 2nd District of Kansas seat, which includes the western half of Lawrence and Topeka, Manhattan and much of eastern Kansas.
During an interview this morning, Boyda said she would co-sponsor bills on ethics reform and reinstating loan and grant funding for colleges.
Boyda, an incoming member of the House Armed Services Committee, also made a statement about the recent execution of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.
"I think people are glad that that chapter is over, but I don't think it's going to have any long-term impact on what actually happens day-to-day in Iraq," Boyda said.
She also said she hoped to travel to Iraq in the next couple months and spend time outside the Green Zone to gauge the status of the war and security situation.
This morning, Boyda received a welcome from U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Lenexa, whose district includes the eastern half of Lawrence. Moore's office and the personal office of incoming House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., are on the same floor as Boyda's staff.