Here Are The 15 Most Memorable Moments Congress Had In 2015

The 114th Congress had some major shakeups in 2015, let’s take a look back at some of the legislative branch’s most memorable moments this year.

    1. John Boehner unexpectedly steps down as speaker of the House

      U.S. House Speaker Boehner steps away from the lectern after addressing reporters following a House Republican caucus meeting at the U.S. Capitol in Washington
      REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

      The Ohio Republican shocked Capitol Hill in September when he announced he was resigning his seat at the end of October, citing

    2. Paul Ryan is elected as new House speaker

      REUTERS/Gary Cameron
      REUTERS/Gary Cameron

      It took some persuasion to convince the former chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee to run for the position, but eventually the Wisconsin Republican agreed. Ryan was sworn in as speaker on Oct. 29.

    3. Pope Francis makes historic appearance before Congress

      Mark Wilson/Getty Images
      Mark Wilson/Getty Images

      Pope Francis addressed a joint meeting of Congress for the first time in history in September, the pontiff’s words moved several congressman and the vice president to tears.

    4. Rep. Aaron Schock steps down following “Downton Abbey” decorating scandal

      Aaron Schock poses for the June 2011 cover of Men's Health magazine
      Aaron Schock poses for the June 2011 cover of Men’s Health magazine

      The Illinois Republican was once seen as a rising star in the Republican party, but resigned in disgrace in March after it came out he spent thousands to decorate his “Downton Abbey”-inspired office followed by accusations of taxpayer dollars and campaign funds.

       

    5. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy drops out of speaker race

      REUTERS/Larry Downing
      REUTERS/Larry Downing

      The California Republican was largely expected to succeed Boehner as speaker of the House, surprising many when he said he wasn’t the man for the job.

    6. Hillary Clinton appears before Benghazi Committee

      Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton arrives at the House Select Committee on Benghazi, on Capitol Hill in Washington Oct. 22, 2015
      REUTERS/Gary Cameron

      Lawmakers grilled the former secretary of state for roughly 11 hours during the marathon congressional hearing in October.

    7. Lawmakers fail to block Iran Nuclear Deal

      Photo by Juliegrace Brufke
      Photo by Juliegrace Brufke

      Despite pushback seen from members of both parties, lawmakers failed to block the controversial Iran nuclear agreement, which lifts sanctions placed on the Middle Eastern country.

    8. Rep. Jim Jordan and Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards spar over videos during Congressional hearing

      Jim Jordan Unloads On Abortion Aficionado Cecile Richards [screenshot CSPAN3]
      Jim Jordan Unloads On Abortion Aficionado Cecile Richards [screenshot CSPAN3]

      Ohio Republican Jim Jordan went after Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards for flip-flopping on her apology for a staff member’s remarks in one of the undercover videos allegedly discussing harvesting fetal body parts for profit during a congressional hearing in September. “You don’t apologize for things that are inaccurate, you apologize for things that are accurate,” he said in the exchange. “And you said that there were statements in that first video that I want to apologize for.”

    9. Sen. John McCain takes the reins as chairman of the Armed Services Committee

      REUTERS/Yuri Gripas
      REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

      It seemed suiting the Arizona Republican and former prisoner of war take over as the head of the powerful Senate committee.

    10.  Harry Reid dons black eye following incident with exercise band

      REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
      REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

      The Senate minority leader sustained some major injuries, including loss of vision in his right eye and broken ribs, after an accident involving the slip of an exercise band. The Nevada Democrat, who is set to retire after this term, is now suing makers of the Thera-Band.

    11.  Paul Ryan grows a beard

      U.S. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) holds a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington December 10, 2015. (REUTERS/Gary Cameron)
      REUTERS/Gary Cameron

      Paul Ryan has been rocking his hunting beard — masculinity is back.

    12. Netanyahu addresses Congress

      REUTERS/Gary Cameron
      REUTERS/Gary Cameron

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed a joint meeting of Congress in March, much to the dismay of the president, cautioning of the dangers of the Iran nuclear agreement. ““No deal is better than a bad deal. Well this is a bad deal. It is a very bad deal. We’re better off without it,” he said.

    13. Rep. Michael Grimm steps down after pleading guilty to tax evasion

      REUTERS/Stephanie Keith
      REUTERS/Stephanie Keith

      The New York Republican left Congress in early-January after pleading guilty to charges of tax evasion. The former congressman became notorious after an incident involving Grimm threatening to throw a reporter over a balcony.

    14. Florida Democrat Rep. Alan Grayson shamelessly hates on his estranged wife on television

      Bill Clark, Getty Images
      Bill Clark/Getty Images

      Florida Democrat Alan Grayson had no qualms about airing his dirty laundry regarding his messy divorce with Lolita Grayson on television. “Gold diggers gotta dig. That’s all I’m gonna say,” he told Orlando’s ABC affiliate WFTV in May after he called the cops on his wife for allegedly used his credit card to buy groceries and gas.

    15. The House Freedom Caucus was founded

      Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images
      Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

      A group of lawmakers in the lower chamber formed the House Freedom Caucus, which has grown to be very influential, to advance conservative goals. The group was partially credited for Boehner’s resignation.

Honorable mentions:

A not-so-sober Ruth Bader Ginsberg falls asleep during the State of the Union

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsburg nodded off during Obama’s February 2013 State of the Union speech. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Florida Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo breaking his arm falling off a hoverboard