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Political Trivia Test with Elving and Rudin

Especially for Independence Day, Liane Hansen tests the political trivia knowledge of NPR editors and NPR.org columnists Ron Elving and Ken Rudin. The questions are tough, and you may even learn some American history you didn't know before.

Bonus Trivia Questions:


1. Thirty members of the current House and Senate have a parent who also served in Congress. Only one belongs to a different party from that parent. Who is it?

2. Which president served in the Senate both before and after his presidency?

3. Where and when did the Congress meet for the first time?

4. Name two prominent Republican senators -- one retired, one still serving -- who both grew up in the same small town.

5. Who was the longest-serving Speaker of the House?

American Presidents and Vice Presidents

6. Name the three presidents who died on Independence Day. Bonus: Which One Died First?

7. Which president was born on Independence Day?

8. Who gave the first presidential news conference filmed for TV and newsreels?

9. Who was the first president to have a telephone on his desk?

10. Hunter S. Thompson wrote a Rolling Stone cover story called "An Endorsement, with Fear and Loathing." Which candidate did he endorse?

Political Scandals

11. In the Iran-Contra affair during the Reagan administration, who said he would be the "fall guy" but never the "patsy"?

12. In 1964, a top adviser to President Lyndon Johnson was arrested for having sex with a man in the local YMCA, just a few blocks from the White House. For a time he was labeled as the "most famous homosexual in the United States." Who was he?

13. In the wake of her involvement with President Clinton, what product did Monica Lewinsky set out to sell as part of a new business?

14. Which Cabinet member took the fall for the Teapot Dome scandal during the Harding administration?

15. War hero Ulysses S. Grant's presidency was seriously undermined by a scandal involving what commodity?

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Ron Elving is Senior Editor and Correspondent on the Washington Desk for NPR News, where he is frequently heard as a news analyst and writes regularly for NPR.org.
Ken Rudin
Liane Hansen
Liane Hansen has been the host of NPR's award-winning Weekend Edition Sunday for 20 years. She brings to her position an extensive background in broadcast journalism, including work as a radio producer, reporter, and on-air host at both the local and national level. The program has covered such breaking news stories as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the capture of Saddam Hussein, the deaths of Princess Diana and John F. Kennedy, Jr., and the Columbia shuttle tragedy. In 2004, Liane was granted an exclusive interview with former weapons inspector David Kay prior to his report on the search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The show also won the James Beard award for best radio program on food for a report on SPAM.