It might be time to start a "Jeopardy!" Caucus on Capitol Hill. Brian Daner is the latest congressional staffer competing on the syndicated game show.
Fortunately, his employer -- the House Oversight Committee -- was supportive. "It was during a session week, and of course you are always apprehensive about taking vacation days during the session, but I explained it to them and they got very excited too," he told Yeas & Nays.
Daner's first appearance airs Thursday night, but he was in California last November to film for a week. (No spoilers here; the show films a week of episodes in one day.) From online test to audition to air date took a year and a half.
Daner described longtime host Alex Trebek as "very relaxed" and "a riot."
"When you think of him and that image of being so buttoned-down, pronunciation perfect on every word, and then you see him actually in action, it was quite a shock and a pleasant surprise," he said.
Filming paused twice for fact-checking debated answers and to change the word "diminutive -- which Trabek mispronounced in a question -- to "little."
Daner, who plays bar trivia and "relaxes" by browsing an encyclopedia or Wikipedia, said his love of history prepared him more than political work.
"I was always waiting for that question about who was speaker in 1952 or something like that, and it never came," he said.