Barbara Walters to pay a visit to Trover Shop

Barbara Walters, host of ABC’s “The View,” plans to sign copies of her new memoir, Audition, at Trover Shop on Capitol Hill on May 8 at 12:30 p.m.

The rules, however, are strict. A flier posted in the window of the bookstore reads: “Only copies of Audition will be signed. No other titles, no memorabilia. Books must be purchased at this event. No packages/backpacks permitted. If you are unable to attend, we are taking pre-paid orders for signed copies now.”


Will Sen. McCain look a songwriting gift horse in the mouth?

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) has a surprise gift for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), his party’s presumptive 2008 presidential candidate. Hatch has written a song for McCain called “Forever Together.”

Hatch sees just one glitch in the gift he’s offering.

“He may not want it,” he said, laughing.

Whatever McCain decides to do, he won’t have grounds to reject Hatch’s song based on Hatch’s songwriting experience; the Utah senator is an accomplished lyricist. He recently wrote a song about the war in Iraq called “Come Home,” and boasted that another one of his songs is included in the score of the new Lifetime Movie Network film, “The Capture of the Green River Killer.” The movie details the story of then-sheriff and now-Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) capturing the killer.

Hatch, who played the violin, piano and organ as a child, began writing hymns in 1996 and has composed more than 300 songs. In his autobiography, Square Peg: Confessions of a Citizen Senator, he recounts playing for U2’s Bono when the rocker was visiting Capitol Hill.

Bono’s one suggestion: Hatch should pen his songs under the pseudonym “Johnny Trapdoor.”

McCain’s campaign refused to say whether the presidential hopeful would “accept” Hatch’s song. Instead, McCain campaign spokesman Jeff Sadosky offered this platitude: “John McCain is very pleased for the support and well wishes from Americans across the country and his friends in the Senate in whatever form they might come.”


Hollywood meets D.C. at Brownstein’s house

Atlantic Media Co. political director Ron Brownstein and his wife, Eileen, are set to throw a soiree at their home Saturday night to showcase paintings by Los Angeles artist Daniel Maltzman. Brownstein recently purchased a painting from the artist after seeing Maltzman’s work on a restaurant on Sunset Boulevard. He immediately fell in love with a painting of a woman and bought a variation called “Babe.”

One painting that will be on sale at the party is particularly timely. It’s called “Clinton vs. Obama” and depicts Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.) in boxing attire, gloves and all.
Maltzman, who recently created an 8-by-5-foot painting of Paris Hilton and gave it to the hotel heiress in Las Vegas, asked Brownstein if he’d throw an art show for him and invite politically influential people. Brownstein made it happen.

RSVPs include Dan Balz of The Washington Post; Betsy Fischer, executive producer of “Meet the Press”; Linda Roth, executive producer of CNN’s “Late Edition”; and political operatives Stan Greenberg and Susan McCue — an adviser to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) — as well as lobbyists Tony Podesta and Steve Elmendorf.

Brownstein, who plans to serve rosemary and pear martinis at the party, said, “It’s not often you get a chance to break out of the political world and look at something different.”

Maltzman refuses to say whom he supports in the presidential race. “You can be pro-Obama or pro-Clinton,” he mused, refusing to reveal his candidate of choice. “I don’t want any enemies. I’m not 100 percent decided.”

Maltzman has created a second painting of the duo that he’s put up for sale. Price tag: $8,500. He said he may give part of the proceeds to charity or to one of the candidates as soon as he makes up his mind.

As for Paris Hilton, he likes her. “She was a doll,” he said. “She was so nice.”