By Betsy Rothstein - 06/02/08 04:29 PM EDT
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.), who chairs the Senate Finance Committee, may be in control of the nation’s finances, but he may not be so powerful when it comes to his little white French poodle. The pooch was seen recently “on a tear” through the Hart Senate Office Building.
An aide was walking up the stairs when “this little white fluffy dog comes bounding down the stairs — with no leash.”
Not far behind the dog, however, was Baucus and his team of dog-watching aides.
“Maybe he has spent too much time in the city,” said an aide who knows of Baucus and his dog. “I thought Montana men are supposed to have manly dogs.”
Baucus’s office had no comment by press time.
Sharks and jackasses
We were too quick last week to propose our friend, Federal Strategy lobbyist Jason Roe, for an appearance on MTV’s show “Jackass.”
You see, we assumed no one would outclass Roe in jackassism after we learned that he dived into the sea to wrestle a 200-pound shark into his fishing boat.
But we were mistaken; there is a bigger jackass in town.
He’s the political reporter who didn’t believe the ITK story, attested to by eyewitnesses, and spent more than 30 minutes bugging them to try and show it couldn’t be true.
The basis of his debunking theory? It’s Roe’s claim that he kept his flip-flops on throughout the episode.
Ooh, how clever! A forensic investigator in the making (and perhaps a new star for MTV).
Congressman denies being stricken by disco fever
Rep. Timothy Johnson (R-Ill.), who is known for dialing constituents on his cell phone during long walks through the Capitol, was recently spotted strolling through the Speaker’s Lobby off the House floor in what an ITK spy described as “disco” attire.
Johnson was wearing a bright ruby-red shirt with large lapels unbuttoned to the chest, a black blazer, black trousers and a thick gold chain with charms. One observer remarked that he resembled an extra in the movie “Saturday Night Fever.”
Johnson initially grew angry and strongly disputed that his look that day was disco-like, saying he fears that being associated with such a word implies that he uses drugs and drinks alcohol (the congressman says he doesn’t do either).
“I don’t know even what a disco outfit is,” he said. “This is so insulting to me.”
As far as his shirt being unbuttoned, Johnson explained that he had come from the airport and his tie was probably loose around his neck. He also wondered when and where he wore the disco outfit, noting that he sometimes changes his outfit midday.
But a look is a look. At the time of his appearance, several heads turned as he walked through the lobby.
“If this is a story about me not being a good dresser, then I’m guilty as charged,” Johnson said.
He added that he’s not House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) or Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), who are regarded as two of the better-dressed members on the Hill.
After being alerted that ITK was writing about his wardrobe, Johnson showed us his neckwear between floor votes. He asserted that it should not be referred to as a “gold chain” because it is an expression of his religion.
The chain has several charms, including a cross, a fish known as a common symbol of Christianity, and a geometric figure with the initials WWJD (which stand for “What Would Jesus Do?”). As for the red shirt, he said it’s merely a nice dress shirt he owns.
Told that his feedback would be included in this item, Johnson’s sharp tone changed and he started to have fun with it.
“Maybe this is a compliment,” Johnson said. “For someone to think that a 61-year-old still goes to a disco, it’s the greatest compliment to me.”
Johnson spokesman Phil Bloomer, who was initially called on the matter, said, “No, he doesn’t typically dress in a red shirt and gold chains. I’m sorry you don’t approve of his dress. I’m sorry he’s not conforming to the sartorial etiquette of Washington, D.C.”
ITK does not have a problem with Johnson’s wardrobe choice. On the contrary, we love lawmakers who stick out in a crowd.
Media group blasts ‘Sex and the City’ film as anti-Christian
President Bush and some members of Congress are fighting for abstinence-only sex-education programs, but a Christian media watch group out of San Diego is calling for more than that: a boycott of the movie “Sex and the City,” which it dubs “Sluts and the City.”
The group, The Resistance, asks that people refer to the film with this new moniker.
“Tickets to this movie should come with a referral to an STD clinic written on the back,” says Mark Dice, the group’s founder. “This kind of a film encourages young women to practice risky and degrading behaviors. The fact that these women are role models speaks volumes as to how far down the toilet this country has gone.”
In the past, the Resistance demanded that Duke University change the name of their Blue Devils sports teams to something they deem not offensive to the Christian community. The group also recently called for a Starbucks boycott because of a new logo featuring a topless mermaid with legs spread. The Resistance called the company “Slutbucks.”
Abercrombie to postpone birthday weightlifting
Come June 26, Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii) will turn 70. On his birthday, a day on which he traditionally bench-presses 200 more pounds than his age, he faces 270 pounds.
“I don’t think so,” he said, when asked if he was gearing up for the big bench-press. “I’ve been out campaigning so much for Obama that I think I’m going to put it off until after the election.”
Last year he also let the birthday weightlifting go because he had tendonitis.
“You have to train for that,” he says.
Abercrombie began the challenge when he turned 65. He lifted 275 pounds, 10 more than what he needed to.
“This is utterly useless, it has no social value,” he says, laughing at himself.
But, he reasons, it’s a better goal than most.
“You don’t want to do this with drinking, [and] I couldn’t make myself taller,” he says.