Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) devotes much of his new book, “Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time,” to an imaginary family, the Baileys. According to the tome, he runs every policy decision he makes by the average, middle-class, swing-voting family.
But the Baileys are unlike many American families in one regard: They’ve changed their name. When Schumer discussed his imaginary, sounding-board family to The Hill’s Jonathan E. Kaplan in June of last year, they were named the O’Reillys.
A Schumer spokeswoman said the senator decided to rename his fictional friends when writing the book to make them appeal to a national audience. “He wanted a name that sounded more national … as opposed to more of a New York name,” she said.
And she denied one reason for the name-switcha former Schumer aide had posited. The aide told a Hill reporter that the book’s publisher had ruled O’Reilly “too ethnic” for mass consumption.
“Not true,” the Schumer spokeswoman said. “It was the senator’s decision.”
Fellow lawmakers, gathered at a book bash in Schumer’s honor hosted by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y), seemed to think an (Irish) rose by any other name smells just as sweet. The crowd gathered at the Hill’s Hunan Dynasty on Tuesday, which included Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidBottom line Voters need to feel the benefit, not just hear the message Schumer-McConnell dial down the debt ceiling drama MORE (D-Nev.), Sen. John KerryJohn KerryKerry calls out countries that need to 'step up' on climate change Those on the front lines of climate change should be empowered to be central to its solution To address China's coal emissions, the US could use a little help from its friends MORE (D-Mass.), Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), Sen. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseWhat's that you smell in the Supreme Court? The Hill's Morning Report - Ins and outs: Powell renominated at Fed, Parnell drops Senate bid On The Money — Biden sticks with Powell despite pressure MORE (D-R.I.), and Rep. Tom Allen (D-Maine), noshed on spring rolls and sushi while toasting Schumer.
New Englanders trot to Globe party
The accents in the air were as thick as chowdah, as the New England congressional delegations mingled at a “welcome-to-Congress” meet-and-greet at the Boston Globe’s D.C. bureau Tuesday night.
Northern lights in attendance included Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), who was spotted yukking it up with Sen. John Sununu (R-N.H.) and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), plus a veritable roll call of House folks like Reps. Edward MarkeyEd MarkeySenators seek to curb counterfeit toys and goods sold online Senate GOP blocks defense bill, throwing it into limbo Equilibrium/Sustainability — Presented by Southern Company — Pledged money not going to Indigenous causes MORE (D-Mass.), Barney Frank (D-Mass.), James McGovern (D-Mass.), John Tierney (D-Mass.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersGOP ramps up attacks on SALT deduction provision Symone Sanders to leave the White House at the end of the year Briahna Joy Gray says Chris Cuomo will return to CNN following scandal MORE (I-Vt.), Richard Neal (D-Mass.), Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.), Peter WelchPeter Francis WelchThe Hill's Morning Report - Ins and outs: Powell renominated at Fed, Parnell drops Senate bid Welch to seek Senate seat in Vermont The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Biden hails infrastructure law, talks with China's Xi MORE (D-Vt.), Joe Courtney (D-Conn.), Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) and Carol Shea-Porter (D-N.H.).
“Politics is sort of a regional industry — and really an obsession — in New England,” bureau chief Peter Canellos said of the gathering. “So it was great to get the whole crowd under one roof.”
Aside from the Globe’s D.C. staff, media types in attendance included Globe Editor in Chief Marty Baron and PBS commentator and columnist Mark Shields.
To our southern gal’s ears, all those Massachusetts accents floating around the Globe’s Connecticut Avenue offices sounded the same, although Markey assured us that there are subtle but definite variations. He was overheard telling guests that he was “tri-lingual” because of his mastery of three of them.
Security warning raises no alarm
It was just another lovely day on Capitol Hill last week: Snow flurries were picturesquely floating past windows, and inside the Dirksen Cafeteria, a packed crowd of serious-minded suits and skirts were eating lunch. The idyllic moment was shattered when suddenly, a woman’s voice came on the loud speaker declaring police had discovered an unusual package in the Senate Hart Building.
Staffers and lawmakers were instructed to stay away from the area.
Despite the alarm, no one flinched. Such interruptions are par for the course on Capitol Hill. And as it usually turns out, the package contained nothing dangerous. “It was cleared with negative results,” e-mailed Capitol Police Public Information Officer Sgt. Kimberly Schneider. “[It] was a backpack left unattended … nothing hazardous found.”
Talk about blas