Taking the rep.’s car out for a spin

Rule No. 1 for congressional staffers: Don’t borrow your boss’s car without telling him. Or maybe it’s “Don’t blog about your sex life.” In either case, the car thing is pretty high up there.

If you must break that rule and slip away with the keys, at least don’t get in a wreck.

And, if you happen to break both of those rules, don’t then tell the Capitol Police the congressman gave you permission to take it. Officers know how to reach members, even when they’re on a retreat.

Apparently, one of Rep. Tom Tancredo’s staffers didn’t get the memo. The Colorado Republican got a phone call from Capitol Hill’s finest during the GOP retreat earlier this year about his Toyota Prius (Tancredo? A hybrid? Who knew?).
The congressman was asked if he had authorized the young staffer to take his car.

Um, no, Tancredo responded. Why?

Because he’d just driven it into another car.

Suffice it to say the young man no longer works for Tancredo. But what was he doing with the car?

“I don’t know,” Tancredo responded. “I guess he needed a ride home.”


Shea-Porter may have already lost a vote



Freshman Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-N.H.) is a Republican target after pulling a major upset in November, and her reelection race is expected to be extremely tight next year.

Just two months after she was sworn in, the congresswoman may have already lost a vote she had in 2006.

Peter Macdonald, a disabled former Marine who supported Shea-Porter last year, recently sent the lawmaker a letter that raised alarms. Capitol Police investigated and authorities in New Hampshire last week questioned Macdonald.

The letter to Shea-Porter, according to the New Hampshire-based Foster’s Daily Democrat, stated, “Killing when all other means of redress fails is what our constitution obliges us to do …  Killing the judges, government officials and others whom [sic] violate our constitution is my obligation.”

Macdonald told the paper he wrote the letter after watching a TV show about war. During a town hall-like meeting with the legislator, Macdonald became upset when she admitted having not read his letters.

“I said to her, so the 75 people could hear me, ‘Lady, you just lost my vote.’”

Republicans shouldn’t get too excited. After his anger subsided, Macdonald said he still likes Shea-Porter and may vote for her again.


Inhofe goes off on the media


Sen. James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeBroad, bipartisan rebuke for proposal to pull troops from Africa Lawmakers push back at Pentagon's possible Africa drawdown Senators take oath for impeachment trial MORE (R-Okla.) is not a big fan of the media. That was made quite clear during his address at the Conservative Political Action Conference last week.

Inhofe attacked CNN, The New York Times, and even the Weather Channel for their coverage of global warming.
The media wasn’t his only target during a half-hour speech that attracted a lot of laughs.

He said “extremists” don’t want to drill for oil, don’t want fossil fuels and don’t want nuclear power.

“Right now,” he said, “they don’t even want wind anymore because it’s killing the birds.”

Inhofe noted that he has been called many names, such as “crazy man,” “science abuser,” “Holocaust denier,” “Neanderthal” and the old reliable “Attila the Hun.”

But the senator takes pride in being called some of these things “considering where they’re coming from.”



K St. insider: I’m not interesting


Gerald Cassidy, who is the subject of a 27-part series in The Washington Post that started Sunday, has set up a blog at www.cassidy.com /blog to respond to the newspaper’s reporting.

Cassidy’s first response: Why me, and why this much space?

The lobbying legend predicts “readers will steadily decline after growing bored.”

He acknowledged in his posting that some of his longtime competitors “will get a kick out of this, but I truly think there are more pressing issues the Post should follow with this kind of zeal.”

Cassidy cooperated with the Post and said it so far has done “a fair job.” 


Rudy Giuliani: Did I mention Reagan yet? Reagan, Reagan.


While former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) may have won the straw poll taken at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) last weekend, ex-New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani emerged victorious in the informal “Reagan-off” that seemed to be taking place between the candidates vying for the conservative vote.

Giuliani mentioned the Gipper’s name 13 times during his speech to the packed ballroom at the Omni Shoreham hotel on Friday afternoon.

Romney mentioned the 40th president only twice during his address to the conference, falling behind Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), who mentioned Reagan’s name four times. Romney tied with Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) and former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) but came out ahead of Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.), who mentioned the 40th president just once.


Yarmuth next up with Colbert


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has dodged many interview requests from Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report.” But some of the Democrats whom Pelosi helped get to Congress have shown no fear in going head to head with its host, Stephen Colbert.

The latest frosh on will be Rep. John YarmuthJohn Allen YarmuthBlue Dogs push Democrats to pass budget Democrats don't expect to do 2020 budget Trump shocks, earns GOP rebukes with Dingell remarks MORE (Ky.), who taped an interview about a month ago. The episode airs Thursday.
“We had a lot of fun,” Yarmuth said in a release. “I know he’ll make me look silly, but when you spend a lot of time in Washington, you run the risk of taking yourself too seriously. I hope some Louisvillians will be able to join me for a laugh — even if it is at my expense.”

— Jackie Kucinich and Mike Soraghan contributed to this page.