Wardrobe malfunctions aren’t just for Super Bowl halftimes: Sen. Amy Klobuchar experienced one of her “most embarrassing moments” when, while presiding over the Senate, a page handed her a note signed “Anonymous” that read, “Pull up your shirt.”
That anecdote is one of the more revealing (ba-dum-bum) in a new book, “The Upper House: A Journey Behind the Closed Doors of the U.S. Senate,” by journalist Terence Samuel.
According to Samuel’s book, the Minnesota Democrat’s unintentional flesh-baring became a joke among some Senators, including Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), and the next time Klobuchar presided over the chamber, she got a second anonymous note. “Your earrings don’t match,” it read. “When she looked up, Tester was cracking up in the back row.”
The book, which follows the Senate class of 2006, also exposes a dirty secret that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid harbors. His “major public indulgence” is catching Saturday afternoon movies when the Senate isn’t in session. (Gasp!)
The Nevada Democrat even shared with Samuel a few of his likes and dislikes. “3:10 to Yuma” got a thumbs-up, as did “In the Valley of Elah,” although Reid told Samuel, “That ugly woman — Charlize Theron, she added little to it.”
There are weightier moments in the tome, which explores the institution of the Senate. Samuel tells HOH that he chose his subjects, including Tester, Klobuchar and Sens. Jim Webb (D-Va.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) because of their varying backgrounds and roles within the chamber.
He says they all had to adjust to the slow pace of Senate life. “You have these people who are very driven, very ambitious, and they know how to get things done,” he says. “But then everything comes to an absolute crawl.”
A Magic Touch at the Hilton
Basketball legend Magic Johnson will join first lady Michelle Obama in Detroit to promote mentoring today, but the L.A. Lakers star came to D.C. on Tuesday to help unveil the $150 million renovation of the landmark Washington Hilton hotel.
And the NBA Hall of Famer wasn’t just a token celebrity cutting the ribbon, either. Johnson’s Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds, which typically allocates money to develop ethnically diverse and densely populated communities, joined Lowe Enterprises in 2007 to buy the Hilton, famously the site of an assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan in 1981 and now home to events such as the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner.
Ros-Lehtinen’s Intern Focus
Most summer Congressional interns get welcomed to Capitol Hill with a tall stack of constituent mail to answer, but in Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s office, the wide-eyed youngsters get the star treatment.
The Florida Republican posted a video to YouTube on Monday featuring her interviewing her new crop of summer interns, asking them about their backgrounds, future plans and goals for the summer. Ros-Lehtinen’s style is rather Oprah-esque, as she encourages the interns and even offers a few hearty cheers.
At one point, the lawmaker even urges a slouching intern to sit up properly.
Ros-Lehtinen tells HOH that she’s done similar videos before, adding that Twitter and Facebook have helped promote them. As more interns join her D.C. and district offices in the next few weeks, Ros-Lehtinen plans on making more videos.
“We’ll have about 30 interns in each office this summer, and these terrific young people help us to catch up with all of our crushing workload,” she says.
A Menu for Lunch, Hold the Oil
When President Barack Obama stopped by Senate Republicans’ weekly lunch on Tuesday, the subjects on the table were weighty topics such as jobs and the economy. But one environmental group envisioned the group chewing some very different fare.
Clean Energy Works, a coalition of groups backing (duh) clean-energy policies, sent out a press release with a suggested menu that included “Gulf Disaster Finger-Pointing Sandwiches” and “Deepwater Turtle Soup — Fresh Turtle in a thick Oil Bisque.”
Entrees included the “BPo-Boy’: Your choice Oysters, Shrimp or Catfish Smothered with Crude Oil” and the “Transocean Special — Blackened Tuna accompanied by Blackened Oysters, Blackened Mussels and Blackened Vegetables on the side.”
Overheard on the Hill
“No matter how cold the weather may be, a Super Bowl set in the New York area will warm the hearts of football fans everywhere by reminding them how the game was meant to be played — in the elements.”
— Sen. Charles Schumer (D), praising the NFL’s decision to hold the 2014 Super Bowl at the New Meadowlands Stadium.
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