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Capitol Hill

Accuracy In Media Chairman on Rep. Sanchez’s ‘Big’ Asset

Last week, under the heading of irony, we wrote about one half of a pair of sisters in Congress telling MSNBC how she’d faced sexual harassment and “unwanted touching” in the workplace.

Meanwhile, the other got some touching of her own later that night as the only female in the Congressional baseball game. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Penn.) gave Rep. Linda Sanchez a congratulatory pat on the rear—not an uncommon occurrence in sports, but still one that raised the eyebrows of a couple of Roll Call reporters in attendance.

Today, we bring you this response to our story from Don Irvine, chairman of Accuracy in Media, a conservative, media watchdog. Ivan says on his Twitter profile he’s doing his best to combat “liberal media bias” and “politically incorrect lunacy.”

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Rep. Sanchez Gets ‘Smacked On the Ass’ In Congressional Baseball Game

Yesterday, Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) revealed on MSNBC while talking about sexual assault in the military that she’d been a victim herself. “Yes, I was in a business situation where I was being sexually harassed and sexually assaulted, unwanted touching and other issues,” she told Thomas Roberts.

Then, last night, her sister Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA),  got a few touches of her own in the congressional baseball game from Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Penn.), according to two Roll Call reporters who saw it happen.


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Connie Schultz to Keynote YWCA Conference

Pulitzer Prize-winning nationally syndicated columnist Connie Schultz will keynote the YWCA’s closing conference event this Saturday at the Hyatt on Capitol Hill. Schultz, who writes regularly for Parade Magazine, is the wife of Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), who plans to attend and hear his wife speak. Actress Eva Longoria will receive an award the night before for her work surrounding racial justice.

Of course there’s a link between Brown and YWCA. Naturally, Brown’s association with the YWCA goes back a generation, according to a release, when the Senator’s mother served two terms as president of the Mansfield YWCA. She was also on its board for 12 years, and was president of the Ohio Council of YWCAs.

Media may attend. See the fine print. Read more

Male Reporters Harden Stances on Weiner Clash With Female Scribes

Some male reporters felt the need to get in a dick swinging contest with Donald Trump this afternoon. The subject matter: Ironically, ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.).

On Wednesday we reported that TWT Senior Op-ed Writer Emily Miller wrote that she and a female colleague Susan Crabtree had alleged that Weiner had harassed them during conversations on Capitol Hill. In Miller’s case, she says a heated Weiner got inches from her face and subjected her to humiliating sexual comments as she tried to question him on the sexting scandal. Crabtree, meanwhile, says Weiner erected his middle finger at her in the Speaker’s Lobby in front of gobs of reporters.

Today, Trump, an expert on pretty much everything known to mankind, retweeted Miller’s story and the crowd went wild. Because retweets actually do mean endorsements now don’t they? Trump wrote, “Must read article by @EmilyMiller: ‘Anthony Weiner is a twit who treats women like dirt.’”

BuzzFeed‘s Andrew Kaczynski (pictured at left) and Politico‘s Alex Burns  jumped all over it, equating that Trump being divorced and sending nasty missives to a columnist was equivalent to harassing women in the workplace.

Burns pointed to a story in New York magazine story in which columnist Gail Collins, the first woman to hold the position of Editorial Page Editor at NYT, recounts the time Trump sent her story back to her with her face circled with “The Face of a Dog” written all over it. Burns added, “Seriously, Donald Trump doesn’t demean women?” And Kaczynski cracked, “Twice divorced Trump.”

Miller (pictured above in pink) shot back on Twitter, “Divorce has NOTHING to do with demeaning women in the workplace.” She told FishbowlDC, “I am shocked these male reporters will do anything to defend Anthony Weiner’s pattern of harassing female reporters on Capitol Hill. Clearly, they can’t understand how humiliating it was for us and how difficult Weiner made it to do our job.”

She remarked on what it was like to interview Weiner versus Trump. Read more

TWT Writer Puts Weiner’s Ass on Blast

TWT‘s Emily Miller isn’t exactly shy and wilting. So her story this afternoon, in which she clocks former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) for the way she alleges that he treated female journalists, shouldn’t shock you.

But it might.

Miller’s report includes her own account and that of  her colleague, Susan Crabtree. “He didn’t just treat strange women like sex objects,” she writes, “he harassed female journalists who work on Capitol Hill. Two of us work at The Washington Times.”

And so it begins, the media frenzy that will be Weiner’s bid for New York mayor.

“Weiner clearly doesn’t respect women — whether the ones he sends naked pictures or reporters in the workplace,” Miller told FishbowlDC. “He should have shrunk away in shame after getting caught. The female voters in New York should listen to my tape of his lies before even considering him for mayor.”

In Crabtree’s case, she reports that Weiner gave her the middle finger in front of a gaggle of other reporters in the Speaker’s Lobby. In Miller’s… Read more

Politico Caves to Sen. McConnell’s Office

If you’re looking for the video on Politico’s website featuring Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) Chief of Staff Josh Holmes, then good luck.

Roll Call’s Meredith Shiner, a former staff writer at Politico, reported that as of Thursday, the video had been removed from the advertising page of the Rosslyn, Va. news outlet’s website at the request of McConnell’s office.

As the piece explains, the video may have violated Senate Ethics Rules, which prohibit senators and the staffs from using their “official congressional capacity” to endorse outside entities. This would not prevent Holmes (pictured at left) from endorsing Politico as an avid reader, but it does apply to the use of his chief of staff title.

From Roll Call:

“The video, posted earlier this week under the ‘audience’ tab of Politico’s advertising page, features Josh Holmes and identifies him with the title: “Chief of Staff, U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, KY.” Holmes spends the first half of the video explaining his job, with shots taken inside McConnell’s office, and the second half of the video explaining why he reads the Washington publication. The video ends with the top staffer saying, “I’m Josh Holmes and I’m a Politico.”

A shortened version of the video can be found here on Vimeo.

The full video was removed from the advertising page but can be found on a different Politico page, by itself, which Roll Call found “via a live Politico link.” Politico Editor-in-Chief John Harris was asked by FBDC to comment on the situation, but is on the road and unable to respond so he passed the request along to Sara Olson, Politico‘s VP of Marketing.

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NPC Calls on Obama to Explain DOJ Mess

In an evening press release, the National Press Club issued a request to the Obama Administration to publicly explain the reasons why the DOJ secretly obtained the phone records of AP reporters.

“This appears to be a gross violation of press freedom,” said National Press Club President Angela Greiling Keane, a Bloomberg News reporter. “If there’s a good explanation for this, the public has a right to hear it promptly.”

In a May 10 letter, DOJ told AP that last year it had obtained two months of personal and professional phone records for AP reporters working the House Press Galleries as well as AP bureaus in Washington, New York, and Hartford.

CQ Roll Call Launches Food Contest

CQ Roll Call is hosting its annual “Taste of America” contest. It’s a tournament-style food competition that pits state against state in a March Madness style bracket. Beginning today, readers will decide the winner by voting online for their state’s signature food.

The contest debuted in 2011. All the foods are listed here. Some notables: Virginia – fried oysters; Pennsylvania – Philly Cheesesteak; Ohio – buckeyes; North Dakota — sunflower seeds; Nevada — Chuckwagon Buffet (this is not dog food); Utah – cherry cobbler; Delaware – peach pie; and New York – hotdog.

The final eight states will be part of a reception at Nationals Ballpark prior to the Congressional Baseball Game, of which CQ Roll Call is a founding sponsor, where the winner will be announced on June 13. Publicist Sujata Mitra explained: “Members of Congress and their offices from the Elite 8 are invited to participate at the reception where the top 8 dishes are served and the winner is announced. It’s been a lot of fun the last two years and we’re looking forward to seeing who makes it to the Elite 8 this year!”

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CQ Roll Call Offers Buyouts

This just in…

As part of the transition from print to digital, CQ Roll Call has announced that it’s offering a “small handful” of employees in editorial voluntary buy-out packages. In order to achieve their goals, they have to make reductions to the print product, hence the buyout option. There are 180 employees in the department. The number of buyouts needed depends on who takes it — obviously a person earning more will cancel out having to eliminate other positions. The goal is to complete the process within two weeks, but there is no set deadline date.

UPDATE: The newsroom is clearly on edge and yet eerily pleased this is being spun as good for the company. The general sentiment: “No matter what anyone does, they can get cut at any turn.” (Paraphrasing): As is the case with many pubs, this one gets made with fewer and fewer people. The folks in London want to starve newsroom resources and keep more for themselves. Management doesn’t take responsibility for its own decisions. Many reporters are looking to business side employees who have left to secure them jobs elsewhere.

See the memo. Read more

Senator Takes a Bath at Gala

There are easier ways to get baptized.

Now here’s some Washington gossip we can get behind. Roll Call‘s HOH reported last night, just as the Boston bomber 7-Eleven stickup and shootings were underway, that Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Ohio) had fallen into a fountain at a gala at the National Building Museum.

See how Coburn’s spokesman handled the news. Why can’t all flaks have a sense of humor?

See the full item here.