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Posts Tagged ‘Carl Leubsdorf’

Brokaw Blasts Nerd Prom, More Journos Follow

On Sunday’s “Meet the Press”, Tom Brokaw was analyzing the Presidential race of 2012 when he took a sharp turn into Curmudgeon-ville to take major swipes at Nerd Prom. He is not pleased about the glittering of the White House Correspondents’ Dinner with stars like George Clooney and Charlize Theron. Some people may argue that at last those stars are politically active and aware of what’s going on the world. The same can’t be said for the likes of Kim Kardashian and Lindsay Lohan.

In any event, reaction started pouring in over Twitter as Brokaw’s comments went viral. WSJ’s Neil King welcomed Brokaw’s comments by saying, “Here’s seconding Brokaw’s takedown of the WH Correspondents Dinner. And here’s predicting the day when POTUS says thanks but no thanks.” Longtime Washington political journo and columnist for the Dallas Morning News Carl Leubsdorf told FBDC, “I think he spoke for many of us.” He went on to say, “Tom is spot on. And as the dinner has become glitzier, fewer seats have gone to actual correspondents and more to corporate executives, advertisers and celebrities. The upcoming 100th WHCA anniversary in 2014 might be a perfect time to consider this, though I’m not too hopeful that will happen.” Something that got the attention of HuffPost’s Michael Calderone was Brokaw’s mention of “taking over the Italian embassy.” It just so happens that was the location of the blowout MSNBC after-party. National Correspondent for The Atlantic, James Fallows also agreed with Brokaw, saying, “Good for Tom B!”

Brokaw is one in a procession of Washington journalists who are trashing what the dinner has become. Late last week we reported on U.S. News & World Report’s Susan Milligan,
who also believes celebs ruin the image of the event. Some may also recall WaPo Dana Milbank‘s take on Nerd Prom last April, in which he says journalists have turned themselves into pimps for the politicians and the stars. He intimated that he grew sickened as he started to RSVP for parties and “made other plans for the weekend.” But Brokaw’s blast is a little bit different. First, he has the highest profile of anyone who has criticized the dinner. Second, he doesn’t seem to differentiate between George Clooney and Lindsay Lohan. He wants Hollywood out of the dinner.

It’s interesting to note that while Twitter was having a field day with Brokaw’s comments, neither Betsy Fischer, Exec. Producer for “Meet the Press”, nor host David Gregory made any comments. Watch Brokaw’s comments in the video below.

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Quotes of the Day

Yahoo! News‘s Olivier Knox: “Hasty iPhone shot of POTUS getting his ‘VIP Guest’ button today.” President Obama drank beer at The Dubliner on Saturday for St. Patrick’s Day.

The Atlantic Magazine Editor’s odd relationship to the semicolon

“Starting to get concerned about my compulsive use of the semicolon; it’s pathological.” — Atlantic Mag Editor Scott Stossel. He added, “This may call for a semi-colonoscopy.”

Doocy or Douchey?

“President Obama did NOT pay cover charge at The Dubliner when he popped in for St Pats Day brew, according to pool producer. POTUS just left.” — FNC Correspondent Peter Doocy, son of Fox & Friends Steve Doocy. The bar allowed the President of the Free World free entrance to The Dubliner on Saturday on St. Patrick’s Day.

Ali’s new ‘Daily Shot’

“The dirty little kitchen is I can do it from my kitchen table and I’m a lazy girl.” — Comedian and author Ali Wentworth on CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday regarding her new morning spot on Yahoo.

In other St. Patty’s Day news…

“Yeah, fat boy, my great grandparents came here so you could puke on the street in broad daylight. Clean that up.” — CNN’s Lizzie O’Leary.

From the Road

“Airports should have gyms so I can get in a work out during these long layovers.” — Politico‘s Juana Summers.

En route to Montreal with Steve Buttry

On Saturday JRC’s Community Engagement Director Steve Buttry was on his way to Montreal. But not without a bit of turbulence. Watch as he initially blames United and eventually eats his words. 1. Of course our flight to Montreal is oversold. #unitedsucks. 2. We were boarding the plane when pilot (or someone in uniform) came out telling us to go back to terminal. 3. Bad weather in Montreal. 4. I maintain that my travel experience is actually common. Just travel a lot and tweet about something that universally sucks. 5. They keep pushing our departure time back: 9, 10, 10:30, now 11. Can’t blame United; Canadian weather page shows fog in Montreal. 6. Finally boarding. Hoping they’ll actually let us on the plane now. Except that the line isn’t moving. 7. Finally boarded our flight to Montreal. Bon voyage!

Discombobulated journo

“Rode bike across town in rain to renew drivers license. when I saw long line I thought should of renewed on-line. then remembered I DID.” — ABC7 TV reporter Stephen Tschida.

In reaction…

“Love when @stevebuttry travels & tweets: All of the pain and frustration of dealing w/airlines without ever having to leave my house” — Lisa Fung, Executive Editor of The Wrap.

Surprise ruined for USA Today Bureau Chief

“Sked’ed delivery of new TV on my husband’s bday today as a surprise. @BestBuy late yesterday said, oops, sorry, no TV 4 sale. #BestBuyBummer” — USA Today Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page, whose husband is Carl Leubsdorf.

Spin the Boybander?

MSNBC’s weekend show “Up With Chris Hayes” is quickly becoming a Boybander Slumber Party. We can’t believe we weren’t invited. With Hayes off this past Saturday, WaPo‘s liberal blogger, Democratic strategist and FBDC Fan Club Prez Ezra Klein jumped in. His guest was none other than lower-tiered Boybander Spencer Ackerman of Wired. Ackerman remarked, as any close friend who wants to get invited on again would, “I think this @ezraklein kid is going places. Just killing it guest hosting #uppers.”

A journo’s story idea up for grabs

“Someone needs to do an in-depth story on @ChuckGrassley’s Twitter war against @HistoryChannel.” — Jordan Fabian, political editor for Univision News.


Quote Taken Out of Context

Whoa! Gridiron Club Sec. Carl Leubsdorf got to first base early this morning. What?!

USA Today‘s Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page tweeted this unusually personal message to CBS Political Director John Dickerson this morning at 5:05 a.m. “@jdickerson We’re up because Carl was trying to make it to first base in a dream and fell out of bed. (He was on the Yankees, BTW.)”

Dickerson replied, “Yes, but did he beat the throw?”


Gridiron Elects New Officers

Gridiron elections were Saturday. The new president is NJ White House Correspondent George Condon. He previously wrote for Copley News Service and the San Diego Union-Tribune. Claim to fame: His bio says he led the reporting team that earned the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for coverage of the corruption of California GOP Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham. Condon isn’t a novice at this sort of leadership role — he’s former President of the White House Correspondents’ Association.

The other officers:

Vice President, Chuck Lewis of Hearst
Treasurer, Robin Sproul of ABC News
Secretary, Carl Leubsdorf of Dallas Morning News.

The speakers at Saturday’s Winter Dinner were Newark Mayor Cory Booker for the Democrats and Tim Pawlenty for the Republicans. The outgoing president is Susan Page of USA Today. The club was founded in 1885.

Ben Leubsdorf: ‘I Can Confirm She is My Mother’

Ben Leubsdorf is quite the budding reporter.

We know this for a variety of reasons. One of which is that USA Today‘s Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page gave young Leubsdorf (hmmm…could there be a familial relation here?) praise on national TV for an award he received last week from the New Hampshire Press Association. He won for “Best General News Story” among daily newspapers. Leubsdorf covers City Hall for the Concord Monitor.

And just who is Ben Leubsdorf? “He could be a relation,” Page said wryly with a giant smile during the “Shameless Plugs” feature of MSNBC’s “The Daily Rundown” this week.

We called Leubsdorf, 26, in New Hampshire. He was initially sheepish about talking to us. “I can confirm she is my mother,” Ben told FishbowlDC this afternoon. “I’m not sure I want to say anything.” His father is Carl Leubsdorf — his son explained he was Washington Bureau Chief for the Dallas Morning News for “an insane number of years.”

We began with a softball question to calm his nerves and asked about his award-winning piece. The story was about a stretch of road called Death Alley that runs through the three towns of Hopkinton, Henniker and Hillsboro. The story ran on Aug. 1, 201o and involved analyzing accidents and statistics. “I didn’t really think about it,” he said on whether the story would earn him an accolade.

This is Leubsdorf’s second job out of college. The Brown graduate went to work as an editorial assisstant for the AP in Detroit right out of school and moved to Concord in early 2010.

What’s it like having two journalists for parents? “It was a pretty good argument against becoming a journalist,” he deadpanned. “They were pretty neutral on it.” Young Leubsdorf clearly got the gene passed down. “It’s more fun than working,” he said, sounding like a true journalist.

Just before hanging up he had dread in his voice: “Now I have to go tell my editor I’ve done this and make sure I’m not going to get fired.” Asked if we could expect him in Washington one of these days, he said, “I doubt it.”


The FishbowlDC Interview with WHCD Prez David Jackson

Say hello to USA Today‘s David Jackson and the guy responsible for this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner. He’s the president. He’s the one who had to field all the irate phone calls from media organizations that didn’t get the number of tables they wanted. There were 100 more requests for tables than were possible to accommodate. He said he wasn’t cussed at, but assured us it wasn’t pleasant. “We did what we could,” he told me. This year’s entertainment, SNL’s Seth Meyers, was his first choice. (So if Meyers bombs be sure to email, call and tweet.) Jackson, a pleasant curmudgeon of an interview, wouldn’t bother telling me who was on the short list in case Meyers declined. He claimed not to have watched Lifetime’s “William and Kate” movie of the week, though suspiciously he knew exactly what I was talking about. He was also tight-lipped about saying who those angry callers were. Read on.

If you were a carbonated beverage which would you be? Classic Coke.

How often do you Google yourself? Never (I sometimes Yahoo myself to retrieve a story I have written).

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor (or vice versa)? Both answers are unprintable.

Who is your favorite working journalist? I have one, but naming that person would annoy the dozens who finished in a tie for second place.

Do you have a favorite word? Not one, no.

Who would you rather have dinner with – First Lady Michelle Obama or Bestselling Author and former V.P. candidate Sarah Palin? Both at the same time.

What’s the name of your cell phone ring? Vibrate. Vibrate

When did you last cry and why? When David Broder passed away.

What word do you routinely misspell? Judgement.

What swear word do you use most often? The f one, I’m afraid.

What word or phrase do you overuse? I’ll be interested to see …

What TV show do you have to watch? Mad Men

Where do you shop most often for your clothes? Joseph A. Bank

Whom do you prefer for daytime talk, Dr. Phil, Ellen, Oprah, Tyra or the women of The View? With all due respect: None.

Pick one: Leno, Letterman or Conan? Letterman.

Who is your mentor? Carl Leubsdorf

What’s the best advice you ever received in the course of your career? “Just work your ass off” — Dick Schaap told me that when I was in grad school; I don’t want to reveal the year.

Find out why Jackson last lost his temper? It involves FishbowlDC…

Read more

An Unlikely Pair Headline Gridiron’s Winter Dinner

The Gridiron Club’s winter dinner is this Saturday and while the President isn’t expected to attend, some big name guests will be there.

For speakers, Sarah Palin, who’s in Fairfax for a book signing Saturday, will represent the Republican party and Barney Frank will rep the Democrats. The Gridiron’s main event is in the spring so at this weekend’s dinner, there will be a few songs, but no extravagant costumes.

A Gridiron representative tells FBDC the President doesn’t traditionally attend this smaller dinner. Though you’d remember President Obama didn’t attend the Gridiron dinner in March, he was the Democratic speaker at the 2004 winter dinner after his election to the Senate.

“Thanks to Sarah Palin and Barney Frank, it looks like we’ll have the biggest turnout in many years,” Gridiron secretary Carl Leubsdorf told FBDC. They expect about 190 guests.

This will also be the Gridiron’s first online journalist’s debut event- Slate’s John Dickerson was welcomed to the club earlier this month.

Obama Missed, But The Show Must Go On

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger arrives at the Gridiron Club Dinner. Photo for WaPo by Dominic Bracco II

They singed, but the journos didn’t burn.

Even though President Obama was not there to join in the fun, the 124th annual Gridiron Club Dinner went on Saturday without a hitch, some saying Vice President Biden stole the show.

“Talk about the audacity of hope… President Obama does send his greetings, though. He can’t be here tonight- because he’s busy getting ready for Easter. He thinks it’s about him,” Biden opened.

FBDC was the first to report that President Obama would miss the Gridiron Dinner, the first president since Grover Cleveland to skip out.

“We were all very pleased with the evening. The audience was very responsive to the show, especially when Andrea Mitchell, in a bear costume, introduced the Alan Greenspan number and Bob Schieffer, wearing a big “W”, sang “It’s not my problem now” as George W. Bush. While we were disappointed President Obama did not come, the three speakers were all very good and each had some memorable lines,” secretary of the Gridiron Club Carl Leubsdorf tells us.

Speakers included Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, noting the press enthusiasm for candidate Obama, said his absence meant “he’s just not that into you,” and Gov. Jennifer Granholm who said that Sarah Palin “really set back the cause of hot governors. And you know where I’m coming for, Ed Rendell.”

More from Leubsdorf, “We were pleased when Biden stood up for the role of newspapers — until he said the reason was “you can’t house break a puppy on the internet.”

More highlights:

“You know, I never realized just how much power Dick Cheney had until my first day on the job. I walked into my office, and you know how the outgoing president always leaves the incoming president a note in his desk? I opened my drawer and Dick Cheney had left me Barack Obama’s birth certificate.” -Biden

“The other day there were a whole bunch of stories about the President’s hair going gray; the next day there’s a story about a Vice President who’s trying to grow new hair, and then the day after that, the two of us come out in favor of stem cell research. That looked bad.” -More Biden

A Dick Cheney impersonator (in wheelchair and fishing gear) channeling Sinatra and referencing President Bush: “He did it myyy wayyy.”

To the tune of “Some Enchanted Evening,” “Some implants and weaving: Biden’s hair this evening, Hair we can believe in!”

“I come from a state that has the worst unemployment in the nation.. So I know what it’s like to be struggling, as some of you do, as evidenced by those skits up there.” -Granholm

“If I knew what he was saying, we would have been married 12 years earlier,” -Mitchell on economic talk

For complete coverage check out: AP, WaPo, Reliable Source, Tribune’s Clarence Page’s Page, Wash Times and Politico.

Leubsdorf To Retire, Gillman Takes Charge of DMN’s DC Bureau

From the Dallas Morning News (via Romenesko):

    Carl Leubsdorf, the longtime Washington bureau chief of The Dallas Morning News, will retire at the end of this year after a career as a top national affairs writer.

    Mr. Leubsdorf will continue to write his column for The News, as he has since 1981. The column will be published online every week and once every two weeks in the printed newspaper.

    “I’ve had a wonderful run, and I’ll be glad that I can keep my hand in,” he said.

    Todd Gillman, a Washington correspondent with The News, will take over as bureau chief.