Before the pre-parties at the Washington Hilton billowed out into the hallways and while there was still some order, FishbowlDC caught up with Roll Call Senate reporter David Drucker at the publication’s party.¬†Though invited to the pre-bash, Drucker didn’t have a ticket to the dinner.

We asked who he’d bring if he had his choice of any Hollywood star. He hesitated. Despite being from L.A., he said, he couldn’t think of one. Eventually, chosen Sean Penn, who was, of course, already taken and there with Mother Jones‘ Washington Bureau Chief David Corn. And if he had to choose one person out of D.C. to bring, he gave the most obvious answer: “My wife.”

We also bumped in to Jessica Stone, White House correspondent for China Central Television. Though she’s been a White House correspondent for nearly a year, she too wasn’t invited to the dinner. If she could bring any movie star as her date, she said she’d take George Clooney. And on the D.C. side – Sec. of State Hillary Clinton or Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey. “Colin Powell would be cool, too,” she added.

Overheard at the Roll Call party before the crowd came:

“It’s easy to get drinks.” “That’s the kind of party I like!”

After the line at the bar got long:

“It’s bloody ridiculous! I’m going to go over to National Journal.”

Guests appreciated the strong drinks and bowls of mixed nuts at the few tables in the hotel’s Northwest Room.