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Posts Tagged ‘Kurt Bardella’

‘Top Journalist’ Mike Allen Guesses His Role In Leibovich Book

If nothing else, Politico, along with its Executive Editor Jim VandeHei and Chief White House Correspondent Mike Allen, come off completely self-aware in the latest installment of their “Behind the Curtain” series. That is, VandeHei and Allen know they’re in no small way a part of D.C.’s often narcissistic, cynical culture.

In the piece, Allen refers to himself as one of Washington’s “top journalists” and he and VandeHei speculate that Allen is the focus of “at least a chapter” in NYT Chief National Correspondent Mark Leibovich‘s forthcoming book This Town.

“We won’t love the book, either,” Allen and VandeHei write. “It is clear that POLITICO and [Allen's] Playbook are portrayed as enablers of the culture Leibovich lampoons.”

Aside from Politico‘s “Behind the Curtain” the story being largely about… Read more

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Tighten Up, Issa.

Remember how in February Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) launched “an inquiry” into Kurt Bardella‘s actions and ultimately fired the  spokesman?  Bardella then joined up with Tucker Carlson and the Daily Caller for a brief stint in the role that his Capitol Hill replacement, Becca Glover, had vacated less than 60 days prior.

Now, remember how Issa re-hired his wayward press secretary in August (5 months later)?  Hold that thought.

When news first broke that Bardella was returning to the loving arms of Issa and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, a spokesman told Politico’s Mike Allen:

“Kurt Bardella has accepted a position as a professional staff member with the [House] Oversight Committee. He will work under the committee’s general counsel and is not a spokesman or taking media inquiries.”

I bet you can guess what comes next: Bardella is back to working the press.  This morning the non-spokesman spokesman pitched several reporters on an op-ed penned by Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL).  Adding incest to insult, the piece he peddled was published by his former employer, the Daily Caller:

From: Bardella, Kurt
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 9:33 AM
Subject: FW: Obama’s Postal Bailout: Chairman Ross Reveals $20 billion price tag in the Daily Caller

Fyi…we got new figures from OMB last night which this op-ed is based on…kb

Chairman Ross in The Daily Caller: High Tab on Obama’s Postal Bailout Plan

“The administration has informed the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that under the normal rules for estimating the cost of legislation, commonly known as “budget scoring,” the president’s plan would not reduce the federal deficit by $19 billion over 10 years as advertised by the White House; in fact, it would increase the deficit by $10-20 billion over that same period…

Technically, Issa’s office didn’t lie.  No one claimed that Bardella wouldn’t proactively contact the press – they only said he wouldn’t be taking media inquiries.  Regardless, today’s reunion has ruffled the feathers of some  journalists who were already outraged by Bardella’s re-hire and flimsy job description.

“So unethical. Not only is Bardella emailing press – he’s emailing Daily Caller sh*t around,” said a Fishbowl source who received this morning’s note.  “This is too much,” added the reporter.

UPDATE: Despite two confirmed sources, Issa’s office rejects the notion that Bardella made contact with anyone in the media, claiming the email sourced by FishbowlDC was sent only to Capitol Hill staffers.  To support the case, Frederick Hill, Issa communications director, sent us a screen shot of this morning’s correspondence, complete with BCC email addresses.  Though one could easily debate that a screen shot from a single email doesn’t validate or disprove any of the claims, we’ve included the image anyhow (after the jump).  In response to the allegations, Hill offered the following statement:

“This is a screenshot of the e-mail that Kurt Bardella sent out at 9:33 AM published in your story.  It includes the individuals to whom the e-mail was sent.  None of the individuals to whom it was sent are reporters. While it’s certainly possible some reporters could have received this e-mail – not from Bardella – but as a forward from other individuals, any assertion that a reporter received this e-mail directly from Bardella is false and at odds with the evidence.”

Image after the jump.

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Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

Quotes of the Day — the Earthquake Hits D.C. Edition

One Cool Cat: WaPo‘s Ezra Klein during the Earthquake.

The Observer

“The Capitol is now open. Walking through the Rotunda we are seeing lots of paint chips covering the floor.” — NBC News Senate Producer Libby Leist in a Tuesday tweet.

A journo’s long ride home

“Here comes hell commute on the dc metro… trains and platforms sardined as trains creep along at 15 mph.” — NYT Washington reporter Charlie Savage in a Tuesday afternoon tweet.

At 2:13 p.m. an Anonymous Tipster writes in… 5.6 Earth Quake and most of DC in the Streets

The Media Critic I

“The earthquake seems to have made CNN extra vapid.” Wired.com’s Spencer Ackerman in a Tuesday tweet. We’re just glad Ack didn’t feel any need to dress up like a banana today. That wouldn’t be vapid, but strange in its own right.

The Media Critic II

“And am I the only one who thinks Ira Glass from NPR’s This American Life sounds incredibly bored with himself?” — A self-described “political geek” named Brian Perry.

Priorities….

“Please, remember the real victims: Pundits whose TV segments were bumped for #earthquake coverage.” — Slate‘s Dave Weigel in a Tuesday tweet.

Erickson Razzes Kristol

“That was no earthquake. It was just Bill Kristol learning yet another of his pipe dream candidates is not actually running for President.” — CNN Contributor and Red State’s Erick Erickson in a Tuesday tweet.

Reporter thanks Verizon for functioning

“Verizon, thanks for not crapping out today. AT&T, so weak, so weak. #dcearthquake” — HuffPost’s White House Correspondent Jennifer Bendery in a Tuesday tweet.

And Corn’s point is?

“Okay, back to work. Send me a tweet if there’s another one. Calls still aren’t coming through. #EarthTwake” — Mother Jones’ David Corn in a Tuesday tweet.

Kurtz’s unusual spelling of Gaddafi

“When I walked out, the Khadafy compound was under siege. Now it’s all #earthquake all the time. I guess local trumps everything.” — The Daily Beast’s Washington Bureau Chief Howard Kurtz in a Tuesday tweet. Though it looks unusual, technically Kurtz is not wrong. This is an acceptable way to refer to Muammar Gaddafi, which has a wide variety of spellings out there from G’s to Q’s to Qu to Qa and so forth.

Reporter offers campaign advice

“I know it’s tempting, GOP campaign flacks. But no earthquake-themed Obama jokes. Don’t do it. For the love of good comedy!” — RealClearPolitics’ Scott Conroy in a Tuesday tweet.

Local watering hole addresses the quake

“Yes – we are open. Accepting nominations for quake specials.” — CapLounge in a Tuesday tweet.

Necessary Tweet of the Day

“I complain TOO much, I know. Becoming the travel trauma king. TWO car accidents so far. I was NOT driving. no injuries but poor car.” — ABC7′s Stephen Tschida in a Tuesday message to FishbowlDC. To which we say, we love you Stephen and your dramatic travel habits. Don’t go changing, to try and please us. And enjoy the rest of your vacation.

If you missed the late-night story on The Daily Caller‘s Kurt Bardella returning to Rep. Darrell Issa‘s (R-Calif.) office, read it here.

BREAKING: Fired Aide Returns to Rep. Issa’s Office

We hear that Kurt Bardella is leaving his job as publicist of The Daily Caller and returning to the office of Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), the lawmaker who fired him in early March.

Issa fired Bardella after he leaked reporters’ emails to NYT reporter Mark Leibovich, who is working on a book about insider Washington political culture. Politico leaned on Issa to look into the matter as editors believed emails belonging to their scribes had been compromised. Bardella hemmed and hawed, bizarrely wrote a few op-eds for Politico, and rested in his hometown of San Diego before deciding what to do next. In mid-April he went to work as spokesman for The Daily Caller.

Congratulations to Bardella for getting the politician who fired you to hire you back. But really, who didn’t see this coming?

 

Daily Caller Makes Ballasy Hire

The Daily Caller has hired Nicholas Ballasy of CNS News to be their new Capitol Hill/political correspondent. Up until this point he has been a video journalist. He has interviewed a slew of pols and celebs. The celebs are more interesting — they include Dr. Phil, Whoopi, Eva Longoria, Kelsey Grammer, Stevie Wonder, Harrison Ford and Ashley Judd. You’ll see Ballasy with other celebs like Jon Stewart and The Donald above.

We don’t know how ballsy the hire is just yet. Ballasy begins in early September. He is not considered to be Roll Call-bound Jonathan Strong’s replacement.

“Just an addition to the team,” wrote Daily Caller Spokesman Kurt Bardella in an email. “As you can imagine, with the GOP primary heating up and a lot of intrigue on Capitol Hill, TheDC is adding a lot of new pieces to the puzzle. As we continue to grow and expand our audience, we’ll be looking to further bolster our reporting staff.”

Summer Superlatives Winners, Part III

And the final four…

In a pool of sex machines like The Hill‘s Hugo Gurdon and Daily Caller’s Tucker Carlson it’s tough to imagine anyone winning FishbowlDC’s Sexiest Male of 2011 title by a landslide.  But believe it or not, the boyish good looks of Politico’s Patrick Reis clobbered the competition with over 50% of the popular vote.  Capitol Hill Ken Doll aka Kevin Madden came in a distant second with 16.3% of the vote.  Tucker Carlson, just shy of the silver, trailed Madden by only three votes.

The stress of the spotlight proved too much for Coral Davenport, Amy Harder and Olga Belogolova.  Citing migraines and lack of sleep, NJ’s Energy trio accidentally moved sexy forward when they should have been bringing it back.  The slip bumped them into second place while WUSA-9′s Kristin Fisher took gold and the title of Sexiest Female of 2011 with 38.5% of the vote.  In case you’re wondering, sultry senior seductress Helen Thomas finished third.

The title of Most Underrated went to Ryan Grim of the Huffington Post.  The rock-solid reporter earned 36.61% of the vote, pushing him ahead of Roll Call’s Paul Singer who snagged  a respectable 28.5% of the vote.

Winning by only a hair, Cabbage Patch lookalike and 2011′s Biggest Self-Promoter Matt Mackowiak upset Daily Caller’s Kurt Bardella and stole all the glory with 36.36% of the vote to Bardella’s 34.93%.  Ouch!

Congrats to Reis, Fisher, Grim and Mackowiak!   And there you have the FishbowlDC Class of 2011!

SS Exit Polls Show Three Close Races

Early exit polls from day one of our Summer Superlatives contest indicate only one thing: these races are too close to call tonight.  With three sets of rock-solid competitors and a slew of die-hard supporters, FishbowlDC glory is still anyone’s for the taking.

To spice up the competition, we’ve hidden the real-time results of each race (8pm).  But don’t let that dissuade you from casting a vote or campaigning for your favorite candidate.  Each poll will remain open for 24 hours from the time it went live today and final results will be revealed in a very special post honoring the winners next week. Until then, here’s your 10pm exit poll snapshot.

Best Sense of Humor:  Julie Mason must have spent the evening shaking hands and kissing babies because Team Mason has managed to pull ahead Semnani and Labash.

Julie Mason: 32.06% of the vote.

Neda Semnani: 31.76% of the vote.

Matt Labash: 28.09% of the vote.

Gene Weingarten: 3.39% of the vote.

Biggest Self-Promoter: Mackowiak and Bardella have pimped themselves into one fierce competition.

Matt Mackowiak: 36.91%

Kurt Bardella: 33.77%

Howard Kurtz: 19.6%

Carol Joynt: 9.69%

Best Capitol Hill Press Secretary:  Boehner’s Michael Steel, who began losing his daylong lead to Morris and Elshami this afternoon,  has managed to pull ahead tonight.

Michael Steel: 44.39%

Vince Morris: 28.7%

Nadeam Elshami: 23.53%

Charles Chamberlayne: 3.39%

Summer Superlatives: Biggest Self-Promoter

Photobucket

From talking to tweeting, these media types never miss an opportunity to plug themselves.  But which one’s acts of self-pimping rise above the rest?  The nominees for  Biggest Self-Promoter of 2011 are Daily Caller’s Kurt Bardella, Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz, Carol Joynt of New York Social Diary and Q&A Cafe and Potomac Flack’s Matt Mackowiak.

Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

Quotes of the Day

Juiceboxer Chris Hayes bears a resemblance to Harry Potter

A travel writer chills out in Maine

“Chilly, rainy day in Maine = guilt-free afternoon nap *sigh*” — Travel blogger and Poshbrood site creator Elizabeth Thorp in a weekend Facebook update.

One definition of Hell…

“Hell is not other people. Hell is having to listen to recordings of your own ditzy-sounding voice interviewing other people.” — Slate‘s Noreen Malone in a weekend tweet. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, TNR, and the American Prospect.

The Critic takes swipe at Politico

“In otherwise good piece, why does Politico quote unnamed Dems and Repubs trashing other party on downgrade? Plenty are willing on the record.” — The Daily Beast Washington Bureau Chief Howard Kurtz in a weekend Facebook update.

Bardella’s widely varying movie tastes

“Seeing Harry Potter…” wrote The Daily Caller Spokesman Kurt Bardella in a weekend Facebook update. He also wrote, “Watching The Godfather on AMC’s Mob Week.”

Editor heads to pool hall

“Just made a bet at a biker pool hall. Not sure how I ended up at a biker pool hall, but when in a biker bar, do as the bikers do.” — Reason Magazine Associate Editor Mike Riggs in a weekend tweet.

Angry journo gets something off chest

“Hello, jerk store? I found your missing products. They all took jobs as Metrobus drivers. (@unsuckdcmetro)” — WCP‘s Benjamin Freed in a weekend tweet.

Scribe endures a little weekend exercise

“Even more than hangover durations (shockingly enough), 80 miles on the bike now best way to realize you’re not 23 anymore. #everythinghurts” — Politico‘s Patrick Gavin in a weekend tweet.

Journo writes love note to tourists

“Dear tourists, wite booty shorts + torrential downpours = your jonx on display. Wear underdrawers. Love, DC” – Roll Call‘s John Stanton in a weekend tweet.

He did what?

“Just reorganized my ties. You literally cannot have enough ties.” — NJ “The Hotline’s” Chris Peleo-Lazar in a weekend tweet. This came within a hair’s breadth of making “Unnecessary Tweet of the Day” but…it is Washington, ties are prevalent, especially ugly ones, and this is a first-time offense for Peleo-Lazar.

Washington’s “The Situation” on C-SPAN

“I’ll be on C-SPAN’s ‘Washington Journal’ Monday morning from 8 to 8:30 am. Tune in! Start your day off by looking at my mug ;) ” — Human EventsJason Mattera in a weekend tweet.

 

Scribes Wrestle Tucker Carlson Into Swimming Pool

So much for dispelling that frat house image.

Last Thursday night The Daily Caller (a.k.a Lambda Lambda Lambda) held its summer party at the upscale home of Publisher Neil Patel and things got a little loosey goosey. And for The Daily Caller that’s not saying a lot because life there under the rule of a self-proclaimed Libertarian Editor tends to be sans rules as is. The party boasted a pie eating contest. There was also the inevitable tossing Editor-in-Chief Tucker Carlson into the pool. A party. A pool. An editor. Unruly, rebellious, jokester reporters. This was, in a word: INEVITABLE.

Late Wednesday a Daily Caller contributing reporter named Scoops Delacroix wrote a story on it. We had good intel on who “Scoops” was, so we asked Jeff Winkler, a full-time scribe, about his alleged piece describing the pool party. “Shaggy said it best: It wasn’t me,” he said. “But whoever this Scoops Delacroix character is, he’s got talent. Wouldn’t be surprised if one day he finds his own Deeper Throat.” He added, “That’s my official comment for you amoral and relentlessly vicious reporters.”

An excerpt: During the media mega-conglomerate’s pool party at Publisher Neil Patel’s
palatial mansion, Carlson was surrounded by several long-suffering staff
members and escorted from his berth near the dinner table to an undisclosed
location in the middle of the pool.

Employees who wrestled Carlson in the pool included Winkler (or ThatWinkler as his Twitter account says), Managing Editor Joe Kildea and business employee Brian Danza. This was mere moments after Danza lost a pie eating contest to an intern. Carlson was apparently a good sport about the whole thing — meaning he didn’t injure anyone, fire anyone or drown in the process. He’s also evidently a good swimmer. “Tucker makes Michael Phelps look like an amateur,” said Daily Caller Spokesman Kurt Bardella, who declined to comment on whether Carlson read the story about the party before it got published.

An FBDC reader wondered whether there was really a market for journalists writing about their workplaces in this manner. “Why would I want to read this? Why promote this? Is there a market for this?” But more importantly, what does this do for the publication’s image? (LAMBDA! LAMBDA! LAMBDA!)

The story made the rounds and a splash, so perhaps there’s the answer.

Note: Above left is a wet Tucker post dip taking a photograph with interns.

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