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Posts Tagged ‘Nicholas Ballasy’

New ‘Yeas & Nays’ Columnist Abruptly Quits

Something fishy is going on over at Red Alert Politics.

On Sept. 10, just eight days ago, Francesca Chambers, editor of the site, wrote FishbowlDC about Nikki Schwab‘s replacement at Yeas & Nays. She said Nicholas Ballasy would be replacing Schwab, now at U.S. News & World Report.

Strangely, Ballasy, whom Chambers raved about in an enthusiastic memo, was supposed to start Sept. 13. But his work is still nowhere to be found on the site. An introductory blurb announcing his hire (pictured after the jump) is still on the site at the timing of this posting. But…BREAKING NEWS: Ballasy abruptly quit Tuesday after having “issues” with Chambers, FishbowlDC has learned.

“Nick Ballasy is the new Yeas and Nays columnist,” Chambers wrote FishbowlDC on Sept. 10. “He starts full time on Friday.” Only he never started Friday.

Ballasy was apparently traveling with his wife in Europe, hence an alleged delayed start date. His Twitter account and personal website make no mention of his new gig at Red Alert Politics. His Twitter has been on mute since Sept. 6.

Meanwhile, Ballasy takes his angst out on FishbowlDC, writing me today, saying, “I never officially signed on as the ‘Yeas & Nays’ columnist at Red Alert Politics. As usual, Fishbowl’s assertions  about me are inaccurate.” (Hey Ballasy, you may want to inform Red Alert Politics you don’t work there because there appears to be some grand confusion. See the aforementioned announcement after the jump or here.)

Email and phone requests for comment to Chambers have all gone unreturned. Read more

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Red Alert Politics Gets New ‘Serious’ Gossip Writer

Last week we reported that Red Alert Politics “Yeas & Nays” writer Nikki Schwab was moving over to U.S. News & World Report to write the “Washington Whispers” column. Replacing her at “Yeas & Nays: is Nicholas Ballasy, who was fired from The Daily Caller back in March. He was their senior video reporter.

At the time, he told FishbowlDC: “I’m flattered that FishbowlDC and the person who gave you this news tip find me more fascinating than the stories I report. While I enjoyed my time at TheDC, we have parted company. As for my future endeavors, stay tuned. Like any good story, there is more to come.”

Foreshadowing! We love that.

Just a fun fact…when Schwab needed a new co-writer when Yeas & Nays was still at the Washington Examiner, Ballasy applied for the job but didn’t end up taking it. As we reported at the time in 2010, Editor Steve Smith tried to hire Ballasy away from Cybercast News Service but the young reporter apparently said he wanted to continue to do more “serious” journalism (to which some at the Examiner rolled their eyes in response). In January of 2013, he was in talks for the job at “Yeas and Nays” once again, but we hear he didn’t want to take orders from Schwab and the position went to Alicia Cohn. Apparently Ballasy is ready to do less “serious” journalism. He also won’t be taking orders from Schwab. We can hardly wait to see what he does with it.

Daily Caller Fires Another Reporter

Nicholas Ballasy, senior video reporter at The Daily Caller, was fired last week, multiple sources tell FishbowlDC.

Ballasy hasn’t had any stories published at The DC since Thursday. That was also the last day he tweeted and posted anything to Facebook.

When video reporter Michelle Fields was fired from The DC last year, messages sent to her work email address were returned with a notice that said she no longer worked there. That is not the case for Ballasy. He did not return our request for comment via Facebook message nor email.

Update: Ballasy wrote in after this story published: “I’m flattered that FishbowlDC and the person who gave you this news tip find me more fascinating than the stories I report. While I enjoyed my time at TheDC, we have parted company. As for my future endeavors, stay tuned. Like any good story, there is more to come.” Attached to Ballasy’s email was a YouTube video of a past hit he did on FNC.

The reason for Ballasy’s firing is unclear. A look at all of his bylined stories show he was Read more

Love Child: the Fantasy Kids of D.C. Media

The Daily Caller‘s Nicholas Ballasy posted a photo of him and veteran journalist Helen Thomas to his Facebook wall last May. He told us he had spotted Helen at a hotel bar where she offered to buy him drinks.

Mysteriously, the photo vanished and Ballasy declined to tell us more about the counter. We had a modern day Helen Thomas mystery on our hands.

However, in honor of that episode, we wish Ballasy and Thomas a happy Valentine’s Day and present them with their hypothetical love child. We’ve named him Rufus.

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“You can suck my ass.” — E!’s Chelsea Handler to CNN’s Piers Morgan last night after he suggested she wasn’t a very good interviewer and saying, “I can help you.”

Uh oh.

“Unusually high number of critical replies to my column today from folks who haven’t read/understood it. Maybe my fault.” — NationalReviewOnline‘s Jonah Goldberg.

Reporter encounters stinky train

“A @wmata train filled w/ wet sheep would smell less like wet sheep than one filled with drenched people in suits.” — Dave Levinthal, senior political reporter for Center for Public Integrity.

Columnist gives props to Stewart for interviewing skills

“Points to Jon Stewart for being tenacious in his questioning of Al Gore about Al Jazeera.” — Politico‘s Roger Simon.

Editor blames mullet hairdo

“It’s always the people with mullets who break out the checkbook at the grocery store.” — Fox News Contributor and RedState‘s Erick Erickson.

Journo mixes up days of week

“Informed sources tell me that today is in fact Wednesday. Everything else about the last tweet was right though.” — National Journal‘s Scott Bland, who had written, “On Tues, Patrick Murphy appeared in a House Maj PAC video. On Thurs, he sent a fundraising email deploring the Citizens United ruling #FL18.”

Unimportant Q to Ponder: “There’s your friend. You guys speaking these days?” Anonymous journalist to FBDC last night at The New Republic launch party glancing toward Slate‘s Dave Weigel at the other end of the frigid room. More on the party coming up…

Politico Playbook publish time: 6:51 a.m. Morning Oopsy: While Playbook’s author screams loudly in his first item that he was “exclusively” reporting the upcoming Gridiron dinner speakers, the news of Minnesota Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar being among the speakers was reported three weeks ago. Gov. Bobby Jindal as the GOP speaker was new. A special Happy Birthday to Politico‘s media writer Dylan Byers, whose birthday was exclusively reported in Playbook this morning. We’re even giving him these special chocolates.

 Senator brushes off reporter

“Tried to speak to Sen. John Kerry after his farewell speech but he wouldn’t let me finish the question.” — The Daily Caller‘s ambush video reporter Nicholas Ballasy.

Freelancer regrets uncontrollable tweeting… Read more

CNN’s Blitzer, O’Brien Make Cameos in Netflix’s ‘House of Cards’

Though he participated in a well-documented Twitter fight back in 2009 with TWT‘s Emily Miller, it appears actor Kevin Spacey has forgotten who she is.

“I don’t know she is,” he said when asked if we could send Miller his regards at the red carpet premier of Netflix’s “House of Cards” last night at the Newseum. FishbowlDC explained that Miller tipped off the FBI about details surrounding the Jack Abramoff scandal, as portrayed in the film “Casino Jack,” starring Spacey himself. “Oh,” Spacey said, sort of recalling who Miller is. “Hi! Sure. I don’t know what you’re asking me,” he said. Then his handlers moved him along.

“House of Cards” tells the story of Francis Underwood, played by Spacey, a congressional Democrat who wheels and deals his way to the top of the political world. Michael Dobbs, the creator, told FishbowlDC that he wrote the story “as a form of therapy” after having worked as the chief of staff to former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the late ’80s.

The Washington news corps. plays a heavy, fictional role in the show, which is based on the original 1990s BBC series of the same name. James Foley, one of the show’s directors, said while working on story lines he’d ask himself whether it would be believable if he saw it reported on CNN. If not, he’d ask the lead writer for adjustments to the script. He also said actual on-air talent from CNN make cameos in the show, including… Read more

Daily Caller Scribe Scrubs Helen Thomas Photo

Something smells fishy. On his Facebook page last night The Daily Caller‘s typically ballsy Nicholas Ballasy posted a photo of himself posing sweetly with former White House reporter Helen Thomas. The caption said he happened to run into the 92-year-old woman and she offered to buy him drinks.

We know love is blind and sometimes involves strange fetishes. But we thought, isn’t he a little young for her? We put that thought (and others) out of our minds.

FBDC asked Ballasy if he’d tell us more about the encounter (where he saw her, what they canoodled about, whether Thomas smelled like BENGAY, etc.). “She was just being nice by offering because we were talking to her at a hotel bar” Ballasy said.

We asked him to elaborate. “I’ll pass but thanks for the offer,” he said. Then mysteriously, the photograph vanished from his wall.

This is a modern day Helen Thomas mystery.

First we have Thomas offering to buy Ballasy a drink (at a hotel bar). Then he won’t tell us what they discussed. And then the photo disappears. Without making any salacious allegations, we just want to say the coverup is always worse than the affair crime.

We’ve reached out to Ballasy for comment.

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.”

Ballasy’s Ballsy Shower Q Draws Rep. Frank’s Ire

This afternoon Gawker lays out questions posed by CNS News’ Nicholas Ballasy to Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) on Capitol Hill. Frank, who is gay, gets irate when the reporter asks him about repealing DADT and on straight military personnel showering together with homosexuals.

Frank replied, “What do you think happens in gyms all across America? … Do you think the spray makes it catching?…It’s a complete non-issue.” The congressman stepped back in faux shock and asked the reporter a pointed question in return: “Do you think gyms should have separate showers  for gay and straight people?”

Ballasy’s nerve (or something) deflates. He doesn’t answer the question.

The Daily Caller Party: Even a Caveman Can Attend

The cast of characters at Monday night’s Daily Caller second official keg party was nothing short of colorful. For one thing, this wild-haired intern from Reason Magazine, Armin Rosen, showed up and life as we know it will never be the same. For another, even without the original guest of honor, GOP consultant Roger Stone, the celebration of new hire Mary Katharine Ham, turned out a jammed hallway full of journalists and guests and a keg sponsored by Miller-Coors. Stone had to be in New York to coach gubernatorial hopeful Carl Paladino. “This is how it should be,” remarked Daily Caller V.P. of Sales Alex Treadway, raving that Ham is sure to be a publication star.

The Wild Haired intern, meanwhile, was opening up. “Please don’t ruin my career,” Rosen repeatedly begged FishbowlDC throughout an evening that felt like something between a summer camp outing, a blog convention and a trip to the circus. Before fleeing the party, the intern’s boss, Matt Welch, Reason‘s Editor-in-Chief, asked me to babysit Wild Hair and make sure he didn’t do anything stupid. (Note to Editors: We’ll be glad to babysit your reporters, but a) really? b) it’s questionable FBDC policy, and c) we wouldn’t dream of stopping a journalist from partaking in any form of stupid activity he or she so desires.)

Soon enough, the intern’s clear Doppelganger emerged: the Geico caveman. He explained the simplicity of his hair upkeep. “It’s easy, I don’t comb it – ever,” he said. “All you have to do is get into a sublime state of not caring and you get this hair.”

Party banter ranged from Washington’s uptight nature and the Brett Favre sexting scandal to House GOP leaders and Twitter follower counts. “People in Washington are boring as f—k,” remarked Daily Caller’s Mike Riggs. And yet, those here could hardly be considered boring – Less Government’s Seton Motley, when Wild Hair was pointed out, pulled out a shirtless picture of himself (perhaps from the 80s) with wavy blondish hair cascading to his waist.

Riggs swore he wasn’t “on anything” Monday night except beer. We believed him (mostly) until he knelt down on one knee and bestowed solemn praise to another partygoer, The Exiled’s Mark Ames, while chanting, “Oh my f—king God. Oh my f—king God.” Washington City Paper’s Moe Tkacik, who came to the party with Ames, suggested that some in Washington might have Asperberger’s Syndrome. She’s a recent transplant to Washington and hire to WCP. (If you haven’t seen her work, it’s a must).

Others in the crowd: Daily Caller spokeswoman Becca Glover Watkins, Publisher Neil Patel, Editor-in-Chief Tucker Carlson, the Washington Examiner’s J.P. Freire, The Hill’s Christina Wilkie and Wonkette’s Elizabeth Glover. Also from Wonkette was the newly hired Morning Editor, Riley Waggaman, who looks like something out of a Harry Potter movie with blond hair, glasses and a bright turquoise button-down. Already partied and gone were The Weekly Standard’s John McCormack and TWT’s Eli Lake. McCormack, referring to Riggs’s recent shrooming escapade, tweeted about the party, saying he “felt a little funny after eating some Halloween candy but a purple monkey just flew in the room and told me candy is not laced.”

Many Daily Caller reporters were on hand to kick the keg. The included Alex Pappas, Jeff Winkler, Jonathan Strong, Chris Moody, Matthew Boyle, a part-timer, and a mystery staffer from a Democratic lawmaker’s office who didn’t want to be identified. (An office rule forbids office staffers from being Google-able alongside the boss’s name.) More in the crowd: TWT’s Ben Birnbaum, CNS’s Nicholas Ballasy, The Atlantic’s Chris Good and Daily Caller’s new blog consultant Klaus Marre.

It’s time to check on Wild Hair

Read more