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Posts Tagged ‘Paul Kane’

Journos Win NJ’s Big Trivia Night

Last night National Journal‘s “The Hotline” hosted its annual Political Pursuit trivia contest in which members of Congress, journalists and consultants comprise teams and show their smarts for the big win.

“You can’t study for this,” said SKDknickerbocker’s Doug Thornell, who played on the Hotline Insiders team. “I actually think I’m really good at [trivia].” His brother showed up, as did his parents, who assured FishbowlDC that he was a very smart boy growing up. (See the Thornell fam pictured below.)

In a stunning victory, Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), clearly the most impressive player in the room last night, and his team came in second place. The journalists, who in the first four rounds, didn’t seem like they were faring so well, shot back up to win. They included WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza, who made a funny Weiner joke, and Paul Kane, The Cook Report’s Amy Walter, Roll Call‘s Shira Toeplitz, and NYT‘s Carl Hulse.

Which member of Congress had a unit of measure named after him? Cillizza’s guess: former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.). The room broke into hysterics. Another hard question: How many calories does a fried stick of butter contain? This was what Mitt Romney ate during the campaign at a fair. The answer shocked everyone: It’s only 400 calories.

All the journalists walked home with Genius Trophies after earning an astounding 285 points. The Hotline Insiders team wasn’t far behind with 260, and the Members Only team came in third with 173 points.

The Hotline’s Editor-in-Chief Reid Wilson played Alex Trebek along with Quinn McCord, who wrote the evening’s incredibly tough questions. Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

Reflection on WHCD’s past

“You know you are old if you can remember when the White House Correspondents Dinner was just a dinner in a hotel basement.” — WaPo‘s Karen Tumulty.

A polite and impolite view of Politico‘s Leibo piece

“Not a reflexive @politico hater by any means but the Allen/Vandehei piece on @MarkLeibovich sure bears out his thesis of DC’s awfulness.” — The Hill‘s Associate Editor Niall Stanage. Then there’s Michael Cohen, a columnist for The Guardian, who wasn’t so kind. He wrote, “Dear Washington DC: This article is kind of the reason people don’t like you.” Read the Politico piece here.

Number of Weiner jokes made National Journal‘s Political Pursuit game last night at the Newseum: At least 2. One was made by an unknown member of the audience; the other by WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza, who was on the winning team of journliasts that included WaPo‘s Paul Kane, NYT‘s Carl Hulse, Roll Call‘s Shira Toeplitz and The Cook Report’s Amy Walter. More on the event later…

And now a note from our Spiritual Counselor Sophia Nelson, of theGrio.com and Essence: “We are spiritual beings having an earthly experience. Protect your spirit. Feed your spirit. Guard your spirit. Bless your spirit.”

If you can’t beat ‘em, leave the country

“Out of the city and country for the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Totally unplanned. Tears of unbridled joy. Alhamdullilah.” — Washington freelancer Sam Knight, who writes for Salon and Washington Monthly.

NPR has rep to uphold

“*sigh* If I had a nickel for every time I’ve thought this… ” –NPR’s Audie Cornish, host of “All Things Considered” in response to this: “@GeeDee215: okay. i’mma stop. This is NPR, etc.”

Yeah, riiiight: “It’s definitely smaller this year.” — SKDknickerbocker’s Doug Thornell on this year’s Garden Brunch hosted by Tammy Haddad, SKD’s Hilary Rosen and others.

AnonymASS Tipster of the Week: “Hey Peter Ogburn. While you humiliate some person who no one knows, same question can be asked of you: who the hell are you? Or who should care about the mostly puerile things you write? Advice? Find something else to do with your life.” Dear ASS: He is Peter Ogburn, THAT’s who. Who are you? Oh, right, the person who is too cowardly to attach your name to your note.

Journo Love

“Follow by the far the funniest @politico: @LucyConstance.” — Politico‘s Alexander Burns.

And finally, a morning Bible lesson from FNC’s Brit Hume‘s wife, Kim Hume: “A sound heart is life to the body, But envy is rottenness to the bones. Proverbs 14:30 (NKJV)”

Politico Playbook Puts WaPo’s Ass on Blast

In Politico Playbook today, Chief White House Correspondent Mike Allen took stabs at what he clearly viewed to be an aging and achingly familiar lede in WaPo‘s story regarding “fiscal cliff” negotiations.

From Playbook:

SOUND FAMILIAR? Lead sentence of lead story of today’s WashPost: “The contours of a deal to avert the year-end ‘fiscal cliff’ are becoming increasingly clear.”

–FLASHBACK – POLITICO lead story, Nov. 29: “[T]he contours of a deal – including the size of tax hikes and spending cuts it will most likely contain – are starting to take shape.”

The stories in question are this one by Allen and Executive Editor Jim VandeHei and this one by WaPo‘s Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane. Both pieces address the inner workings of Congress on a deal to avoid automatic tax increases and spending cuts. (The awkward factor here is medium high: VandeHei and Kane both previously worked at Roll Call. Notes Kane: “We are good friends as our Mike and I.”)

Asked about the similarity of language in both stories, FishbowlDC received a response from Kane that could only be described as touchy… Read more

Sen. Baucus is Tying Knot: Who Wrote it Best?

It’s wedding bells for Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and his former aide, Melodee Hanes, this weekend and Washington’s gossip writers took to the news in a variety of vanilla ways. As it often happens, best to read several items on the same topic to get all the basics.

WaPo‘s The Reliable Source: June 30, 9 p.m. Per usual, later than the rest, but at least they got an interesting tidbit from WaPo political reporter Paul Kane who spoke directly with the senator about the honeymoon being off because Sen. Maj. Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) canceled the recess.

Roll Call‘s HOH: June 30, 4:52 p.m. This item wins the prize. Not only did they run the story the story first, but we learn that the wedding will be a low-key “boots and jeans” kind of affair. We also find out the couple will get over the fact that they’re Reid is destroying their honeymoon by hiking in in August in Glacier National Park. Also included here is the special added detail about the senator’s brother.

Politico CLICK: June 30, 7:20 p.m. This item focuses on the scrutiny of the couple’s romance when Baucus nominated his girlfriend for U.S. Attorney. The post is missing the flair and description of the others. It’s also not clear that the writer spoke to anyone about it considering it starts out saying “it looks like” they’re getting married. This presents doubt when there is none, which we learn in the next graph. They do have news and a photograph of the couple recently dancing on the White House lawn.

The First Toast

From L to R: Budding Fashion Reporters Jocelyn Luddy and Reilly Folsom.

WHCA President David Jackson (USA Today) and NYT’s Mark Leibovich

What’s a party with Washington’s media elite without bourbon, beer, wine, Food Truck quality mac ‘n cheese and 11-year-old fashionistas to put guests in the hot seat?

The view from the American Gas Association offered guests a perfect shot of the Capitol. The crowd at last night’s WHCD party thrown by QGA and FD blended White House correspondents like CNN’s Ed Henry, Ebony‘s Kevin Chappell, The Hill‘s Sam Youngman and USA Today‘s David Jackson , USA Radio Network’s Connie Lawn, and Politico’s Julie Mason with Fortune‘s Tory Newmyer, Politico‘s Amie Parnes, RealClearPoliticsErin McPike, Roll Call‘s John Stanton and NYT‘s Carl Hulse. Let’s just get one thing straight: NYT‘s Mark Leibovich has heard all the “bcc” jokes out there. And yours will not be special. Welcome to the first party leading into WHCD weekend.

The food was catered by D.C. food trucks of lore CapMac and Sauca and guests were dying over the mac ‘n cheese. Dessert was Good Humor ice cream bars from a cart complete with an umbrella. One partygoer remarked that the party could have been held on an outside corner. But a party outside wouldn’t have allowed for the two-station open bar, where bartenders made unsolicited repeat drinks for many of the journos. One guest called one of the bartenders “the motherf*cking man.”

Other guests in the crowd: QGA’s Jack Quinn and wife, Susanna, FD’s Jackson Dunn, Stacey Bowlin, Jared Allen and Mary Kathryn Cover, Terry McAuliffe, QGA and FBDC’s Matt DornicWaPo‘s Amy Argetsinger, SELF’s Marc Adelman, Pamela Sorensen of Pamela’s Punch, The Hill‘s Christina Wilkie and Emily Goodin, CNN Publicist Edie Emery and Megan Grant and TWT’s Emily Miller.

Miller said WHCD week makes her feel like an awkward teenager. “It brings out the worst 16-year-old in me,” Miller said, explaining that her worries go like this: ‘”Why wasn’t I invited to that party?’ or ‘Was I too fat for this dress?’” She adds, “At least I was invited to the pre-pre-pre-pre-pre party.”

The fashionistas at the party were Jocelyn Luddy (daughter to Jack and Susanna) and her friend, Reilly Folsom, who were testing out their journalistic skills by interviewing female party guests and Adelman. They’re trying out for a fashion blog out of San Fran called StyleBistro.com. They asked their subjects questions about what uniform they’d want for work if they had to have one and what styles they missed and didn’t.

The girls in flowered skirts and white T-shirts weren’t amateurs. They had practiced their questions for days. They cajoled by saying funny things like, “Come on, I want all the deets.” As the pair interviewed USA Today‘s Jackie Kucinich, the whole scene became so focused that photographers like Roll Call‘s Tom Williams began snapping pictures of the interview. Afterwards, Kucinich and Argetsinger (also interviewed by the girls) second-guessed their answers that involved Pappagallo purses and culottes.

Alec Jacob contributed to this report.

More pictures and guests after the jump…

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“MTP” Fetes New Press Rep

MTP's Adam Verdugo, Betsy Fischer and Erika Masonhall c/o WHCInsider

A group of Washington’s journos gathered for cordials and cupcakes at the home of “Meet the Press” (MTP) E.P. Betsy Fischer last night.  The cocktail party was held to welcome Erika Masonhall to the MTP team.  Formerly press secretary for Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), Masonhall is now the press representative for NBC’s “Nightly News” and “Meet the Press.”

In addition to network bigwigs like Fischer, Washington Bureau Chief Antoine Sanfuentes, David Gregory and NBC News President Steve Capus, some of the District’s top reporters were in the house to raise a glass to MTP’s press rep.  Jeff Zeleny from the New York Times, soon-to-be USA Today reporter Jackie Kucinich, WaPo‘s Paul Kane, Tammy Haddad, Roll Call‘s Jessica Brady and Politico‘s Mike Allen, Jonathan Martin, Manu Raju, and Keach Hagey all found their way out to Fischer’s Falls Church, Va. maison.

*Unfortunately for FishbowlDC, last night we learned the hard way that you should start a car more than once every three months to prevent its battery from dying.  R.I.P. battery and congrats Erika!

For more photos and info from the Masonhall fete, check out WHCInsider here.

Mike Allen, David Gregory and Antoine Sanfuentes c/o WHCInsider

Name That Journo: Revealed

The Washington D.C. journo featured in today’s photograph is WaPo‘s Paul Kane. Largely the FishbowlDC audience got it right –Rachel Gantz, Editor for Oil Price Information Service, wrote it with the correct answer first, followed by Prism PR’s Stuart Roy, Comcast’s VP for Government Communications Sena Fitzmaurice and Ianthe Zabel, of the Investment Company Institute, who wrote, “That’s easy – pic is Paul Kane of the WaPo.  As cute then as he is today!”

Only AP‘s Jim Belmont wrote in to say he thought the picture was MSNBC’s Capitol Hill Correspondent Luke Russert.

Kane had no comment on the picture, the freckles, or what grade he was in at the time the picture was taken.

Shuffle in National Politics Team at WaPo

WaPo brass announced a slew of beat changes and a few open positions for their National team today.  The shuffle is well summarized in the memo below: 

“We are pleased to announce several staff moves that will enhance our coverage of Congress and the White House as we head into the postelection future.

Shailagh Murray, one of this town’s keenest observers of the legislative process, will remain anchored on the Hill but take on a new role that focuses more broadly on the political dynamic between the White House and Congress. She will pay special attention to the relationship between Democrats and the president as their party regroups for 2012. Shailagh’s sophisticated understanding of politics and policy will help us chart how a divided government confronts the great economic challenges that are sure to be themes of the next campaign.

Paul Kane, who has an encyclopedic knowledge of Congress and its members, will lead our coverage of the new GOP House majority. Paul is one of the most respected correspondents on Capitol Hill. And his deep experience and sourcing will help us aggressively and authoritatively chronicle the biggest congressional power shift since 1948.

Phil Rucker, one of our most versatile writers, will bring his energy and eye to the Capitol, capturing the spectacles, dramas and small tales that animate Congress. Whether covering the news on the Senate floor or illuminating the hallway chit-chat, he will help bring to life the institution and its characters.

David Fahrenthold, a graceful writer known for decoding complex subjects, will leave the environmental beat for the challenge of making Congress accessible. He will help explain the institution’s rules, rhythms, people and legislation—whether drawing portraits or distilling complicated policy debates.

Felicia Sonmez, one of our sparkling new talents, will anchor a congressional blog aimed at breaking news and housing all that is hot and relevant in Congress. She and fellow Deputy Fix Aaron Blake had splendid runs as campaign bloggers under The Fix banner. This new blog, to which others will contribute, will provide quick, fun, edgy takes that drive the Capitol Hill conversation. PostPolitics Managing Editor Chris Cillizza will post a separate note seeking a successor to Felicia.

On the White House beat, Perry Bacon will take on a new role: following the president. He will be the reporter who most closely tracks the president’s movements, traveling with him often and mining the daily schedule for newsy developments, features, analyses and surprises. Perry is an astute analyst of the political landscape and will bring a fresh voice to the second phase of the Obama presidency.

His arrival will create more room for ace correspondents Scott Wilson and Anne Kornblut to drill deeper into White House decisionmaking and presidential relationships, to unearth news and mount significant enterprise that will help readers better understand the man in the Oval Office.

We are adding to our White House team a fourth player whose charge will also be to discover the undiscovered. There will be a separate posting for that assignment. ”

Kevin      Marilyn     Wes     Steven

Journos: Will They Sleep Tonight?

We posed a question to a mass of journalists, many covering the midterms, and most everyone obliged. One reporter, who will remain genderless, wished to be anonymous because of fear of his or her PR department. We thank everyone for participating, especially Mr. Weigel from Slate – no FishbowlDC roundup would be complete without him. And then Politico‘s Mike Allen, who finally sheds light on that perennial ‘Does he sleep?’ question. But there is no pecking order here. You’re all our favorites (except when we fight with you).

Enjoy.

THE QUESTION: Will you sleep tonight and how will you stay awake and alert?

Politico‘s Mike Allen: Vandy has promised I can sleep the first three years when I’m dead.

The Hill‘s Managing Editor Bob Cusack: I hope to. I have a couple television interviews at 1 am and 7 am so the plan is to catch a power nap in between. But trying to fall asleep on Election night is like trying to fall asleep as a kid on Christmas Eve: very hard.

The Daily Caller‘s Editor-in-Chief Tucker Carlson: Of course not; Nicorette.

FNC’s Greta Van Susteren: Coffee and more coffee.

HuffPost‘s Editor-in-Chief Arianna Huffington: Even when I was a little girl in Greece, and had no idea who any of the American candidates were, I’d refuse to go to bed until the last vote was counted.  This year will be no different, which means I’ll probably be up until Veteran’s Day.  I’ll stay awake by practicing saying “Speaker Boehner,” “Senator Angle,” “Senator Rubio,” and “Senator Paul” with a Greek accent.

Slate‘s Dave Weigel: I’m in Nevada, so I’m three hours behind the east coast, allowing me to stay up into the witching hours with no problems. Next election: Fiji.

The Hill‘s White House correspondent Sam Youngman: I plan on sleeping like a NyQuil-drunk baby. I’m far more geeked up for POTUS’s presser tomorrow than tonight’s results. That said, the junkie in me will probably be glued to the TV late into the night with nothing but my nerdiness to keep me awake.

Roll Call‘s John McArdle: I brought my sleeping bag and some other camping gear in case I get a chance to grab a bit of sleep. Whether that will actually happen is still up in the air. If I start to get tired I’ve got this cued up on my computer. Watch here. (The color of the sleeping bags? “One I brought for myself is grey and orange. Brought a red one for one of my co-workers. Both from REI.”)

The Atlantic‘s Joshua Green: Yes, I intend to sleep tonight–and prefer to do so the old-fashioned way, not awake and alert, but soundly, with Ambien CR and lots of pillows.

TWT‘s Eli Lake: I am in New Orleans for a conference on geospatial intelligence. I will sleep well with the knowledge that many government agencies and defense contractors are watching.

FamousDC: Some of us are already in bed, the rest are armed with RedBull and champagne.

HuffPost‘s Ryan Grim: I will deviate from my norm and drink light beer. It’s a necessary sacrifice I make for readers.

C-SPAN’s Steve Scully: This is the night we LIVE for.  It’s a Political High, combined with a few
Triple shot venti lattes from Starbucks.

Politico‘s John Harris: I will intend to get at least a few hours sleep but past experience suggests there’s a good chance I won’t be successful. Tonight will be no problem even if I don’t. Ancient experience in college and more recent experience with three kids makes it not that hard for me to go on short sleep rations. But by Wednesday evening I’ll be a wreck.

The Daily Caller‘s Mike Riggs: Funny you should ask. I just completed the final task in my election night pre-game game plan. First, I metro’d home, then I smoked a spliff, took off all my clothes, and did three sets of jumping jacks in front of a full-length mirror. I’m putting myself down for a nap now. Around 11 p.m., I’ll head back to the office and carry on straight through to lunch tomorrow. Cigarettes, diet red bull, and a fear of sped-up dreams will keep me sharp. (Note to readers: A spliff for the uninformed is half weed, have cigarette tobacco, rolled up like a joint.)

Yahoo! News’s Michael Calderone: I’m hoping to get to sleep shortly before the Sun comes up, but we’ll see how things play out. I’m at Yahoo’s election headquarters in New York where coffee and soda are plentiful, so I think that’ll help with staying awake. Also, there’s a Foosball table nearby that may prove crucial for regaining concentration (and preventing insanity) in the early morning hours.

TBD Editor Erik Wemple: Well, primary night was a 2:30 a.m. proposition. I am hoping that general election night works harder and keeps us here much later. There’s nothing quite as fun as updating the site into the wee hours. For alertness, I rely on clean living and push-ups. Perhaps a little caffeine but not much.

The Washington Examiner‘s Julie Mason: I am so hopped up on cold medicine it’s hilarious. My editor is going to have to chug NyQuil to even make sense out of the incoherent mess I will be filing shortly. And then I plan to sleep like the dead.

WaPo‘s Paul Kane: I hope to be in bed around 3 am. I’ve got the House-race beat, so the yes-no on majority status should be known early enough and the rest is just updating the numbers. Caribou Coffee — unofficial sponsor of the late-afternoon break for all Wash Post employees — is doing its job. In ’08 I was up till at least 5 am watching the Coleman-Franken race get closer and closer and closer.

FishbowlDC and QGA’s Matt Dornic: Yes, I will sleep but for journos hoping to go all night, look no further than the supermodel 3C diet- cocaine, cigs and celery.  It’s a great way to stay up and kill a few lbs.

Politico‘s Patrick Gavin: Sleep? Sleep?!? Anyone who’s worked around puppy-kicking porn producers knows that sleep is but an unattainable dream…

NYT‘s Brian Stelter: I plan to sleep between 4 and 5am. Coffee, then sugar-free Red Bull, then then coffee, then sugar-free Red Bull.

MSNBC and NBC Producer Andy Gross: I’m playing the role of “co-pilot” for Nightly News in DC tonight…we also call it “Dr. Downstairs” because I will oversee the production process in our video editing area, which happens to be downstairs here at NBC.  Once we are clear and network Specials takes over the election night coverage, I should be heading home to Clarendon by 9:30pm.  I will however, go out for a drink and watch the returns come in.

Anonymous reporter: I’m forcing myself to take a power nap at midnight and then wake up around 3:45 a.m., drink a  sugar free Red Bull/ diet Sprite combo and do some speed reading of the latest results.

Roll Call‘s Christina Bellantoni: I am not counting on sleep tonight, but packed an overnight bag just in case, and there’s plenty of room in our newsroom to curl up in a corner with a blanket.  I’m on the early shift tomorrow so if I am able to get home for a few hours, I have to be back here at 7:30 a.m.

Al Jazeera‘s Avi Lewis: A nice Argentinean maté if things get desperate. But generally – actually, genetically – adrenaline kicks in on election night, and I never have any problem staying up. Getting to sleep, well, that’s another story. At a certain point in the evening, you just have to realize that you cannot affect the results by watching every minute of the coverage! If you can remember that and drag yourself to bed, you can read all about it as soon as you wake up.

NJ The Hotline’s Amanda Munoz-Temple: A: What is sleep? B: staying awake tonight by consuming as much caffeine as my body will allow me. On top of candy, diet coke, chips… Basically the diet of a 13 year old, to keep me happy and sane.

The Takeaway’s Capitol Hill radio reporter Todd Zwillich: Three hours if I’m lucky. I’ll stay awake by hosting The Takeaway’s live online election coverage at www.thetakeaway.org with with guests and analysts from all around the country, including Jay Newton Small and Studio 360′s Kurt Andersen. Otherwise I’ll exist on coffee and Diet Dr. Pepper. I may dip into my stash of Four Loko as the night goes on. Just sent the intern out for Four Loko by the way.

Human Events Editor Jason Mattera: No, I’m not sleeping tonight. I’ll stay up thanks to four locos, anything with the nickname liquid cocaine will keep me wired. Then again, its other nickname is “blackout in a can” so I may not remember the midterm election even took place.”

Human Events Senior Editor Emily Miller: Mattera needs his locos, but I’ll be wide awake on adrenaline waiting to see Harry Reid weeping like a little girl and Nancy Pelosi sneaking her gavel past Capitol Police in the dead of night.

HuffPost‘s Sam Stein: Only time will tell.

The Daily Caller‘s Executive Editor Megan Mulligan: The real question is: Am I awake now? I’m pinching myself to make sure I didn’t dream this whole thing up. When Christine O’Donnell, Jimmy McMillan and Alvin Greene go down, I’ll rest.

The Daily Caller‘s Jonathan Strong: I do plan to sleep tonight, though not much. My wife helpfully gave me a “5-hour Energy” drink to take to work this morning, so that should help.

CBS News’s Nancy Cordes: Sleep is for the weak…we wrap up our live coverage at 2 a.m. and then I start preparing for the Early Show at 7 a.m. They’ll have to prop open my eyeballs for tomorrow night’s Evening News.

Roll Call‘s Andrew Satter: Will I sleep? Depends on how much grief Final Cut Pro wants to give me tonight (2008 wasn’t pretty). How will I stay awake and alert? Well I don’t drink coffee or much caffeine, but I did live in New Orleans which is pretty much like getting a Master’s in Watching the Sun Rise.

The Disenchanted Journo‘s Christian Bourge: My plans are to start drinking around 4:30pm then go to bed early before waking to watch who is on television pontificating around 2 AM. By then the needed twists to the already established Election Day narrative should be figured out. I can then write the real story Wednesday and talk about it on my show, The Capitol Hill Blues. Either that or I will end up arrested by Joe Miller’s campaign staff.

CBS News’s Christine Delargy: “We’ll be on the web practically all night with special coverage so I’ve conditioned by actually not going to a cocktail party with Matt Dornic and Kiki Ryan last night.”

WhiteHouseDossier.com‘s Keith Koffler: I will not be going to sleep tonight. I’ve trained my border collie sit by the TV and bark every time he hears the words, “we are now projecting.”

HuffPost‘s Eliot Nelson: I’m just high on the peaceful transition of power.

Politico‘s Dave Catanese: I imagine I’ll sleep at some point. Probably sometime after the cable chatter goes dark. I’m addicted to the blabber. Like potato chips after a night out, can’t put the bag down. But with all the wacky reports out of Alaska, it’s gonna be hard for me to stop reclicking on the returns from the Last Frontier. I will power through on pure adrenaline. This is it right? I can sleep Saturday, oh wait, forgot about Alaska.

NYP Page Six Reporter Tara Palmeri: I’m going to Cuomo’s election party but staying up isn’t that hard for someone who has to be out every night for their job.

Politico‘s Ben Smith: Hmm. Yes, surely, the Courtyard Rosslyn awaits. And they’ve actually added extra oxygen to the air here at POLITICO, so it won’t be hard.


NJ Parties Like the Pink Panther

It was Night 4 of NJ‘s flurry of launch parties at the rented space on E St. Thursday night was thought to be the mother of parties so far. The room was packed. So much so, that partygoers periodically slipped out into the cool air when they couldn’t take the crowding. Or, when they hoped to flee the towering wine-drinking man in blue linen who pawed some female guests (he wasn’t with NJ and appeared to be a straggler who wandered in off the street. At least one woman pushed him away).

Guests enjoyed cocktails, fancy hors d’oeuvres and the sounds of a live jazz band. They complained of too few bathrooms and a sweltering indoor temperature.

The dimly-lit warehouse space was enveloped in red velvet curtains. NJ Daily Editor Jason Dick loosely bragged that he had attended party after party and wasn’t tiring of it.”This is how we roll,” he joked. “I take my cues for living from the old Pink Panther movies with the martinis.

“It’s a little bit more fun than I anticipated,” he said, referring to the new web site launch and subsequent parties. “We started this back in February and it was hard to see where it was going. We’re all working as hard as we ever have. There’s a lot more steam in our strides.”

NJ brass did their best to squash talk of a NJ-Politico rivalry. But partygoers chattered about it. “For me, Politico is a start, but I’m not going to get a lot of substance out of it,” said a guest. Others felt the party logo looked too much like Politico. Dick dismissed the so-called feud, saying there much less animosity and more friendship than people know. “I have a lot more friends than enemies at Politico,” he said. He laughed, saying people had tweeted earlier in the week about whether NJ and Politico were going to “meet in a parking lot with knives and guns.”

Fournier said he was “excited” about the launch but just as excited to make it an early night and get home to his wife and child.

Many a journo turned up. Find out who and see more pictures after the jump…

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