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Posts Tagged ‘Paul Singer’

The FishbowlDC Interview With Advice Columnist Rebecca Gale

 

Say hello to CQ Roll Call‘s on call advice blogger Rebecca Gale. She writes the “Hill Navigator” advice column for those who want to better understand the ins and outs of Capitol Hill. As a former press secretary to the likes of Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WVa.), Chris Carney (D-Pa.), Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) and several years now at CQ Roll Call, she’s intimately acquainted with her subject matter. The highly educated Gale went to undergrad at Miami of Ohio University and Johns Hopkins for grad school.  Royal baby news aside, one other piece of news about Gale: She’s expecting her first child, a boy, in mid-August. Already some nine months into her pregnancy, she will soon depart for maternity leave. Very soon, in fact. So let’s get this interview started.

If you were a carbonated beverage, which would you be? Perrier. In a glass bottle, not plastic.

How often do you Google yourself? Lately not often. I’m more likely to google “Hill Navigator”

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor/boss (or vice versa)? I once told a book editor that something was “your problem, not mine” and he calmly responded by saying it was my name on the cover, so I’d better fix it.

You have an intriguing name. What is the story behind it? My parents like biblical names. And Gale is easy to spell. Not sure if that qualifies as intriguing, but it works for me. Coming up with a good name is much harder than it seems.

Who is your favorite working journalist and why? There are some fantastic Roll Call alums out there–NPR’s Scott Montgomery and USA Today’s Paul Singer are two of my favorites.

Do you have a favorite word? Unlikely.

Who would you rather have dinner with – CNN’s Kate Bolduan, CNN’s Chris Cuomo or CNN’s Michaela Perera? Tell us why. Whomever has better restaurant taste–I don’t follow CNN closely enough to discern who’d be the better conversationalist.

We understand you’re expecting a baby. With your husband. But the Earth’s human population is dying out and you must save it by having another child after this one’s delivered. You will spend a romantic evening with “Morning Joe” regular Harold Ford Jr., Anthony Weiner or Eliot Spitzer. Who will it be and why? (None is not an option.) Weiner. All he’d want to do is look at pictures.

What swear word do you use most often? Damn.

You’ve just been told the big news: You get to have your own Sunday morning talk show. Who will be on your roundtable? (Pick four journalists or pundits types.) I’d include someone who can speak to the “real” issues in Washington, D.C.–the city–not just the political entity. Washington Post “Lunchline” author Clinton Yates comes to mind, as does Roll Call “After Dark” editor Jason Dick. Also Armando Trull from WAMU who is always reporting live from esoteric beltway locations. I’d make sure to include a Member of Congress who is not in the usual roundup of talk show suspects–they’d be more likely to say something interesting. The ones laden with talking points and platitudes say the same things over again. And one of my first guests would be my former boss, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee.

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Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day — State of the Union-Fugitive Edition

SOTU quotes that are fit for a Fishbowl: “I know the human being and fish can coexist peacefully.” — brought to our attention by HuffPost‘s Sam Stein‘s Twitter feed. It’s an old quote from former President George W. Bush. And this: “At least there’s no smoked fish joke in this one.” — Mother JonesNick Baumann.

“The outside of the Dome on SOTU night.” Roll Call‘s Meredith Shiner with accompanying photograph.

Shut up SOTU clappers, journo wants his Zzzz’s

“Dear applauders: Please stop. I have a bedtime.” — WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza.

Importantish Q to Ponder: “So… Does Senator Menendez shake President Obama’s hand as he walks in? Awkward. #SOTU” — NRSC Strategist Brad Dayspring.

Important Q to Ponder: “So does CNN break away from the burning house to do the State of the Union.” — TPM‘s Josh Marshall.

Important Q to Ponder III: “What’s the over/under on the number of Nicorette patches John Boehner has plastered all over himself right now?” — Times of London‘s Matt Spence.

THE SPEAKER AND THE LOUDMOUTH: “Luke Russert shakes Speaker Boehner’s hand as he walks to the chamber for SOTU.” — NBC House of Representatives Producer Frank Thorp. Boehner affectionately (we think) refers to Russert as the “loudmouth.”

Rothenberg crushes the spirit of political reporters

“Political reporters always incredibly excited by SOTU. Real people not so much.” — Stu Rothenberg, who writes a column for Roll Call, a publication full of political reporters. And then, oddly, he writes, “My first SOTU inside the chamber? 1970 when I was Colby College intern in Ed Muskie’s office. AA gave me ticket.” Um, hey Stu, do real people give a sh-t about this?

Speaking of excitement…

“The hallway outside Sen. Durbin’s office smells overwhelmingly of barbecue.” — Roll Call‘s Shiner of the Illinois Democrat.

And again…

“Just spoke to Gabby Giffords for the first time since the day before she was shot. She looks amazing. Twinkle in her eye and broad smile.” — CNN Chief Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash.

“Senate page just said in Statuary Hall ‘Oh my God. Kelly Ayotte is rocking the mint-green!’ I am partial to Bader Ginsberg‘s red.” — Roll Call‘s Abby Livingston.

“McCain ribbing Kerry as he walks by.” — Politico‘s Manu Raju.

Rep. Terry Sewell is the most energetic greeter of the House! Urrybody gets a kiss and big laugh and a thousand watt smile.” — BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton.

“Lots of schmoozing with former colleagues as Secy Kerry makes his way down the aisle.” — CBS White House radio correspondent Mark Knoller.

“Whoever said that politics is showbiz for ugly people was a master of understatement. Or just blind.” — Reason‘s Nick Gillespie.

“VP Biden has a scratched cornea, reports NBC, which is why he is wearing glasses.” — The Hill‘s Emily Goodin.

Politico Playbook Publish Time: 7:43 a.m.

The Jokester Caucus

  • “Press will now begin attacking Rubio for drinking problem.” — USA Today‘s Paul Singer.
  • “I’m sure I’m going to dislike this but at least Beyonce is performing.” — Logan Dobson, before the SOTU address began.
  • “When is halftime? Where is Beyonce?” — FNC’s Greg Gutfeld.
  • “Who’s the fat lump of shit next to Mrs Obama? #SOTU.” — Anthony Cumia from the Opie and Anthony radio show.
  • “Marco! Pollo! Marco! Pollo! Fish out of water!” [Insert Rubio Joke Here] #Rubioing.” — Syndicated columnist and Bullfight Strategies’ Karl Frisch.
  • “What’s the opposite of 5-Hour Energy? Boehner’s had two of them, at least.” — Bloomberg Business Week‘s Joshua Green.

The Critics

“Really pathetic and sad reflection on media-culture that taking a drink of water can overwhelm everything else.” — Christian Heinze, founder of Prez16.com. Seconded by NRSC Spokesman Brian Walsh, who said, “Exactly.”

Oh, but wait: “Jesus… the water sip blew the whole speech. Was on board until then but he blew it. Cue SNL.” — Jason Killian Meath, President, GOP Media Firm.

“The problem with this speech is a.) we already knew what was in it and b.) little of it is new.” — Politico‘s Ben White.

“I like Rubio’s remarks thus far, dislike the dry mouth. Get the man a water. Let’s hear some solutions.” — Conservative radio host Dana Loesch.

“Was leaning off camera to get water really better than obviously needing one?” — WCP Editor Mike Madden during the GOP response of Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.).

“Rubio keeps grabbing at his face. What’s with that?” — Baron‘s D.C. Editor James McTague.

“Huh, Chris Matthews voted for George W. Bush. You can admit that on MSNBC and still have a job? #MSNBCAfterDark” — U.S. News & World Report‘s Robert Schlesinger at 12:19 a.m.

Gratitude is…

“SOMEBODY PLEASE GIF THAT AWKWARD WATER BOTTLE GRAB, RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!! wowowoowowowowoowowow” — WaPo Express’ Clinton Yates.

“Water grab! Thank God.” — ABC News’ Nico Hines.

“Rubio has serious case of drymouth. Thank god he just took a sip of water.” — Roll Call Senate Editor Emily Pierce.

Jeff Zucker, give this man a raise! 

“CNN has every story covered tonight. On CNN-US: SOTU coverage. On HLN, continuing live coverage of Calif. Manhunt.” — CNN Washington Bureau Chief Sam Feist.

Wardrobe Change

“I just changed into flats because it is SRO in the House press gallery. #SOTU” — TWT‘s Emily Miller.

The sharp-tongued observers… Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“600 sheep must have died to make that fleece.” — FNC “The Five’s” Greg Gutfeld regarding New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s pullover. Gutfeld recently received a sexist award from the Women’s Media Center for referring to Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz as “Frizzilla.” We think this proves that he’s as much anti-fat people as he is against women with bad hairdos.

Politico producer looking for ding dongs

“Anyone got a box of Hostess Ding Dongs that they’re looking to get rid of?” — Politico‘s Caitlin Emma.

Convo Between Two Journos

Bloomberg Business Insider‘s Joshua Green: “U a dope who paid $500 for Twinkies thinking they were going extinct? DM me for a trend piece.” HuffPost‘s Sam Stein:” I did (is this how u use dm?)”

Question NEVER to ponder: “Is it a law of Chapstick buying that you will lose your chapstick within 7 seconds of buying it? Or is that just me?” – U.S. News & World Report‘s Jason Koebler. Pssst Jason…it’s just you!

Is Sherri Shepherd leaving The View?

“Need to ask for a job application @HomeGoods – as much merchandise as I moved its only fitting I go back and help clean up!” — ABC “The View’s” Sherri Shepherd.

Quote Taken Out of Context

“@TheFix Your bottle of Sex Panther cologne has just been Amazon-ed.” — Politico‘s White House Correspondent Glenn Thrush to WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza.

Journo tries to lure journos to event via Petraeous

“Gen. Petraeus is coming to ‘Politics and Pints’ tonight. Are you? (Ok, he isn’t. But you still should.)” — WaPo‘s Cillizza, trying hard to get people to attend his Politics and Pints trivia night at the Cap Lounge.

Following the mistress: a pointless practice?

“I fail to see the journalistic benefit in following Paula Broadwell wherever she goes.” — Mother Jones blogger Adam Serwer.

Journo wonders about journo posture

“Standing desk types: How do you square with laptop use? Standing up, but laptop means bad posture, head angle.” — Politico‘s Patrick Gavin.

Obama and Boehner: Black and Tan

“Obama and Boehner are working on their new budget compromise, a Black & Tan.”  — Conservative Commentator and author Ann Coulter.

Journo becomes his father and Trump offers yet another useless opinion…
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Roll Call’s Next Editor: Who Will it Be?

As Roll Call searches high and low for a new editor, we bring you the prospects and tell you why each candidate will get the job offer and why he or she will not. CQ Roll Call has faced a lot of changes, layoffs and departures this year and more tweaks are on the way with the official merging of CQ Today and Roll Call in November. But first things first — with the recent departure of Editor Scott Montgomery to NPR, they need a new leader, a strong hand who needs authority and freedom to revamp the publication. In the interim they’ve placed CQ Roll Call Deputy Executive Editor Randy Wynn in charge. There’s a great nostalgia and affection for Roll Call among the alums around town. People want to see it succeed. But where is management going with it? In the words of a source long familiar with the inner workings of the publication, searching for a new editor is like asking someone to be captain of a team. The worry is, no one knows what sport they’re playing. The hopefuls are in no significant order. Nor have all of these folks been formally approached by management. CQ Roll Call Publicist Rebecca Gale declined to comment on the list of hopefuls. We wrote all the potential editors, most of whom either declined to comment or didn’t respond to a request for comment.

1. Emily Pierce: Roll Call Senate Editor

Why she’ll get it: A great editor and well-liked by reporters. She came up through the ranks and has been in the newsroom for about a decade. Can anyone remember Roll Call having a female at the helm? Would be a nice touch.

Why she won’t: She lacks experience as a upper level manager. “Although she’s fantastic I doubt they’d go for her,” one spy remarked.

2. Jason Dick: Roll Call House Editor; he has formally applied for the job.
Why he’ll get it: Has the experience from National Journal managing a daily. He is respected and has established relationships with people in the newsroom. He is nothing like his name.
Why he won’t: Too much of a newcomer. Much to its detriment, Roll Call likes old school.
3. David Hawkings: Editor of the CQ Roll Call Daily Briefing
Why he’ll get it: He’s a longtime editor at CQRC, intelligent and an old newspaper soul. He knows the company inside and out and has held numerous editorial positions. From his bio: Senior editor for legislative affairs; co-editor of “Politics in America,” CQ Roll Call‘s signature reference work on members of Congress; the weekly magazine’s economics editor and its congressional affairs editor; and managing editor of the CQ Daily Monitor, the predecessor of CQ Today.
Why he won’t: Because he’s too old school, a dinosaur, and how to manage Roll Call and what direction to take it in is something of a mystery at the moment. Paper needs to move forward. And frankly, sources tell us, it’s just not his thing.
4. Paul Singer:”I wish Roll Call nothing but the best of luck and I’m not talking to anybody about a job there,” Singer said, when we posed questions on the matter.
Why he’ll get it: Devoted to Roll Call. He’s the dark horse candidate and also a natural teacher — he teaches journalism at Georgetown.
Why he won’t get it: Because he jumped ship for USA Today, where he now works. What’s more, there is no offer or discussion on the table.
5. Randy Wynn: Acting, temporary Roll Call Editor
Why he’ll get it: If they suspect he might be good in the interim, maybe they’re priming and testing him for more treacherous waters.
Why he won’t: He has been at the publication since 1997. Despite a wealth of experience — eight years previously at Thomson Newspapers Washington Bureau — he doesn’t have the newsroom street cred and loyalty that some of the others do.

 

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

HuffPost media writer Jason Linkins eats the above ham on a biscuit in gravy over the weekend. Why we have to be subjected to this cream sauce vomit on a plate is anyone’s guess.

Women are special. All women. Harriet Tubman. Eva Braun [Hitler's longtime companion pictured at right], Fergie. That serial killer Charlize Theron played in Monster. Mrs. Butterworth. ALL women. All. Equally. Special.” — Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert addresses the War on Women last night responding to Ann Romney‘s declaration that “women are special.”

Uh oh.

“Hours as a homeowner before suffering an injury requiring an ER trip: 4.” — Politico‘s Reid Epstein reported on Twitter late last night.We inquired what happened and he replied, “I’ll live. I’m sure inquiring minds can be kept busy with other matters.” (The next lawmaker Epstein interviews should offer that reply– “I’m sure inquiring minds can be kept busy with other matters.” We’re sure Politico editors will love that.)

Baier Vomit

A viewer to FNC’s Bret Baier: “You look tired…rightly so. Hope you’re feeling ok. Glad you’re back safely.” He replied, “Thanks – i guess Good to be back.” And this...”Sorry you didn’t like it-thnx for watching” – Baier in response to a viewer who wrote, “Bret Baier, poor taste-Disrespectful to a pres candidate. Women already see him wrong.”

Politico Dumbs Down its Hiring

Politico, a publication known for its tireless around-the-clock reporting, has just dumbed itself down with the new hire of TBD‘s Ryan Kearney, a reporter known for going slim on facts and using cardboard figures in video interviews. One question for VandeHarris: Are you going to allow this ex-TBDer to send weird rubber dolls and other bizarre tchotchkes to the private homes of journalists and readers around town? Clearly those in charge of him at TBD didn’t know or didn’t care to know how strange his s0-called reporting could get. Kearney writes on Twitter Monday, “I can’t quit you, Rosslyn: I’m back at 1100 Wilson, as Politico‘s deputy editor of breaking news.”

ABC7 reporter Stephen Tschida‘s new Twitter avatar

USA Today‘s Paul Singer preaching to the choir: “Pollen now deeper on my sidewalk than snow got this winter. Do I have to shovel?”

Two stories, multiple mentions of pit stains

“While one of those shirts appeared darker under the arms in his office last month, Falcone said he doesn’t sweat and didn’t when checking his TW Steel watch during January’s down-to-the- wire loan negotiations.” — Bloomberg‘s Katherine Burton in a story on Phil Falcone, the hedge-fund manager who invested $3 billion in a wireless broadband startup LightSquared Inc. and is facing possible bankruptcy and a censure by the SEC.  The Daily Beast‘s Eli Lake also mentioned his pit stains. In his story on Falcone, Lake wrote, “The only sign Falcone was feeling any pressure were the deep perspiration stains under his armpits, a condition that afflicts many men who are not in jeopardy of losing billions of their own and other people’s money.”

From the Dept. of Bragiculture

“Thank u!” RT @mrbirdman305: @NorahODonnell great job on this particular story tonight on the @cbsnews” — CBS News Chief White House Correspondent Norah O’Donnell. “Thx!” RT @Jacob_Long_WMBD: @NorahODonnell Solid coverage on the #Secret_Service scandal.”

Journo suffers cramps en route home

“Got an abdominal cramp walking home from the Metro the other day. #outofshape.” — Politico White House reporter Byron Tau.

Peter Ogburn contributed to this report.


USA Today Hires Paul Singer

Paul Singer is joining USA Today as their new politics editor. Singer, who was been a star reporter for Roll Call, will be joining the Washington bureau for the paper to cover the 2012 campaign. He has been an investigative reporter for Roll Call since 2007.

The full memo from Roll Call is below

Nearly five years to the day after he arrived at Roll Call, Paul Singer
is leaving to become the Politics Editor at USA Today. 

Singer joined Roll Call Feb. 20, 2007 as the paper¹s investigative
reporter. He was later named Associate Editor and given various
editing/management duties, including helping Jennifer Yachnin create Roll
Call¹s ethics beat.

Singer¹s investigations have resulted in at least two ethics
investigations of sitting Members of Congress, helped feed the FBI¹s
investigation of Rep. Jack Murtha, and led Congress to cancel wasteful
projects. Singer¹s discovery of repeated failures by Members of Congress
to report profits from stock sales on their annual financial disclosure
forms led the House to redesign the forms with a box that more clearly
indicates the capital gains reporting requirement.

In 2011, Singer set up our influence/ethics/investigations unit and
assembled the crack staff now lovingly called Team Wasta. He also created
the HowGovtWorks Twitter feed and homepage.

He¹s been a willing workhorse in our newsroom. He¹s been a steady
advocate for excellent journalism, a tireless contributor to every spoken
(and sometimes unspoken) need. It¹s hard to believe sometimes that he
does it all without sugar.

We will miss him, but we wish him the best.

 

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

Tense newsroom phone call

“From overhearing one side of @michaelschaffer’s phone call, sounds like Washington Post is unhappy about this.” –WCP‘s Mike Madden, who linked to this story about a certain detail they say WaPo blatantly missed. WaPo‘s Vernon Loeb, meanwhile, claims it was a matter of emphasis.

Whoa! Politico‘s Bresnahan joins Twitter?

“Is he aware Twitter is not a snack food?” — Roll Call‘s Paul Singer initial (joking) reaction to Politico‘s Capitol Hill warlord John Bresnahan joining Twitter. He soon added, “Kidding aside, you should follow .@brespolitico. There is no reporter in DC I respect more.” So far, Bresnahan hasn’t tweeted a single message. Stay tuned…

Politico teaches Wemple art of self-congratulation

“There’s a brighter side, however, and it relates to Politico’s clever twist of logic-in-service-of-self-congratulation. If the paper can say it’s the No. 1 preference of Washington readers among four competitors, then I can say I’m the No. 1 tennis player in the world among my closest friends. Thanks, Politico! ” — WaPo Erik Wemple‘s take on a new Politico ad in which they claim they are the most read paper on Capitol Hill among The Hill, CQ Weekly, NJ and Roll Call.

From the Road

“Restaurant next to my Jacksonville hotel called The Tilted Kilt, which hotel manager discouraged, calling it a ‘Scottish Hooters.’ Oh.”– CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight” Senior Digital Producer Steve Krakauer.

Investigative reporting at a glance…

“Bonus of spending time on trail: Returning to find your coffee mugs were tossed out.” — Slate‘s Dave Weigel. WaPo’s Erik Wemple: “Did you leave’em in the sink?” Weigel: “Indeed! A cleaning person who had washed them was replaced by one who did not.”

D. Shuster Wants to Shake Things Up

A new radio show is launching in Washington this weekend and David Shuster is host.

Whoa! That D. Shuster?

The show debuts this weekend from Noon to 3 p.m. on 1480 AM otherwise known as We Act Radio DC. Among D.’s guests will be Roll Call‘s Paul Singer. D. says he will continue his duties as a fill-in for Keith Olbermann on Current TV.

In other D. Shuster news that he won’t SHUT UP about (we’re totally kidding, D.), he’s launching a new website that he claims will be “amazing” and “shake things up.” Watch out Politico CLICK. “I’ve been working with a few friends on a new journalism venture that we are beginning to roll out on FB, twitter, and via a radio show I’m hosting each Saturday in DC starting this weekend,” he told FishbowlDC. “We aren’t doing a full pr blitz just yet… that will come later in the spring. The website we launch in a few months will be pretty amazing and should shake things up.”

We cannot wait.

UPDATE: Why is Shuster jumping into this new radio show? Find out…

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Journo’s Hate Mail Takes Amusing Twist

Like many Washington journalists, Roll Call Associate Editor Paul Singer gets his share of hate mail. A recent missive involves reaction to a story involving GOP Presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich coming to Congress “impoverished”  and leaving a rich man.  Singer explains, “The data we were working off was Newt’s 1979 financial disclosure showing $10,000 income the year before and bank debts of more than $15,000. By 1995 he had annual income of about $650,000 and no reportable liabilities.”

The annoyed reader wrote: “How can a collage professor…in 1979…be ‘impoverished’?  I don’t think that word means what you think it means. Don’t let your editor bully you into putting words into your work when you know it’s not true.  You’ll get a lot less hate-mail from the likes of me.”

Singer’s response: “It was my choice of words, and I guess a poor choice. I was trying to make the point that he had a small salary and bigger debts (i.e. very little wealth) and he went on the generate a 6-figure income (much greater wealth). My apologies for the ungraceful word choice. But thanks for reading.”

Several Newt fans complained to Singer about that word choice.  On the subject of hate mail, Singer reasons, “I respond to a lot of my hate mail, figuring it can’t hurt to explain why I wrote what I wrote, though it almost never helps.”

In this case, Singer was proven wrong. The angry reader wrote back, saying, “The fact that you would respond to some douche bag like myself, particularly after having a martini, gives you a lot of points. Well played my friend. I will say nothing but good things about you to all of my douche bag friends.”

Q: Where Were You on Sept. 11?

Today we ask Washington, D.C. journalists one question:

Where were you on Sept. 11?

Politico‘s Roger Simon: “I was just climbing in the car to drive to work when my wife came rushing into the garage to tell me of the attack on the first tower. Made phone calls and scribbled notes while driving into work, by which time second tower had been hit. Began making more calls, taking more notes and writing when the plane hit the Pentagon. More calls, more notes, more writing. Journalism can be a great anesthetic…until it wears off.”

The Hill‘s White House Correspondent Sam Youngman: “I was in college at Western Kentucky University. We had put the school paper to bed the night before, so I was sleeping in when my roommate woke me up. We sat there in silence watching the TV as the towers burned. He got up to get a beer, and I walked to the newsroom. A couple days later, my hillbilly buddies and I were ordering hundreds of bourbons at an all-you-can-drink bar. It seems silly, but listening to my drunk country buddies talk about what they would do to bin Laden gave me hope for the future of the country.”

Roll Call‘s John Stanton: “I was at the Inside Washington Office news room in Crystal City, which had a pretty great view of the Potomac and Pentagon. My desk faced out of a window, and I was just sitting down to check Drudge to see if he had any stories on the plane crashing into the building in New York. Something caught my eye over the top of my monitor. When I looked up you could see smoke and then flames coming from the Pentagon.”

HuffPost‘s Ryan Grim: “I was working at Chestertown Middle School on the Eastern Shore as an aide in a classroom of kids with behavioral problems (the same middle school I attended, actually). I remember giving a lesson about who Osama bin Laden was and why al Qaeda hated us. They actually sat and listened quietly to the entire thing, unpersuaded by my promises that Osama had no designs on Chestertown. My girlfriend, now wife, Elizan, was in Manhattan, and I was able to get a hold of her in the afternoon. Three weeks earlier, I’d turned down a job with Morgan Stanley on the 42nd floor of the second tower, a decision I’m very pleased with on a number of levels. Though I suspect I’d have been fine because I’m not one to be in the office by 9 a.m.”

Politico’s Julie Mason: “I drove with a coworker in a berserk, hurtling panic in a rental car from D.C. to NYC and covered the story from there for the Houston Chronicle for about 10 days. The thing that no one likes to say is that it was really the story of a lifetime — a huge challenge to try to understand and explain. And the trickiest part was writing about it clearly, without being overwrought — especially when you felt overwrought. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years.”

NBC and MSNBC “The Daily Rundown” Host Chuck Todd: “I was at ‘The Hotline,’ our offices at The Watergate on the third floor. We decided to publish, didn’t know what else to do. We turned it into a public service of sorts. Just loaded it up with every bit of info we could get our hands on, whatever every network was reporting. I’ll never forget the visual of my staff racing to the big windows we had overlooking the Potomac and simply staring in the sky wondering if another plane was coming – total frozen fear. I wouldn’t let anyone take the Metro home. A few of us with cars took everyone home. The four issues of that week 9/11,9/12, 9/13 and 9/14 are the proudest issues I oversaw during my days there. I still have them, framed.”

WaPo Opinion Writer Jonathan Capehart: “On Sept. 11, I went to vote in the Democratic Primary and then headed to my desk at the Bloomberg for Mayor campaign. At one point, I looked up at the bank of televisions and said, ‘Look, the World Trade Center is on fire!’ The rest of the day was a literal nightmare.”

C-SPAN Communications Director Howard Mortman: “Ten years ago I was still with ‘The Hotline,’ writing my online column.  Sept. 11, 2001 was the day of the New York City mayoral primary.  That morning, I boarded an Amtrak train to go cover the primary.  I even had an invite to Michael Bloomberg‘s election-night party.  The train left Washington around 8:30 a.m.  As I approached Baltimore headed north, my cell phone went off twice.  My wife of four months and a good friend both told me that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. Both warned me not to continue on to New York.  A minute later, the train arrived in Baltimore.  I decided to abandon the trip and got off.  The train left the station (I learned later that that train was one of many that became stranded that day).  In Baltimore, I saw on TV what was happening.  There were already huge lines for taxis.  No real options to head back south to D.C.  Back down on the train tracks, the light rail was still operating.  I got on a deserted light rail train. But it terminated at BWI airport.  About 30 minutes later I arrived at BWI airport.  By that point airports had stopped operating.  BWI was full of stranded — and dazed — travelers.  I saw on TV that the twin towers were gone.  I had no way of getting home, so I called my parents. They drove from Greenbelt and picked me up.  They took me back with them, where my wife met me.  We drove back to DC (we lived then at 22nd and L Streets, NW).  An eerie feeling getting into the city, when so many were leaving.  The city was empty.  Outside our building was a humvee and soldiers holding machine guns. We went out for a walk, toward the Pentagon, saw the fire and smelled the smoke, saw more soldiers, walked near the State Department and White House, then returned home and watched TV the rest of the day and night.”

Slate’s Dave Weigel: “No great story here — I was in my parents’ house in Delaware, a few days before heading back to school. My granddad was watching TV while I was upstairs updating my HTML blog. He called me down, and then we watched TV, and then my mother called from a barber shop to ask if we were watching. We picked up my dad from his evacuated building, and later my friends who’d also gotten the day off hooked up with me for a trip to buy the new Dylan album. Returning from that, I updated my blog again.”

The Washington Examiner‘s Nikki Schwab: “Sept. 11, 2001 was a day of immense sadness, but for those of us living in Southwestern Pennsylvania, it was also a day of massive confusion. I was a senior in high school at the time, having lived in the small town of Ligonier, Pa., my entire life. After the World Trade Center had been hit in New York City my friend Brea ran into Ms. Barr’s jazz band homeroom and said, ‘We’re being attacked.’ We threatened a mutiny against music that morning and informed Ms. Barr that we wanted to watch CNN. She finally obliged. We watched the Twin Towers collapse and heard the news about the Pentagon. I always carried my cell phone, what we nicknamed ‘the contraband,’ to school even though it was against school rules. Using that phone my friends secretly called their parents from the instrument storage room. That’s when we found out about how close Flight 93 was to where we lived. My friends’ moms had seen the plane wobbling through the air before it finally came down about 30 miles away in Shanksville, Pa. At the time we didn’t know why one of the hijacked planes was flying through our backyards. Rumor on the street was that it was on its way to attack Pittsburgh. (Yeah, right). Now we know that it was the heroism of the passengers and flight attendants that most likely saved countless lives right here in D.C.”

AP’s Phil Eillott: “I was a junior at Ohio University on Sept. 11, 2001, and the managing editor of our independent student-run daily newspaper, The Post. It was our first week of publishing for the academic year and I was the late editor the day before. I was at the office until after 4 a.m., making sure the edition got to print by the 6 a.m. deadline. I was still asleep when the first tower was hit. An early editor called with few details to wake me. I was getting ready for work when a second phone call came in with news of a second plane. Not quite understanding what was going on, I made a quick stop at the bookstore to pick up a textbook on my way to The Post. By the time I arrived in the newsroom, the significance of what had happened started to sink in.”

HuffPost‘s Christina Wilkie: “I was an intern at The Brookings Institution, and I arrived at work just after the first tower was hit. Twenty of us crowded around a TV in the conference room as we tried to absorb what was going on. There was another new intern, Tracee, who had never been in a big city before and didn’t know where to go, so I took her with me and we walked up Massachusetts Ave in the middle of the street, 30 blocks to my house. We sat together, virtual strangers, for the next six hours.”

Politico‘s Keach Hagey: “I was in Manhattan, on my way to work. I ran into a friend coming out of the subway at 23rd St. who said, ‘Turn around.’ I looked down Broadway and saw the first tower fall. People were just standing in the middle of the street, screaming.” [Hagey was writing for non-profits at the time.]

C-SPAN’s Steve Scully: “I was on C-SPAN doing a segment on President Bush’s education agenda when I received a note about a plane hitting the first tower of the World Trade Center. It was approximately 8:47. The House was in at 9 a.m. so I was off the air at 9. I turned the corner and saw the 2nd plane hit the 2nd tower LIVE at 9:02. Then immediately mobilized because I knew, we knew, this is not just an accident. We stayed on air for days after that.”

ABC White House Correspondent Jake Tapper: “I was in my apartment in Adams Morgan trying to figure out what I would write about that day when my then-boss at Salon.com, Kerry Lauerman, called. He told me to turn on the TV. I did just as the second plane hit. No one knew what was happening. Kerry soon called again because there were rumors that the Mall was on fire. In reality, it was smoke from the Pentagon. I hopped on my bicycle to go check it out; I didnt want to have to worry about traffic. Rumors were swirling — there was a bomb at the State Department, a car bomb at Treasury. At the Mall, traffic was insane, cars were at a standstill. I ran into a friend, Ellen Gamerman, then of the Baltimore Sun. Car radios were blaring news and people would gather around to listen. I decided to get out of there and gave Ellen a lift on the bike. When we got near the White House, a panicky policeman told us to get out of there as soon as possible since there were reports that a fourth plane was headed to the White House. Right around then is when the towers started to fall. The whole world had changed. No one knew what to do. I called around and made sure everyone I knew and cared about in NYC and New Jersey was OK.  My little brother was living in Cairo, so there was a whole new worry I immediately adopted. I was glued to the TV for hours. No one knew
how many people had died. Peter Jennings was great that day. A friend of mine and I went to go give blood. We just needed to do something. We walked to the Red Cross but they were overwhelmed so they sent us away. I think all that blood ended up getting spoiled anyway. Kerry kept calling me to ask me what I was going to write. [Read the story here.] It wasn’t easy to write that day. Looking back on it, I’m amazed at how dispassionate the story seems. I was overwhelmed with grief. The next day I went to the Capitol — I
worked in the Senate Periodical Press Gallery — and called Gary Hart
and Warren Rudman, who had chaired a commission warning of a terrorist
attack. Their warnings had been ignored. That day I got angry. It was a weird time to be a reporter.”

WaPo‘s Aaron Blake: “Getting ready for my first day of college at the University of Minnesota. I still went to class for some reason. I think that’s proof that this didn’t set in right away.”

Poshbrood Travel Blog Founder and blogger Elizabeth Thorp: ” On 9-11, I had a plane ticket to fly from IAD to Denver around 11 am. I was Executive Director of the National Campaign for Hearing Health and we had a board meeting in Denver. A few colleagues had gone out Monday. I don’t love to fly (ironic, huh since I’m a travel writer and founder of travel website and consultancy Poshbrood?) My grandfather was killed in a small plane crash and I grew up in a family of nervous fliers. Almus and I had been married a year and lived in a condo near the Cathedral. I had gotten up early to exercise, had come back and was making coffee, reading the paper and watching the news. I was extra nervous about flying that day, just had a bad feeling and was dragging my feet. My insomniac mom called from LA around 8:30 a.m. and I told her I was going to Colorado but really didn’t want to fly…she said the weather’s great today, you’ll have a smooth flight! Later I was watching the Today Show (way pre-George on GMA which is our new morning show) and they broke in to say a small plane had it the Tower and showed the footage. I had been in the building recently for a client meeting and thought ‘the building is huge, there is no way that’s a small plane.’ I got online (dial up!) and checked to see how many other United flights there were to Denver as I didn’t want to head to the airport yet (but should by 9:30 am). There were more flights and I decided to wait a bit before heading to airport. I kept watching the TV and live (I remember it was Katie Couric and Al Roker talking) watched as the second plane hit the Tower. My blood ran cold and I knew something deliberate, horrible and evil was happening and it didn’t matter if I went to the silly board meeting or not. My husband came in from his run and he said he knew by my face something was very, very wrong. My parent’s called me to make sure I didn’t get on the plane (duh!) and several people thought I might be going to LA from IAD and couldn’t get through to me because lines were jammed. We watched live as Jim Miklaszewski reported an explosion at the Pentagon which was the other IAD plane and got a text that the rest of the office downtown at 17th and K were evacuating. We went to the roof of our condo and saw the plume of smoke at the Pentagon and I couldn’t get my head around the malicious evil of “people” who would deliberately crash a plane of innocents. I still can’t. We then started hearing about the PA plane crash and acquaintances or classmates who were in planes or the Tower. I cried and watched TV all day. In the afternoon, I walked over to the Cathedral with our dogs and met some nice out of town visitors. They were seeking comfort because a colleague of theirs had been on the flight that went into the Pentagon. It was so very sad. Still is. I have my unused 9-11 plane ticket somewhere in a box of keepsakes. After that day for awhile I was always given extra searches, pulled out of line and had bags searched. Even when 8 months pregnant! Maybe because I was flying on 9/11?”

Roll Call‘s Paul Singer: “I was the head of AP’s bureau in Cleveland — we were in our statewide morning news conference call when the second plane struck, and everybody just said ‘Well, OK, scrap everything else we were planning’ and hung up. Shortly thereafter we got an alert that there was a hijacked plane with a bomb aboard that was being forced to land at the Cleveland airport. Apparently flight 93 was on the same flight path as another plane headed west, and there was air traffic confusion as they passed into Ohio (the regional FAA station is in Oberlin). Flight 93 did a buttonhook and went down in Shanksville; the other plane was sent to land in Cleveland. The airport is about 15 miles out of town, but the mayor decided to evacuate downtown Cleveland. It’s a small city with a few major roads and bridges which all instantly became parking lots with panicked people trying to flee. The mayor held a press conference and I had to basically climb over cars to traverse the four blocks from the AP bureau to city hall. I had taken the Cleveland job in May and I am pretty sure that the ‘hijacked plane/bomb/evacuation’ series was my first experience filing an URGENT series for the AP; I had no idea what codes to use or what format. I had our veteran sportswriter standing behind me basically dictating to me while I hammered on the keyboard. It was very nearly Sept. 12 before I was finally at my neighborhood bar with a drink in my hand watching reruns of the collapsing towers over and over again, and wondering what we had just lived through.”

The Daily Caller‘s David Martosko: “I was on my way up I-395 on my way to work in DC, listening to the radio with my wife Susan — who had a dentist appointment downtown that morning, when Flight 11 hit the North tower. By the time we made it to my office, the Pentagon had just been struck. It took me two hours to get to my where Susan was, just 6 blocks away. She was waiting on the curb since the dentist’s building had been evacuated. We spent another four hours in the car trying to cross the 14th Street Bridge. Eventually, when the bridge was opened to (outgoing only) traffic, we made our way home. Along the way we offered to pick up several people who said they were too scared to go underground into the Metro tunnels. I learned later on that some of my co-workers had gotten home to Virginia much faster by abandoning their cars and walking. As luck would have it, I was due for a blood donation — I had been giving a pint every two months since high school, since my own life was saved by an emergency transfusion when I was very young. I stood in line that night at a Red Cross donor center in Arlington, along with dozens of others. Many were first-time blood donors.  There simply wasn’t much else we could do at that point. Susan and I had  several lunches and dinners at the Afghan restaurant on Route 1 in Alexandria, since the owners had (literally overnight) covered the building’s roof-eaves with red, white, and blue bunting. It was the first of many signs that our neighbors of Middle Eastern descent would suddenly have to work twice as hard to demonstrate their love of country, and that they would need our support. The only other thing I remember vividly about that day was holding on to Susan, and she to me, and wondering if World War III had just begun.

A special note of thanks to all who responded.

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