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Posts Tagged ‘Robert Draper’

FishbowlDC Interview With Ex-Gawker Jim Newell

Say hello to Wonkette, Salon and The Guardian Contributor Jim Newell, who recently departed Gawker for what, even he’s still not sure. He worked there for a year and a half as their Politics Editor and left at the end of January. “New opportunities, I don’t know. They were going in a different direction,” he said in a phone interview. “I think they are doing less full-time politics, which is what I was doing there, so I moved on.” When Newell sent me the following email at 2:50 a.m. this morning I figured he had stayed up late watching LMN. He wrote, “Here you go Betsy! I hope it’s alright, I only went on one extended murder fantasy.” Born and raised in Annapolis, Md., Newell looks back on his childhood and describes himself as a shy, not very rebellious kid who lived on the water, which may not mean a whole lot.”We just happened to live in Annapolis by the water,” he said. “We’d look at the water, we wouldn’t go in the water.” For the last several months, he has enjoyed making his own hours as a freelancer, but he thinks he may need to start job hunting for something full-time soon. “I need structure,” he said. “I have just been sitting on my couch for five years. I’d like to do something where I can write longform, where I can go out and report and take a little bit more time. But I’ll take what I can get. I’ve cursed out most of the newspapers in town.”

If you were a carbonated beverage, which would you be? This is a ludicrous question.

How often do you Google yourself? Usually if I want to see if I’m getting any responses to a piece that I’ve put work into. So like once a decade.

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor/boss (or vice versa)? “I’m leaving you for Gawker.”

Who is your favorite working journalist and why? I don’t know, there are a bunch of bloggers and reporters I read regularly but there’s no one muckraking investigative long-form shitkicker who really stands out, off the top of my head. Probably because I mostly read “campaign journalism” now, which is all nonsense. I just finished Robert Draper‘s new book about the House, though, and it was excellent. Now I’m reading Steve Coll‘s new book about Exxon Mobil, which is a goddamn professional reporting job.

Do you have a favorite word? No.

Who would you rather have dinner with – Ice’s wife, Coco, Kim Kardashian or Lindsay Lohan? Tell us why. Lohan, I guess. She has stories/is a human being.

The Earth’s human population is dying out and you must save it. You will spend a romantic evening with either Gabby Sidibe (“Precious” etc..) or Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas). Who will it be? (Neither is not an option.) Interesting pair of choices, there. Is Fishbowl DC suggesting that black women with strong personalities are such unappealing potential mates that I’d consider allowing the Earth’s human population to die out rather than procreate with them? I would let the human population die off regardless of who it is, thank you very much. Anyway… Sidibe?

Editor’s note: Easy there, Newell. Precious has eaten a human for breakfast for far less. To insinuate that we think these women are sexually unappealing is wrong. Precious is bursting with sex appeal and watch out if you get in SJL’s way during any State of the Union Address when she manhandles the President for a handshake or kiss. We have previously thrown ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner into the ring for female interviewees but didn’t think he’d be appealing for you.

What swear word do you use most often? Shit. My favorite though is “fucktard,” but only as a treat.

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.) Ideally it would be four middle-aged/elderly white men working at the nation’s premier news outlets where they’ve been wrong about every major event of the past 20 years, but I think the other Sunday shows have them all under contract. I think I’d just put four planks of wood in the chairs and meditate for an hour. It’d be less damaging to the world.

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Whoa! Draper on Edward’s Witness List?

Somehow Robert Draper, contributor for NYT Magazine, GQ and National Geographic, has wound up on John Edwards‘ witness list. Unfortunately for Edwards, Draper is a little too far away to help. Draper has publicly discussed ghost writing for Edwards and his experiences with Elizabeth Edwards. “It’s fair to say they are a problematic couple,” he said in 2010. He also said he was overwhelmed by John Edwards’ superficiality. Watch an unflattering interview he gave on Edwards here.

A Soirée for Manuel Roig-Franzia

An unusual group of Washington journos is convening on June 23 at the home of Politico‘s Lois Romano and politico bigwig Sven Holmes to celebrate The Rise of Marco Rubio by WaPo‘s Manuel Roig-Franzia. Expect to sip on cocktails made with special rum from the Shapira Family Distillery. The book is scheduled for release on June 19.

Apart from Romano and Holmes, the journalists and publicist types on the host committee are: Robert Draper, a contributor to GQ and NYT Mag, WaPo “In the Loop” writer Al Kamen (who almost never makes appearances on the Washington cocktail circuit), Michael Manganiello, a partner at HCM Strategists, WaPo’s Maralee Schwartz, Ian Shapira and Peter Wallsten, and SKDKnickerbocker’s Jill Zuckman.

Please note: Sven Holmes’ title is so crazy Washington long that we’re putting it after the jump.

Correction: The invitation read Ira Shapira and has since been corrected as has our post above. Thanks to AnonymASS who alerted us by writing in this: “It’s IAN Shapira not IRA … espeically if you’re touting his family’s spirits company, you would think you’d know how to get his name correct.” — Thanks Ass, you’re right and that is just lovely.

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Kathleen Parker Fetes ‘Brash’ Author in Georgetown Home, Hems and Haws About Eliot Spitzer

WaPo columnist Kathleen Parker hosted guests at her Georgetown home Tuesday to celebrate author and freelance writer Robert Draper‘s book, Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives.

Draper’s book largely focuses on the Republicans who swooped into Congress “intending to shake things up” in 2010. “This was my interest,” Draper told FBDC, “to see whether all these guys, all these freshmen, about a third of whom had no political experience, would succeed in changing the institution or be changed by it.” He said the jury is still out on this one.

What Good We Do was completed over the course of 14 months. Draper conducted about 300 interviews with several freshmen in the House along with some high-level Republicans and Democrats. He said he was surprised to see how much pressure Republican congressmen are under from activists and Tea Partiers in their districts. “Even after the debt ceiling [vote], when the approval rating for Congress as a whole plummeted and there was a reason to work together, they still lived in mortal fear of the activists who would show up to their town halls and scream at them and say ‘why did you vote for the debt ceiling? We should shut the government down, we should learn how to live within our means and if that’s the consequence so be it.’”

Draper’s book was published in late April.

Extras

Parker’s home is beautiful but we ran into a few oddities; this giant pear set on a decorative table, for example.

Parker has a pet poodle that she saved from a shelter. His name is Ollie and he’s completely blind in both eyes.

We asked Parker what she thought about her short-lived CNN co-host and former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer replacing Keith Olbermann on Current TV. “No, I’m not going to answer that,” she quickly said… before actually answering. “Well, I sent him an email and I said, ‘congratulations, I think you’ll do well there.’ I’ll say that.”

In his Wikipedia entry Draper is described as being “known for his brash and self-confident personality.” He was self-confident but didn’t come off as brash. He told us that part of the entry came from a former editor who made a toast at Draper’s wedding rehearsal, saying “Robert’s a great writer and if you don’t believe me, ask him.” Draper said Wikipedia “seized upon” the quote and “deduced from that that I’m brash or have a  healthy estimation of my abilities or something.”

Journos Turn Up to Game Change Soiree

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Savannah Guthrie, Michael Feldman and Game Change authors.

On Monday night, Time and New York magazines hosted a party at the W Hotel’s P.O.V. bar to celebrate Mark Halperin and John Heilemann’s Game Change. Guests poured in, even though it was a national holiday. Some purchased a copy of the controversial book, which is said to be selling out in New York and D.C.

Halperin and Heilemann signed books throughout the night.

Attendees included Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter, Peter and Diana Beinart, Veep Biden’s Spokesman Jay Carney, ABC’s David Chalian, Shelby Coffey, FT’s Clive Crook, GQ’s Robert Draper, Time Washington Bureau Chief Michael Duffy, HuffPost’s Michael Falcone, CNN’s Ed Henry, Sam Feist, Glover Park Group’s Michael Feldman, White House advisor Austan Goolsbee, Washingtonian’s Garrett Graff, MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell and Savannah Guthrie, Aspen Institute’s Walter Isaacson, CBS’s Bill Plante, AP’s Jonathan Prince, consultant Doug Schoen, CNBC’s Steve Scully, and Daily Caller’s Jon Ward, and Politico’s VandeHarris, Mike Allen, Anne Schroeder Mullins, Bill Nichols and Patrick Gavin, to name a few.

Photographs courtesy of Julie Fischer Photography.
More party pictures after the jump…

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President Obama & Valerie Jarrett, BFF

This is the cover of the upcoming NYT Magazine. The cover story “The Ultimate Obama Insider” is by Robert Draper, who interviewed Obama. (h/t Mike Allen on Twitter)

Morning Reading List, 10.31.08

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Good morning Washington.

Got a blind item, interesting link, funny note, comment, birthday, anniversary or anything of the sort for Morning Reading List? Drop us a line or let us know in the tips box below.

We’ve got your morning mix of media Muesli after the jump…

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