The New Yorker‘s anticipated, head-turning profile of Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA), the recently elected chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, is out. While the profile focuses much on Issa’s past — “among other things, been indicted for stealing a car, arrested for carrying a concealed weapon, and accused by former associates of burning down a building” — it also includes interesting background from his PR chief, Kurt Bardella:
Issa has set up what his aides call Issa Enterprises, a highly organized effort to manage his image. Kurt Bardella, the spokesman, who is twenty-seven, and whom Issa calls “my secret weapon,” fiercely screens all interviews. Bardella has a reputation as one of the savviest young spokesmen on Capitol Hill, someone who understands the complicated new media environment.
Over lunch at Bistro Bis, a French restaurant near the Capitol, Bardella was surprisingly open in his disparagement of the media. He said, “Some people in the press, I think, are just lazy as hell. There are times when I pitch a story and they do it word for word. That’s just embarrassing. They’re adjusting to a time that demands less quality and more quantity. And it works to my advantage most of the time, because I think most reporters have liked me packaging things for them. Most people will opt for what’s easier, so they can move on to the next thing. Reporters are measured by how often their stuff gets on Drudge. It’s a bad way to be, but it’s reality.”
Rarely do you hear such a “how the sausage is made,” on the record quote, let alone by the communications chief of a powerful congressmen to a major publication. The New Yorker‘s Ryan Lizza adds more: Read more