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Friday, June 05, 2009

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"The White House believes they broke through with President Barack Obama's speech to Muslims in Cairo. They say the speech established the president as an honest broker. But there are worries inside the White House that they may have raised expectations too high. The mantra from the White House: It was only one speech. No one expected the waters to part on the issue of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The speech has received praise and criticism from both the Muslim world and in Israel. But the question now -- will those communities deliver and make the sacrifices they need to achieve peace?" (ABCNews)



"Bill Burton is the baby-faced political op with a little too much junk food under his belt—and, at 31, with one of the political world’s longest résumés in media relations—who runs the pressroom at the White House. He’s got possibly the littlest office in the West Wing, but it’s where you want your West Wing office to be, guarding somebody more important than you. Burton is guarding his boss, the president’s press secretary, Robert Gibbs—who guards the president—from me. The Obama presidency is striving to be the most open and available in modern history, hence—and I am here on the 98th day—its first 100 days of remarkable staging, including dogs, wife, children, mother-in-law, bailouts, and handshakes and bows with dubious world leaders. But what it doesn’t want to be open about is the staging itself. One of its least favorite subjects is media. As much as the Obama-ites don’t want to be as defensive and recalcitrant as the Bushes were when it came to the press, having methodically reviewed all lessons from recent administrations, they also don’t want to seem as clever, pleased with themselves, and publicity-crazed as the Clintons, who talked endlessly of media strategies—precisely because they are much more clever and publicity-crazed." (Vanity Fair)



"NBC was going to gather about 50 show runners, producers and writers from the network's prime-time comedies and dramas today for a big welcome to the Peacock network shindig on the NBC Universal lot. But the meeting was abruptly canceled, apparently to deal with the reality prima donnas. Besides getting the isn't-NBC-a-wonderful-company presentation, the assembled producers were going to hear from NBC Entertainment Co-Chairs Ben Silverman and Marc Graboff and President Angela Bromstad. Marketing chief John Miller was going to talk about the campaigns the network would be working on for the fall, and there was even going to be a session devoted to NBC's pro-social initiatives ... NBC is expected to reschedule the meet-and-greet later this summer. The cancellation may be a blessing in disguise for Silverman. The get-together was originally going to be held at his Pacific Palisades home, but he moved it to the NBC Universal lot because, we hear, he was worried about making it to Game 1 of the Lakers-Magic NBA championship series tonight in time for the tip-off." (LAT via NYMag)



"A Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll released Thursday is the latest survey to find no clear favorite in next Tuesday's Democratic primary for the Virginia governorship. The poll, taken June 1-3 of 600 likely voters, has state Sen. Creigh Deeds at 30 percent, former state Rep. Brian Moran at 27 percent and former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe at 26 percent. The poll said that 17 percent of likely voters are undecided. It also has a sampling margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points, so the Democratic race is a toss-up .. Republican nominee Bob McDonnell leads all three Democrats in a hypothetical November matchup." (CQPolitics)

"IT was quite a farewell party for New York Observer Editor-in-Chief Peter Kaplan (who's going to Condé Nast Traveler) at the Century Club the other night. Gay Talese, Charlie Rose (whose TV show Kaplan once produced) and former 'Sex and the City' columnist Candace Bushnell paid their respects, as did publisher Jared Kushner and girlfriend Ivanka Trump. The guest of honor toasted Observer founder Arthur Carter and executive editor Peter Stevenson before heading to an after- party at Elaine's, where he was joined by such past Observers as Frank DiGiacomo and former intern Bobby Kennedy III. Kaplan's staff also presented him with a mock Observer issue featuring tributes to him by Tom Wolfe and Mayor Bloomberg, among others. Bloomberg's note elicited smiles among the paper's staff, given that he called an Observer reporter a 'disgrace' at a press conference last week." (PageSix)

"Vice President Biden this week spoke with Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) to urge her not to run for Senate. Maloney has been making initial moves toward challenging Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) in the 2010 Democratic primary, hiring public relations strategists and fundraisers in both Washington and New York. It would be a primary national Democrats had hoped to avoid. Earlier this week, Biden sat down with Maloney in New York City and urged her not to run, according to a senior White House official. 'We've made it clear we're behind Sen. Gillibrand,' the official said. Biden visited the Big Apple on Monday and Tuesday, hosting a fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee on Monday night and events on the economic recovery package Tuesday. Later Tuesday, Biden attended New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine's (D) campaign kickoff. Even a phone call with the vice president may not be enough to sway Maloney; she is among the several members of New York City's congressional delegation who were upset that Gillibrand won appointment to fill Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's Senate seat, particularly given Gillibrand's more centrist leanings on issues like immigration and gun rights." (TheHill)

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