Monday, December 19, 2005

Never Underestimate the Power of John Dingell


(image via autonews)

John Dingell is a tough sumbich; he has "rib-busting ox-strength." On the McLaughlin Group, goldenboy West Wing Executive Producer Lawrence O'Donnell made it known that when he worked on the Hill, people gave Dingell a "wide berth." Meat-and-potatoes loving paleoconservative pitbull pundit Pat Buchanan appreciatively barked, "yup."

That's juice!

In the seemingly endless array of tributes to the astonishing staying power -- 50 years -- of Congressman Dingell, we get this, from Washington Whispers (link via wonkette):

"Rep. John Dingell isn't just the third-longest-serving House member ever, passing the 50-year mark last week at a Hill lunch to celebrate his 1955 election to replace his father. He's also one of the few who can break up the dreadful bureaucracy-speak with folksy sayings like 'That's about as useful as side pockets on a cow' and 'Madder than a boiled owl.' Dingell, 79, tells our congressional correspondent Danielle Knight that the use of 'Dingellisms' goes back to his father. 'I learned a lot from my dad,' he says. 'Dad was a very colorful fella.'Let's be clear: Dingellisms are not like 'Dingellgrams,' the famously harsh, sometimes belligerent notes to agencies the congressman is angry with. Instead, Dingellisms are quirky, off-the-cuff comments that are rich with meaning. Take the one that sizes up bipartisanship: 'My pappy used to say,' explains Dingell, that 'when they say they want to be bipartisan, it means they don't have the votes.'"

And he throws down a little "Dingle Bells" Christmas floetry (here). You see, our definition of Dingellism would have been entirely porny. (WashingtonWhispers)

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