Gossip Roundup: The Oddly Exact Figure Edition

Washington Whispers: Bush, reportedly, on a new CBS drama about the Department of Homeland Security: "Yeah, yeah, it sounds good." Ridge, Schwarzenegger are involved. . . Carville, explaining Clinton's behavior to his daughters, according to Matalin: "Ma'am, I will tell my girls that their daddy had a friend. And his friend did a bad thing. And what you do when you have a friend is you forgive them.". . . Rice2008.com envisions a Rice-Jeb Bush ticket. . . "What a present," said a Bush insider on Kerry's frequent use of Sen. Kennedy; the Senator's support may appear in some Bush ads. . . Kerry and liberal groups have reserved $200,000 in TV spots in NH for the first week in April, narrowing Bush's ad options. . . In a terror drill, Powell becomes president and fires Rumsfeld. [USN&WR]

Out & About: For donations to the Creative Coalition, Ron Reagan, "Apprentice" Kwame Jackson, and others get their choice of gifts. [WP]

Heard on the Hill: National Republican Congressional Committee sends out a fundraising letter signed by Hastert asking, "Should America broaden the war on terrorism into other countries that harbor and aid terrorists such as Thailand, Syria, Somalia, the Philippines etc?" Replied Democratic flak, "House Republicans' foreign policy is apparently getting even more reckless - they've gone from renaming french fries 'freedom fries' to naming Thailand and the Philippines 'terrorist countries.' I guess soon we�ll have to call our Thai food 'pad liberty.'". . . "There are two things I can�t get in Baghdad � Iams and Roll Call," said a former Hill staffer serving in Iraq. . . April Fool's Day press release said Michael Jackson would market legislation with a campaign titled "Indecency: Beat It!". . . Suggestions solicited for HOH's final column. [Roll Call]

Inside the Beltway: Russell Senate Office Building staff can now file claims for up to $4,000 each due to the ricin scare. [WT]

Inside Politics: Dean: "This is Bushgate, which is far more serious than Watergate in many ways because 600 people are dead. . . and countless Iraqis and over 2,000 Americans wounded, many of them permanently maimed. What is going on in this country is this kind of stuff is buried on page 6A, as it was in our local paper here this morning." [WT]

Lloyd Grove's Lowdown: Franken, on video, singing "Go Down, Moses" in the shower. . . Nader, writes Hitchens, offered to "pay me the oddly exact figure of four and a half thousand dollars, and cover any therapy bills I might incur, if I would quit [smoking]. On every occasion that we have met since, he has renewed this offer, adjusted for inflation and other variables." [NYDN]

Rush & Molloy: The Secret Service is having trouble finding a building near Kerry's Boston mansion. . . Streisand is wanted for the Democratic convention. [NYDN]

Cindy Adams: Hillary wants to go back to India "as soon as [Bill] finishes his book which should be sometime between immediately and never." [NYP]


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