Wonkette Party Crash: MSNBC/NJ At the Watergate
The National Journal Group throws a mean party, so when they invited us to celebrate their blessed gay marriage to MSNBC (oh, we only give it 'til November -- you know how those types are), we put on a tie and everything and cabbed it to the Watergate. The cabbie correctly pegged us as a "blogger," picked up two well-dressed Republican-looking additional fares at a Georgetown hotel, and told them we were "a liberal Democratic tree-lover vegetarian" as they uncomfortably and politely laughed and silently pleaded to make it to Sequoia before we said something leftist.
Oh, right, the party! Learn all about it, after the jump.
The occasion: MSNBC is taking all of Hotline and National Journal's expertise and beefing up their website. Pretty much. No, it's really exciting! They have a map!
The food: Delicious. Chicken on sticks with delicious sauces, and shot glasses of soup.
The drink: Plentiful.
The venue: National Journal's office at the Watergate. Which is pretty nice. It's got a baby grand piano, for some reason. More on that later, natch.
Liz Gorman, Intrepid Girl Reporter, had homework (no joke), so our pictures are provided courtesy the National Journal Group themselves, via the lovely Katherine Birrow.
We have just told Patrick Gavin our famous "more like Gays and Nays" joke.
We are literally stealing this guest list from Fishbowl DC because that's how we roll and, you know, this is a blog:
Mike Abramowitz, Pat Anastasi, Jim Barnes, Aaron Blake, Robert Bluey, Marian Burros, Peter Canellos, Carl Cannon, Lisa Caruso, Charlie Cook, Helene Cooper, Tom Curry, Julie Davis, John Dickerson, Amy Doolittle, Jennifer Duffy, Sean Federico-O'Murchu, Mike Feldman, Garance Franke-Ruta, Dan Froomkin[! -ed], Garrett Graff, Charlie Green, Mike Grass, Patricia Harrison, Bill Hartnett, Michelle Jaconi, Ann Klenk, Ryan Lizza, Charlie Mahtesian, John McCaslin, Kelly McCormack, Erin McPike, Jonathan Martin, Wendy Melillo, Bob Merry, Paul Mirengoff, Mark Murray, Maura O'Brien, Bob Okun, Alex Pareene, Greg Pierce, Shelby Poduch, Chip Reid, Roxanne Roberts, Laura Rozen, Steve Scully, Alexis Simendinger, Jennifer Sizemore, Randy Stearns, Alexandra Stoddard, Chris Suellentrop, Jason Thompson, Amy Walter, Elizabeth Wilner, Janine Zacharia, Zaidi Huma... and Chuck Todd.
Some additional names are pictured, but there was also Chris Matthews, Dana Milbank, Anne Kornblut, David Gregory, Ana Marie Cox, Norah O'Donnel, and so much more.
We've seen Atlantic president John Fox Sullivan (center) at every single party we've ever covered and we're pretty sure he's one of those guys who goes to think tank events for the free sandwiches. Anyway, here he is with Mary Beth Cahill and Terry McAuliffe.
Man, don't those look delicious/cute? Sadly, Russert and Matthews snagged 'em before we even arrived. Strangely, they didn't eat them, but instead performed two competing and elaborate puppet interviews.
Original Wonkette lied to a couple people about our age, asked Chris Suellentrop how he could possibly walk by her without saying hello, and then promptly walked away to "interview" someone. She claimed to be "working."
It was ok, though, because Suellentrop told us a funny story about appearing on a tv show heatedly debating The Simpsons in a Crossfire-stylee. During said program, he coined the much-needed replacement term for tired old "jumped the shark:" "Fucked by the panda." As in, "Wonkette totally got fucked by the panda when they posted that Cindy Sheehan smear." We hope he doesn't mind that we're stealing his line.
Ana Marie Cox was terrified of putting her jacket down all night because she knew John Dickerson had his eye on it.
Super-producer Tammy Haddad told Examiner columnist Patrick Gavin that Chris Matthews was just as scared of Gavin as Gavin was of Matthews.
Terry and Tim just heard our "Gays and Nays" joke.
Roxanne Roberts went home early to her child, who has apparently been guilt-tripping her something fierce.
Norah O'Donnell desperately looks for an out.
They gave out free copies of The Almanac of American Politics to everyone as they left, which is awesome. Everyone should have one. Here's a paragraph from it:
In June 2005, Congresswoman Katherine Harris, who decided not to run for the Senate in 2004 after consultations with White House strategist Karl Rove, announced she would run against Nelson in 2006. Governor Jeb Bush, probably the strongest possible Republican candidate, has indicated time and again that he is not interested in running. This is likely to be a high-spending race -- Nelson has said he needs to raise $18 million -- and could be one of the most fiercely contested in the 2006 cycle.
The bible of politics, people.
...and finds it with ol' Foxy and Dina Powell.
When we showed up, they were filming Hardball. At the party. Seriously, Matthews, party foul. Leave your work at work. We carefully avoided that half of the room.
David Gregory is pretty sure the bartender is pointing a finger at him.
The ladies can't get enough of the Charlie Cook.
Anyway, the piano. There's a white baby grand just sitting right there, in the office. Or the "employee lounge" or whatever the hell it is. Rec room? After a few too many g&t's, followed by a liberal dose of whiskey, we decided to play said piano. Thus, we can now say we've accomplished our life-long goal of playing "Christmas Card From a Hooker in Minneapolis" at the Watergate.
Chris Matthews performs, for Tammy Haddad and Mark Lucasiewicz, his famous imitation of a hen laying an egg.
After our attempt to lead a drunken singalong failed, Tammy Haddad and NBC News VP in charge of Digital Media Mark Lucasiewicz sat down at the keys and led a much more successful assault on the ears of the poor saps who still seemed to be "working" in the next room. Lucasiewicz is one of those guys who can play anything if you hum a few bars (though his heart belongs to Broadway), so the Haddad-led singalong fared rather well, attracting most of the remains of the party. Songs stuck to classic rock radio hits, and, yes, "Piano Man" was heard. Two drunk guys knew every verse, which was novel at first and quickly became torture.
Frances Townsend, James Kitfield, and Barbara Comstock are partying all night.
Then we went to Cafe Milano for god knows what reason. There were probably lots of bold-faced names there, but it was crowded and loud and we needed to get out ASAP. Haddad lent us her MSNBC town car and we all smoked cigarettes in it.
Joe Trippi and Tim Russert each know that if you ignore William H. Macy, he will eventually get bored and wander off.
Oh, right, this new website: Politics! Powered by MSNBC and National Journal! Coming this fall!
And christ, were we hungover today. Hence the ridiculously late party write-up!