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Sex, Awards and Videotape

In their search for hard money, House Republicans truly broke some new ground recently by awarding Harry Weiss, president of Weiss and Associates, their National Leadership Award and appointing him California co-chairman of the Business Advisory Council.

House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) chairs the council, and his signature is on Weiss award, which thanks him for his Republican ideals.

But then theres the obligatory twist: Weiss is the proud owner of a PR firm that represents some of the most prolific, uh, adult

stars in the San Fernando Valley, as well as a few spicy Web sites and video stores. He also founded Nefarious Films, for which Weiss is a producer and director of his own adult flicks. Weiss, whos been in the industry for nine years, has even landed a handful of roles of his own in adult films.

As he told HOH on Friday, Weiss has only had non-sex roles, such as the time he played a judge in a film closely resembling the Larry Flynt case, in which an adult entertainer had to defend himself on First Amendment grounds. The films always need a few non-sex roles, Weiss said, to help move the plot along. Who knew?

A onetime Democrat when he grew up in Union County, N.J., Weiss said he was surprised to find a message on his work phone a month or so ago asking him if hed like to join the Business Advisory Council. The call is in fact a fundraising pitch used by the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Weiss, who labels himself a centrist who didnt vote in 2000 because he hated both President Bush and former Vice President Al Gore, called back, and the Republican telemarketer offered him a spot on the council. They said they considered me a responsible and important part of the business community, he recalled.

I, of course, asked what this was costing me. And they said No cost.

With that, Weiss signed on and the person on the other end then granted him the leadership award and played a recorded greeting from DeLay, the arch-conservative who drove the impeachment of then-President Bill Clinton over his alleged lies about sexual indiscretions.

The GOP operative never actually asked what services Weiss and Associates performed, Weiss said. Like other recipients of the leadership award, the caller did ask Weiss if he wanted to pay a few hundred dollars to have his name included on a GOP advertisement in The New York Times talking up the presidents economic plan. Weiss declined, and the caller said that was fine.

A week or so later he received a letter welcoming me aboard, promising access to key Republicans and inviting him to an NRCC fundraiser with Bush later this year.

Perhaps members of the more conservative wing of the GOP would strive to rescind the award if they knew Weiss clients include actor Lexington Steele, who, according to the Internet Movie Database, boasts of 336 adult film credits since 1997, including, most recently, Bringum Young 10, Cant Get Enough and a whole bunch of unprintable titles.

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