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The nine-term Democratic Representative and former Agriculture secretary “will not have the opportunities to do some of the things that a Republican could have done,” said one Republican aide. “It does nothing to help their interests on the Hill.”
However, the effort by Congressional Republicans to place more of their colleagues on K Street could be undermined by Republicans themselves.
Three Senate Republicans told MPAA officials that they supported Glickman for the job, which is expected to pay more than a million dollars a year.
“I helped him get the job,” boasted Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), chairman of the Judiciary Committee, which oversees the most issues relating to the movie industry.
Before Glickman was hired July 1, MPAA officials called Hatch to ask if he could weigh in on the two finalists: Glickman and former Pentagon spokeswoman Victoria Clarke, a Republican.
“I recommended both of them,” Hatch said. “I get along well with Dan.”
In addition, the two Republican Senators from Glickman’s home state of Kansas also recommended him for the job.
Sens. Pat Roberts and Sam Brownback each said they spoke well of Glickman in interviews with representatives of Spencer Stuart, the headhunting firm that selected the new MPAA chief.
Roberts said he was “supportive” of his former colleague and found him to be a fast learner when Glickman arrived in Washington in the 1970s.
“When he first got to Congress, he said he didn’t know how to pull and plow,” joked Roberts, who served as chairman of the House Agriculture Committee when Glickman was Agriculture secretary. “He’s a very quick study. He’ll do fine.”
Brownback, a top Hollywood critic, said he thought Glickman could help convey to the industry “that it should be more responsible for its power.”
Brownback, who met Glickman when the Republican Senator was involved in campus government at Kansas State University and Glickman was on Capitol Hill, said he “told people [at the MPAA search committee] that he didn’t want too good a recommendation from me — I thought that would hurt him more than help him.”