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Heard on the Hill: Pearls Before Swine

• Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) on a college- cost bill: “You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig.”

And HOH’s personal favorite:

• Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) on a human rights commission: “Ambassador [John] Bolton stated at the creation of the new council, ‘We want a butterfly. We’re not going to put lipstick on a caterpillar and declare it a success.’”

A Different Kind of Pig. Sen. Elizabeth Dole has some very powerful lawyers around town absolutely mortified. The North Carolina Republican told an anecdote on Wednesday while accepting an award from Working Mother Media about a sexist — and as-yet unnamed — former classmate.

Dole says that on her first day of classes at Harvard Law School (in the early 1960s), a male student approached her. “What are you doing, Elizabeth?” the chauvinistic fellow asked, presuming that the young lady wasn’t planning a career in public life but perhaps just trying to land a husband with prospects. “Don’t you know that there are men who would give their right arm to be here? Men who will actually use their legal education?”

Dole says the guy from the embarrassing (for him!) story is now a prominent lawyer in Washington and the head of a big firm. And, just to make him squirm, she says, she loves to tell the story in front of him.

But the anecdote apparently has other attorneys around town who were also Dole’s classmates in a twist: Dole says she’s gotten calls from other lawyers who feared they might be the John Doe of the story. “They say, ‘Please tell me I’m not the one,’” the Senator told the crowd.

And Dole revealed another tidbit from her Boston days: She says she met former Colorado Rep. Pat Schroeder (D) (who was in the audience) at Harvard Law, when Dole’s car rolled down a hill and hit Schroeder’s.

Talk about meeting cute.

Senatorial Smooch. Lucky Rep. James Oberstar. The House Transportation and Infrastructure chairman got a super-warm welcome from fellow Minnesota Democrat Sen. Amy Klobuchar on Wednesday, when Oberstar was testifying before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, the California Democrat who chairs that committee, announced from the dais that it was Oberstar’s birthday and led a polite round of applause for the newly minted 74-year-old. But Klobuchar, who was sitting next to Oberstar at the witness table, went further in her birthday well-wishing. She landed a kiss on the birthday boy’s cheek.

Boxer seemed to approve of the gesture. “Oh, a birthday kiss!” she noted. “Well, you deserve it.”

Paul’s United Way. Who says party unity is on the wane?

While Republicans and Democrats continue to butt heads over basically everything, the various third-party presidential candidates are putting up a united front, all at the urging of Rep. Ron Paul. At the National Press Club on Wednesday, the Texas Republican brought together Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney, Constitution Party candidate Chuck Baldwin and Independent candidate Ralph Nader in an effort to convince Americans to vote outside the box this fall.

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