Sept. 30, 2014 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Heard on the Hill: Bumped From the Hot Seat

One of the few comforts for those embroiled in a Washington scandal is that, before long, someone else will come along with an even juicier story line.

The cable channels will replace the breathless chatter about your misdoings with breathless chatter about someone else’s.

That’s why Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, who had come under scrutiny for his own verbal gaffes, might want to send a dozen roses to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for stealing the spotlight with revelations that the Nevada Democrat made racially tinged remarks about President Barack Obama. The card could read something like this: “Dear Harry, Thanks for having an even bigger mouth than me. XOXO, Mike.”

It’s a familiar pattern. Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) was the subject of all kinds of attention when he admitted on June 16 that he’d had an affair with a staffer. But only days later, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford became the media’s philanderer du jour with even more scandal-icious revelations concerning an Argentinian mistress.

But soon, the affaire de Sanford was just a blip on the cable-news crawl: A day after the beleaguered guv came clean about his adultery, pop icon Michael Jackson died and the media vultures pounced.

After that, it was all M.J., all the time. Sanford who?

And in December, Ensign was back in the cross hairs when the husband of the woman whom he’d cheated with began giving national interviews. About a week later, Ensign no doubt breathed a sigh of relief when reports revealed that Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) had nominated his girlfriend for a plum job.

So for the subject of the next media firestorm: Call your lawyer, then hope for another Balloon Boy.

Hatch Goes Hollywood. Politics aside, the 2000s were good to Sen. Orrin Hatch — his side career as a songwriter often landed him in the movies.

Harper’s Magazine posted a tweet Monday, taken from the October 2002 issue, noting the Utah Republican’s songs were featured in two Hollywood movies in the previous two years. HOH wondered whether the songwriting Senator had more luck getting into the movies during the rest of the aughts.

By our count, Hatch doubled his numbers.

Hatch-written songs were included in at least four Hollywood-produced movies released during the 2000s: “America Rocks,” featured in the 2001 flick “Rat Race”; “Little Angel of Mine,” featured on the soundtrack of the 2002 movie “Stuart Little 2”; “Everyday Heroes,” performed by Brooks and Dunn for the 2002 film “Joshua”; and “Souls Along the Way,” included in the George Clooney-Brad Pitt headlined 2004 box-office smash “Ocean’s Twelve.”

Hatch has earned tens of thousands of dollars in royalties from the songs that he’s written over the years. He tends to stick to patriotic and spiritual themes and is best known for the songs that he’s written about friends such as the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.).

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