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Hellerís staff believed at the time that both parties knew they were joking around and said the conversation appeared genial even after the joke was made. A source familiar with the conversation said it ended with Hellerís chief of staff mentioning their communications director is from Augusta, Ga., and would be happy to help with Chamblissí campaign.
Still, Chambliss was so troubled by the incident that he personally spoke to Heller about it.
Hellerís office said they have been flexible in showing the rest of the suite, but that because of the senatorís schedule, his personal office has been difficult to show. One other office confirmed having difficulty in seeing the Heller space and bizarre behavior by his staffers. But a spokesperson for Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., who recently toured the office space, said there were ďno problems whatsoeverĒ and that it was a positive experience.
Chamblissí office declined to comment for this story. A Rules panel spokesman also declined to comment on the allegations of bullying.
The Senate lottery process usually stretches from the time immediately after an election to the spring of the next Congress. In the 112th Congress, the process lasted until May 1 and there were 35 moves, which is the most in recent memory, according to a Rules Committee source. The average number of moves per Congress is about 20. This year the lottery is on pace to match last yearís schedule as members of the class of 2008 look at office spaces.
For now, however, Heller remains in Russell 361-A.