People Who Need People

Posted June 29, 2005 at 6:27pm

According to People magazine, Washington political consultants can be sexy, too.

The June 27 edition of the pop culture staple lists Winston Bao Lord, a former Stevens Reed Curcio and Potholm vice president, as one of its 50 hottest bachelors.

The 37-year-old Lord now heads up the Washington Baseball Club, which pushed Major League Baseball to move the Montreal Expos to D.C. to become the Nationals.

Listed along with actors, screenwriters and other Hollywood glitterati, Lord is more than just eye candy. He is the son of author Bette Bao Lord and former ambassador to China Winston Lord. He describes himself in the list’s “on the rise” section as “loyal, cheesy” and “outdoorsy.”

“I know how to identify poison ivy,” he told the magazine. “By trial and error, anyway, so I just make sure I go first.”

This is not the first time Lord’s star has been listed as “rising.” When he worked for the GOP firm, he made Campaigns and Elections magazine’s list of up-and-coming consultants.

Lest any of this goes to his head, his former SRCP colleagues will be sure to bring Lord back down to earth.

“We always told Winston that he had a face for radio,” Erik Potholm, a Stevens Reed partner, joked.

In an interview, the bachelor himself said, “Obviously it’s flattering but it’s not too hard to beat out all those guys over at the IRS.”

The McLaughlin Group. John McLaughlin, head of McLaughlin and Associates, has signed up GOP challenger clients in Texas and New York.

The pollster is working with Texas Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn, who is challenging Gov. Rick Perry in next year’s Republican primary for governor, and former Yonkers Mayor John Spencer, who is seeking the Republican nod to contest Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) next year.

McLaughlin’s clients include Virginia Senator and presidential aspirant George Allen. He has also polled for beleaguered California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) and Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.).

New Alliance. The law firm Covington and Burling and the public affairs shop Democracy, Data and Communications have created an alliance to help capture more of the political action committee market.

The firms will offer “joint, high-level strategic counsel for responding to challenges associated with PAC compliance and fundraising,” according to a news release announcing the partnership. The new team will “provide cutting-edge

fundraising techniques and complementary technologies, while emphasizing careful compliance with the increasingly complex federal, state and local elections laws.”

Can’t Tell the Players Without a Scorecard. The Rhode Island Democratic Senate primary seems to be all about poaching right now.

The camps of Rhode Island Secretary of State Matt Brown and former state Attorney General Sheldon Whitehouse have been trading barbs, and supporters, in the Web logs and via e-mail.

The Rhode Island Future blog noted that Brown’s former campaign treasurer, Tomas Ramirez, now “appears on the latest Whitehouse fundraising ticket as a member of the Whitehouse host committee.”

The blog lists six other local activists or officials as defectors from Brown to Whitehouse.

Brown’s camp fought back via the Hotline on Wednesday, disclosing that Jonathan Lavine, who worked on the Kerry-Edwards campaign, is a former Whitehouse supporter now serving as Brown’s national finance chairman. Furthermore, Don Sweitzer, Michael Perik and Pablo Rodriguez — all prominent Rhode Island Democrats — switched allegiances to Brown as well, the Hotline reported.

Brown backers may have thought they had more ammunition in a recent Whitehouse fundraising letter that notes: “We are particularly proud to have Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) as a co-chair[man] of the campaign.”

Did that mean that Rep. James Langevin (D-R.I.), the other co-chairman, had defected?

Whitehouse spokesman Mike Guilfoyle explained that the letter was sent specifically to Kennedy supporters, as the senior member of the Ocean State’s House delegation was kind enough to share his donor list with Whitehouse. Whitehouse is extremely proud to have both Congressmen behind him, Guilfoyle added.

Amid all the sniping, few may have noticed that Whitehouse recently hired a campaign manager.

Mindy Meyers, who previously served then-Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) as political director of his leadership political action committee, DASHPAC, came on board earlier this month. Meyers also worked on the Gore-Lieberman 2000 presidential campaign and in then-President Bill Clinton’s legislative affairs office.

Tony Award. The League of Conservation Voters has a new political director. Tony Massaro takes the fancy title of senior vice president for political affairs and public education.

Massaro brings his cowboy boots to the national environmental political group from the Colorado LCV, where he served as executive director. There, he helped a coalition of environmental and liberal groups give Democrats unprecedented victories in 2004.

Massaro replaces Mark Longebaugh, the LCV’s former political director who left the group after the 2004 election to hang his shingle as a political consultant.

In Colorado, Massaro has been replaced as executive director by Christopher Mann, who has worked on several campaigns in the mountain West and was recently associate director of the Public Finance Program at the Trust for Public Land.

Full Deck of Cardins. Rep. Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.) has begun to assemble a top-tier team of consultants for his 2006 Senate bid.

Veteran Democratic pollster Harrison Hickman of the Global Strategy Group will handle polling. Martin Hamburger and his firm, Laguens Hamburger Strategies, will take on media consulting duties. Both are veterans of previous Cardin campaigns.

Cardin has also brought on two fundraising consultants: Lori Krieloff, a former top fundraiser at the Democratic National Committee who recently started her own firm, LBK Consulting, and Tina Stoll, who recently worked in Maryland for Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D) and is also handling fundraising for Sen. Maria Cantwell’s (D-Wash.) re-election next year.

Wayne Rogers, a former chairman of the Maryland Democratic Party who headed the presidential campaign of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) in the Free State last year, will be Cardin’s finance chairman. Rogers is a wealthy high-tech and energy company executive.

For Pete’s Sake. Utah Democratic Senate candidate Pete Ashdown has hired a campaign manager.

Carla Wiese, a former state coordinator for the Democratic National Committee, has signed on with the Internet company CEO, according to a recent posting on his campaign Web site.

Ashdown, who runs the Utah-based Internet service provider XMission, hopes to knock off five-term Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) next year.

Perlmutter’s Pearls. Former state Sen. Ed Perlmutter, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for Colorado’s 7th district, has begun putting his campaign team together.

Jerry Pifer was named campaign coordinator, Karen Rokala will serve as finance director, Barb Straw was tapped as compliance director, Pam Feely was named treasurer and Bill Holen and Jo Ann Herrick will coordinate volunteer events.

Pifer previously worked on Kerry’s (D-Mass.) presidential campaign in Colorado. Rokala was boards and commissions director to then-Gov. Roy Romer (D), and Straw worked on the successful 2004 campaign of Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.).

Win’s Winners. Arkansas Lt. Gov. Win Rockefeller (R) has assembled an impressive and extensive team of political consultants for his bid to succeed Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) next year.

Six veteran consultants — Richard Bearden of Little Rock-based Impact Management Group Inc.; Richard Dresner; Russ Schriefer, formerly of Maverick Media; Greg Strimple, a partner with Mercury Public Affairs; Michael McSherry, a vice president with that firm; and Kevin Shuvalov, a partner with Olsen and Shuvalov — have all signed on with Rockefeller.

Oh Darling. Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley (D) has added Scott Darling to his stable of fundraisers for his 2006 Maryland gubernatorial bid.

Darling, who worked for Virginia Gov. Mark Warner (D) and then-Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.), will share fundraising responsibilities with Baltimore-based Colleen Martin Lauer, The Washington Post reported recently.

O’Malley faces Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan in the Democratic primary in his quest to unseat Gov. Robert Ehrlich (R).

A Job That’s Not for the Meek(s). Crain’s New York Business reported this week that Patrick Jenkins, a top aide to Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) in the Congressman’s Queens district office, is leaving Meeks’ staff to become deputy campaign manager for New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer (D), who is running for governor next year.

Exes and Ohs. Ex-Montana Lt. Gov. Karl Ohs was elected chairman of the state Republican Party earlier this month. Ohs beat out Billings GOP activist Greg Franks to win the two-year term.

Blood Money. The Washington state Republican Party forked over $15,000 to its Democratic counterpart to offset legal costs incurred as part of the GOP’s unsuccessful challenge to last year’s gubernatorial election, The Seattle Times reported this week.

On behalf of their candidate, Dino Rossi, Republicans sued to overturn the Nov. 2 election of Christine Gregoire (D), who became governor after a hand counting of ballots during the third recount.

A Washington judge recently upheld Gregoire’s election, and the Republicans had to pay some of the Democrats’ court costs for bringing forth the losing suit.

Josh Kurtz contributed to this report