Heard on the Hill: McMahon Is Gaga for Donations

Posted June 22, 2010 at 6:25pm

Lady Gaga has little in common with Members of Congress: She lives to offend, eschews pants and has no problem with public intoxication. So when the “Alejandro” singer announced she would perform Sept. 7 at the Verizon Center, HOH wondered whether any lawmakers would be bold enough to hold fundraisers at the sure-to-be-racy concert.

After all, most major musical acts that perform in Washington, even the most cringe-inducing ones, draw political fundraising events. House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) once famously held a fundraiser at a Britney Spears show at the Verizon Center.

And now we have our answer: The brave Rep. Michael McMahon (D-N.Y.) is indeed holding a hat-passing event during Gaga’s Monster Ball Tour appearance. And at these prices, the show better live up to the scandalous hype. Tickets (seating is in a “private suite”) are $2,400 for an individual and $2,500 for a political action committee.

McMahon’s campaign communications director, Jen Nelson, indicated that the Congressman (or his staffers, at least) has a good working knowledge of Gaga’s hits.

“The Congressman will have his ‘Poker Face’ on to deal with the ‘Paparazzi,'” she tells HOH. He “hopes his supporters don’t hang up on him when he calls them on the ‘Telephone’ but instead join him to ‘Just Dance’ at the event.”

Hey, Hey, We’re the Members, and People Say We Monkey Around

Three Members of Congress no longer need to be daydream believers, at least when it comes to their dreams of musical stardom — they’ll perform with a chart-topper tonight at the Capitol Visitor Center.

OK, so it’s not Madison Square Garden, and we aren’t talking the Rolling Stones. But it’s still pretty cool.

Micky Dolenz, who played drums and sang vocals for the 1960s made-for-television band the Monkees, is scheduled to lobby on Capitol Hill today for the Performance Rights Act, legislation that would require radio stations to compensate artists whenever their songs are played on air.

Dolenz also will perform at an evening reception sponsored by the musicFirst Coalition, accompanied by Rep. Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) on guitar, Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) on drums and Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) on keyboard.

Rooney is experienced on the drums, having played in bands while in high school, college and the Army, a spokesman tells HOH.

Rooney’s favorite hit by the Monkees is “(I’m Not Your) Stepping Stone,” says spokesman Mike Mahaffey, adding that Rooney is gearing up to perform with one of the first-ever pop stars.

“We caught him practicing on his desk the other day between meetings,” Mahaffey jokes.

Flight Delay Causes a Senate Fashion Folly

When Sen. Mark Udall showed up in the Senate for evening votes Monday, the Colorado Democrat wasn’t dressed in the usual suit-and-tie combo favored by most Senators. Rather, an HOH spy eyed him wearing a navy blue sportcoat paired with … jeans.

Gasp! While not specifically banned under Senate rules, jeans are generally considered a fashion no-no on Capitol Hill, at least while Congress is in session.

But don’t worry, Senatorial fashion police: Udall didn’t intend to push the envelope.

Udall merely ran into scheduling difficulties when his flight to D.C. was delayed.

While he managed to rush from the airport to the Senate floor just in time for votes, he didn’t have time to change, a spokeswoman tells HOH.

Udall did check with the Senate Cloakroom to make sure his outfit was OK, the spokeswoman notes.

Overheard on the Hill

“Pigs have officially flown …”

— The caption accompanying a video clip from “The Rachel Maddow Show” posted to Rep. Aaron Schock’s YouTube page Tuesday. Maddow and the Illinois Republican got into a heated argument when both appeared on “Meet the Press” in February, but Maddow praised Schock’s oil safety legislation on her Monday program.

Submit your hot tips, juicy gossip or comments here.

Can’t get enough HOH? Get a midday dose of fun and gossip with HOH’s One-Minute Recess, delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here — because everyone deserves more recess.