Fibber McGee’s Closet

My mother used to call one of the closets in our home "Fibber McGee’s Closet" — (based on the old radio show) — and that’s what I’ll call this post because it’s got a little about a lot of marginally-interesting stuff I’ve collected to blog about in the past couple of months…

1.  At last Friday’s special session, Ed Fallon looked a bit like Al Gore, post-Bush v. Gore days.  Fallon’s grown a beard.  He was still sporting a coat and tie, though.  No word on where the sweatshirt with the Iowa postage stamp emblazoned on the front went (Fallon wore the sweatshirt to Vilsack’s first inaugural).

2.  Vice President Dick Cheney knows how to pronounce David Roederer’s last name (ROH-der-er).  Roederer was the Bush/Cheney Iowa campaign chair in 2004.  Roederer served as the master of ceremonies at the Lamberti fundraising luncheon in Des Moines yesterday.  Roederer’s dry wit was a bit wasted on the crowd, but reporters did chuckle at some of his asides.  He also told us there were 2721 hours left until the election — or 3 months, 2 days and 9 hours.  He said this at about 11:30 a.m. central time on Monday, so calibrate your election countdown clocks accordingly.

3.  American Prospect wrote a fairly lengthy article on Governor Tom Vilsack’s pitch to get the DLC and the nation’s labor movement to bury the hatchet.  The opening line was amusing to Iowa political reporters who’ve tried without success to get the Vilsackers to release more details about the governor’s activities and travels in the past seven-and-a-half years.  Lede:  "On April 3 at an unpublicized strategy meeting…" 

4.  Vilsack went to Major League Baseball’s Home Run Derby during the All-Star break.  (Referencing #3 — You wouldn’t know it from any of the schedules released by the governor’s office or his PAC.)  Vilsack is a huge baseball fan and has said being the League’s commissioner would be a dream job.  Vilsack grew up in Pittsburg and is a Pirates fan, so there’s no danger he’ll be angling for tickets to the World Series to see his team anytime soon. (You may recall he got tickets to go to the Super Bowl to watch the Steelers.)

5.  Vilsack will be in Denver this weekend to attend DLC events. South Carolina hosts the upcoming NGA meeting — one-stop-shopping for the presidential hopefuls like Vilsack, just like last year’s NGA meeting in Des Moines, eh?      

6.  The Oprah for President folks need a better cartoon-likeness of Oprah for their materials which arrived in the newsroom sometime in December.  The guy behind it all is from Kansas City, Missouri, and offered "rides in the ‘Oprahmobile’" — upon request. 

7.  One of the Democratic Party activists I ran into in New Hampshire while I was following Vilsack was prepared for media interviews.  Diane Swasey proffers business cards that show she’s Manchester Ward 3 Chairwoman.  It lists not only her phone number but her email address.  Swasey, who is 73, is following all the New Hampshire political coverage on-line, by the way, and had read the Union Leader’s story about Vilsack’s morning appearance before she arrived for a late afternoon do featuring Vilsack as keynote speaker.  She was none-too-happy about Vilsack’s stance on New Hampshire’s First-In-The-Nation status.  Note to Vilsack:  she’s signed on to help Edwards and Warner already, so her dance card’s full.

8.  Two word mantras often work their way into Vilsack’s vernacular.  If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard him say "important and necessary" or "rigorous and relevant" I could buy a ticket to "Trinidad and Tobago" or maybe find out what happened to "Peaches and Herb."

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.