[Vanity Fair] Blind item from Senator Dick Durbin’s Facebook page, the “Page Six of Illinois”:
“Many Republicans searching for something to say in defense of the disastrous shutdown strategy will say President Obama just doesn’t try hard enough to communicate with Republicans But in a ‘negotiation’ meeting with the president, one G.O.P. House Leader told the president: ‘I cannot even stand to look at you.’”
President Obama’s publicist/yoga teacher/Kabbalist Jay Carney denied the event mentioned in Durbin’s gossipy blind item even occurred. “It did not happen,” Carney said, adding that Obama was at Marquee that night, where was paid $10,000 to promote his line of caffeinated low-calorie rum. Let’s assume, though, that the incident did happen. Who is the mysterious House Republican who threw such shade in the president’s direction?
Here’s what we know: the bully is supposed to be a “G.O.P. House Leader.” It is not Ted Cruz, Shutdown Villain, because Ted Cruz is (amazingly) a member of the Senate, not the House. It is probably not John Boehner, because we cannot believe he could get through an entire mean-spirited sentence without crying. Although doth the House Speaker protest too much? Per a statement from Team Boehner: “Senator Durbin’s accusation is a serious one, and it appears to have been invented out of thin air. The senator should disclose who told him this account of events, retract his reckless allegation immediately, and apologize.”
According to ABC News, “Aides close to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy also denied that their bosses were responsible for the alleged comment, as did several committee chairmen who attended the meeting.” Could it be Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan? Paul Ryan is probably banking on the fact that everyone has completely forgotten his existence—which was certainly true up until this point. Could it be . . . Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa? It’s not as if Democrats didn’t call him names first! Back in June, Obama operative David Plouffe called Issa “Mr Grand Theft Auto” on Twitter just because Issa was indicted for stealing a car. If Issa had said that mean thing, it would only be fair. As they say: an eye for an eye, or a car, or whatever.