The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Early Start for #UnsustaintableBarTab at the #NRISummit: Beer and Loathing

Posted on | January 25, 2013 | 40 Comments

Rich Lowry gives a video interview at the NRI Summit

No sooner had I walked into the lobby of the Omni Shoreham Hotel than I was accosted by John LaRosa, Republican campaign consultant and originator of the #UnsustainableBarTab. “What? Are you stalking me?” LaRosa said. “Did you follow me from the airport?”

We immediately went to the room where his fellow consultant Brad Marston was waiting. We then headed back down to the smoking area, on the way encountering National Review reporter Rob Costa, who’s prepared for the riot I’ve been trying to incite at this weekend’s summit. Costa’s not a smoker, so we bid him adieu and headed out to the front of the hotel where the snow was being whipped around by a cold wind.

“Hey, I just came from Boston,” Marston said. “This is balmy.”

We checked in and got our credentials, then went to the restaurant for a late lunch/early happy hour. While we waited for our sandwiches to arrive, National Review‘s Kevin Williamson walked in and was invited to join us. We started telling tales of the past campaign, including hilarious anecdotes about Rick Perry, Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich that can only be repeated off the record, and then only if someone else is picking up the tab — which John and Brad were, of course: “Media relations” being a legitimate tax-deductible business expense.

We adjourned the convocation and I headed down to the ballroom where some 700 were gathered for the Summit. Ran into Joe Schoffstall, Bruce Carroll and Stephen Gutowski, all of whom are Rising New Media Superstars (and now owe me beers for the shout-out).

The first Controversial Moment of the evening occurred early:

What? Fawning praise for the loser? Is this what we’ve come down to? Praising the “splendid candidate” who lost? Well, I needed a smoke after that, and on my way back down, I ran into my friend Orit Sklar and got into a conversation about the retirement of Saxby Chambliss (for which Ali Akbar deserves much credit) and the likelihood of a multi-candidate primary. Tom Price will almost certainly run for the seat in 2014, but . . .

Well, obviously, this was all strictly off-the-record and not for attribution — just two friends talking privately. Hey, did I mention that some of my friends are Republican campaign consultants?


  • rosalie

    “Praising the “splendid candidate” who lost? Well, I needed a smoke after that”. I’d need a drink.

  • Shawn Gillogly

    Praising the ‘splendid candidate’ who lost because he played prevent defense with the score tied. Doesn’t one have to be competent to be splendid?

    And good riddance Saxby. I love the AP quoting the Dims as saying they have ‘their best chance at a pickup’ because of Georgia’s “Changing Demographics.” I laugh. Let’s see, despite 122,000 missing votes who would have went GOP by ~65%, Obama still lost by a healthy margin.

    What praytell, do they *really* think is going to happen when poll watchers who actually ‘care’ are stationed this time?

  • K-Bob

    I can see parsing it fine enough to call the Romney Campaign an excellent campaign. The only real problem was that he wasn’t the right candidate.

    As I’ve written several times now: if the right guy had been the candidate, with that rapid-response, good press communication, aggressive campaign style, great event prep campaign, Obama would have been kicked to the curb.

    It takes the right guy AND the right campaign. Romney was NOT the right guy.

  • Quartermaster

    I haven’t looked yet, so just in case no one has said it yet, Rich Lowry is a coward.

    Now I’ll go down and see if Belvedere beat me here.

  • Quartermaster

    Amen on Chambliss kicking himself to the curb. Good riddance to RINO. Now if only we can get RSM’s distant cousin set on the same path along with the twink from SC.

  • Christy Waters

    Enjoy the #unsustainablebartab, don’t forget to fill the sarcasm deficit, and tell John and Brad that the bail is already covered. LOL! #TinFoilTreasury

  • richard mcenroe

    “Hey, did I mention that some of my friends are Republican campaign consultants?”

    Some of my friends are brothel bartenders and piano players but I don’t advertise it.

  • K-Bob

    I was thinking about it. Does that count?

  • K-Bob

    spleen dead candidate

    s’plain dat candidate

    spine dread candidate

    ‘sploded candidate

  • K-Bob

    Pikers. They need to go for #UnprecidentedBarTab.

  • Colonel Haiku

    Hey, Mr. McCain… instead of finding fault with the imperfect candidate we had, how about putting the blame where it really belongs… the millions of shat-for-brains “true conservatives” who chose to sit on their thumbs instead of casting their votes for the imperfect candidate we had. Perfect is the enemy of good, and those who didn’t vote only need to look in the mirror to glimpse the true culprits.

    Apparently 0bama was the “right candidate”, since he won. I took the day of November 6, 2012 off of work, so that I could drive older Republican voters to the polls. How many who post comments here made an effort? Just sayin’…

  • Adobe_Walls

    Any organization, movement or event wherein Joe Scarboro is or has the answers or even the questions for that matter, is doomed.

  • rmnixondeceased

    Heh. Miss me yet?

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    You can never go wrong in following Bob Belvedere’s lead.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    The trouble was neither was Gingrich, Santorum, Perry, Cain, etc.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Not if it is an organization of how to spin a punditry career at MSNBC after you are caught in an affair and your intern is found dead in your congressional office.

  • Wombat_socho

    You must be new here, otherwise you’d be aware that a lot of us spent considerable time and effort working on the Romney campaign, among others. LURK MOAR.

  • Colonel Haiku

    1) Yes, relatively new to posting here and 2) one would never know there were Romney supporters/genuine campaign workers here, given the tone and counter-productive poor mouthing.

  • JeffWeimer

    We didn’t like him in the first place, but did our duty (unlike may non-conservatives in a similar situation) and tried to push him across the finish line.

  • McGehee

    I’d advertise them sooner than the party pukes.

  • Mitt Romney

    Thanks for having my back.

  • Mitt Romney

    The fault does not lie with TOM.

  • Colonel Haiku

    How’s that obama workin’ out for all yezzz?

  • Colonel Haiku

    if i had a dog
    he would look just like the dog
    that 0bama ate

  • Andrew Patrick

    Let me see if I can follow the logic: pointing out the mistakes of a losing candidate is exactly the same as enjoying his loss.

    Hi, every post on Redstate two months ago.

  • Colonel Haiku

    Let’s see if I can assist… there’s no denying mistakes were made, but where were the “conservative” voters? They pulled a disappearing act… no show… why did they find another disastrous 4 years of 0bamaoism preferable to a Romney-Ryan administration?

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  • Quartermaster

    Nope. Just the quality of the candidate.

  • Quartermaster

    Given Mitten’s behavior as MassGov, it’s soprta hard to tell much of a difference between Mittens and Zer0. You may complain otherwise, but the record is one wall you simply can’t climb.

    I voted for the man, but I really had to pinch my nose shut when I went to the polls.

  • Bob Belvedere

    Well, ya know… Rich Lowry Is A Coward [apologies: I was at a multi-state firearms certification course with Mrs. B. all day].

  • Bob Belvedere

    Thanks for not letting down the side whilst I was otherwise occupado.

  • Bob Belvedere

    Me too.

  • Bob Belvedere

    Acid flashbacks still plaguing you, eh.

  • Bob Belvedere

    We should have tried to protect your balls instead.

  • Bob Belvedere

    Yes. At least you could be pressured to do the right thing….BTW: How’s Bebe doing?

  • K-Bob

    Anything really out of whack with reality sets them off!

  • K-Bob

    Heh. Glad you’re back. I’ll be in programmer hell for several days.

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  • Scott Osborn

    Friends back east have all the fun and all I get is an ol’ blogtalk show! You guys having too much fun!

  • rmnixondeceased

    Mr. Rebozo spends his days pickled in the Florida sun. Literally, he looks like a piece of tanned hide.