Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., was set to retire after his fifth term expired next year. But the oldest member of the US Senate — and its last World War II veteran — died today, potentially throwing the race to replace him into high gear if a special election is called. Newark Mayor Cory Booker wants to fill that suddenly vacant seat, and he’s coming to town for a June 10 fundraiser with young Hollywood at the London West Hollywood. Booker’s not the only Eastern Seaboard Democrat with Senate hopes heading west with hat in hand: Rep Ed Markey, D-Mass. – who’s tuned in to Hollywood via his role on the House telecommunications subcommittee — has his eye on the Bay State seat vacated by newly minted Secretary of State John Kerry, and he’s got a fundraiser set for Sunday at Haim and Cheryl Saban’s house. Democratic industry types might develop a blister from reaching for their wallets in the next several days: President Obama will be the star attraction at a fundraiser Friday at Peter Chernin’s place.
President Barack Obama and outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sat down together for an interview that will air Sunday on CBS’ 60 Minutes. It was their first joint interview and the president’s first sit-down with anyone other than First Lady Michelle Obama. The interview follows Clinton’s grilling in …
UPDATE, 6:38 PM: The Office of the Vice-President tonight released a photo of the two and a half hour meeting Thursday at the White House between representatives from the entertainment industry and the VP on gun violence.
This would be just the third veto Barack Obama has made, but the White House says today that he’ll go there if the Senate on Thursday endorses a bill to upend the FCC’s net neutrality rules. The resolution to scrap the regulations — which are due to take effect on November 20 — is similar to one that the House passed in April. The Senate vote could be close: Texas Republican Kay Bailey Hutchinson’s bill has 42 co-sponsors. Supporters include Maine Republican Olympia Snowe, who favors net neutrality but says the issue should be decided by Congress — not the FCC. In today’s “Statement of Administration Policy,” the White House says that “the open Internet enables entrepreneurs to create new services without fear of undue discrimination by network providers.” For example, Comcast wouldn’t be able to favor transmissions over its broadband lines for a service it likes, such as Hulu, over those of a rival such as Netflix. The administration says that disapproval of net neutrality would “threaten the very foundations of innovation in the Internet economy and the democratic spirit that has made the Internet a force for social progress around the world.” If the Senate passes the bill, then the administration statement says “his senior advisers would recommend that he veto the Resolution.”
2ND UPDATE, 12:25 AM: First there was the $35,800-per-person fundraising dinner tonight with Will Smith hosted by his Overbrook Entertainment producing partner and manager James Lassiter. Then President Obama headed over to the home of Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith for a somewhat lower-key event aimed at Latino supporters. He was introduced by Eva Longoria who said Obama “knows he’s the president of all Americans” and that “we thank you for everything you’re doing.” Obama leaves town after Tuesday’s Jay Leno taping.
UPDATE (correcting misidentification), 8:01 p.m.: This evening’s Los Angeles traffic snarl at rush hour was just that much worse because President Barack Obama arrived at LAX on board Air Force One at 4:30 PM. He’s attending two Hollywood political fundraisers for the Democratic Party tonight, first at producer James Lassiter’s mansion and then Melanie Griffith’s and Antonio Banderas’ home. Potus will be making a Tonight Show appearance with Jay Leno tomorrow before jetting out of town. According to the White House pool report, Obama first helicoptered to a landing zone in Brentwood and the motorcade made an “off-the-record” visit to Roscoe’s chicken and waffle house. The president ordered at the counter for himself (and nearby aides) the No. 9 “Country Boy” – 3 wings with choice of waffle, potato salad or French fries ($8.90). He then started chatting with diners. I say who cares if you like Obama’s politics or not: he’s got good taste when it comes to LA’s favorite eats.
Then the motorcade traveled to Hancock Park for the first fundraiser hosted by Lassiter, who is Will Smith’s production partner in Overbrook Entertainment which manages the entire Pinkett-Smith family. Here is the pool report written by the Los Angeles Times‘ Peter Nicholas:
Ad sales are improving for cable but they may not pop as much as many in the industry had hoped, according to information presented at this morning’s opening session of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association’s annual trade show. ”The jury’s still out on what the economic outlook will be in the second half of the year,” Horizon Media CEO Bill Koenigsberg said. Although cable execs say that unit prices for their upfront sales are running about 11% higher than last year, Koenigsberg says “clients now are cautious. I don’t think the barometer of the upfront is a forecast for the future.” Initiative’s Tim Spengler added that he’s “cautiously optimistic” and has seen “no signs of a pullback yet.” The ad execs said that clients may warm to cable once they have a clearer sense of how many people watch their spots, what screens they they watch them on, and how viewers respond to the commercials. “Measurement is not keeping up with the technology,” Mediavest’s Bill Tucker said. “Getting data across screens is the new frontier, and we’re not there yet.” Koenigsberg says that in about six months the industry should have “a true consistent measurement that we can trade on.”
The advertisers followed a panel about the 2012 election on which President Obama political adviser David Axelrod said that broadcasters, especially local TV stations, will continue to receive the lion’s share of campaign ad dollars.
When President Barack Obama arrived at the Sony Pictures lot in April for a Democratic National Committee fundraiser, most studio employees left early and traffic was tricky. Tonight, it’s the First Lady’s turn. Michelle Obama will attend a fundraiser …
With the economy still sputtering, his approval ratings slipping and the mid-term elections looming, President Barack Obama certainly has enough on his plate. But he surprisingly found time to appear on the December 8 episode of Discovery Channel’s series Mythbusters. In the episode, Archimedes Solar Ray, Obama challenges hosts Adam Savage …