Jewish World Review July 17, 2003 / 17 Tamuz, 5763

Lloyd Grove

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Consumer Reports

Yet another intern scandal; it's her party and she can pay if she wants to | WASHINGTON Just what in the name of decency is going on in the office of Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison? A recent e-mail from one former Hutchison intern to another (a particularly brutal breakup letter after an apparently brief romance) has exploded all over the Internet, provoking arched eyebrows and wagging tongues on Capitol Hill and beyond.

Yesterday, the Texas Republican's communications director -- who no doubt took the job to make a difference in national affairs -- was forced to weigh in on the tawdry little affair of Paul Kelly Tripplehorn Jr., the author of the e-mail.

"As soon as it was brought to the attention of our internship coordinator, they had a very frank discussion, and he was dismissed," Kevin Schweers told us about the late-June incident involving Tripplehorn, a 20-year-old Amherst College sophomore, and his ex-girlfriend, an unnamed 20-year-old University of Texas student.

Tripplehorn's e-mail, titled "you suck," featured such literary gems as: "I was planning on ruining your career by making phone calls to all of my parents (sic) friends and have you blackballed from the workplace as well as every prestigous (sic) law school in the country, but then (lucky for you) I decided not to do that because you are a sad sad person and I will just let your life self destruct right before my eyes. . . . I am sorry, I don't care how big of (a) sadistic (expletive) crush you have on me but people like me simple (sic) don't date people like you."

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Tripplehorn disputed that he was fired and said he's now interning in the office of a Republican House member he refused to identify. "What I did was wrong," he told us. "I wrote that letter in under 15 minutes in an absolute rage, and the only purpose of it was to make this girl irritated and push her buttons."

Judging from the thousands of folks who have been pushing the "send" button, he succeeded.


We hear that there's grumbling in the air that Simon & Schuster didn't ante up for the fabulous book party that Hillary Rodham Clinton's collaborator Lissa Muscatine and her husband, The Washington Post's Bradley Graham, hosted last month at their Bethesda, Md., mansion for the New York senator and best-selling author.

This week Muscatine told us: "We agreed to do it, we expected to pay for it, and we were happy to do it. It was a great party, and everybody had a great time." S&S President David Rosenthal said he's heard no complaints: "It was a swell party and everybody was very grateful when Lissa offered to do it. I will tell you this: There was never any change in the way that the party was being financed."

Certainly not small change. We hear the tab came to $40,000.

THIS JUST IN . . . -- The house-hunting never stops with Democrat John Edwards, who hopes to move into the White House in January 2005. We hear that the North Carolina senator and his wife, Elizabeth, who bought their Georgetown manse for $3.8 million only last fall, have put it on the market for $6.5 million.

Real estate agent Mary Bergstrom wouldn't comment, and Edwards campaign spokeswoman Jennifer Palmieri was equally mum.

-- From our High Jinks of the Rich Department: Hollywood lobbyist Jack Valenti and billionaire investment guru Warren Buffett were playing a fiercely competitive round of golf at last week's Allen & Co. confab for business leaders in Sun Valley, Idaho. As they shared a cart to the next hole, Valenti teased his rival about eBay auctioning a lunch with him to benefit a charity in San Francisco. "Someone is going to pay a king's ransom to lunch with you, and I'm getting you for four hours free," Valenti gloated. Buffett replied: "But you'll pay when this is over." Indeed, Valenti lost badly to Buffett and had to pay a dollar. Meanwhile, somebody bid $250,000 for the lunch.


"Marriage is very simple: one man and one woman. Not two men or three men or four men or one man or one woman or two women and three women or three women and three men. It's not that. It's one man, one woman." -- Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., opining on the prospect of gay marriage, and holding up various fingers to illustrate his points, during a news conference in the Capitol Tuesday.

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07/14/03: On the auction block: JFK'S boxer shorts; love bytes the maestro
07/10/03: A hairy situation at Homeland Security; Van Susteren v. Orth
06/30/03: Rep. Patrick Kennedy: I've never worked a (bleeping) day in my life; Drudge's dressing down; Ken Lay's Kerry connection
06/26/03: Rapping the beat
06/23/03: Another Watergate scandal?; AL GORE TV!
06/19/03: Tony Snow, rocker?; that won't be crow on Mr. Carlson's plate
06/16/03: Missing dog, ransom demand, Hollywood ending
06/12/03: Giving both parties the needle
06/05/03: Incoming from Barbara Bush?
06/02/03: Bob Dole's plan for fighting unemployment
05/29/03: Newt's new novel
05/27/03: Hitchens & Blumenthal, together again; He still believes in a man called Hope
05/09/03: Close, but no cigar; Romeo & Juliet with a happy ending?; Geraldo to help Heebs?
05/05/03: So Bill Gates and Tom Brokaw walk into a coffee bar . . .; hotel hell; more

© 2003, Creators Syndicate