Everyone knows that Poltico's coverage of the White House Corespondents' Dinner is sickening in its shallowness and shamelessness, but you wouldn't believe how lazy their tip sheets for reporters are. Seriously, they are this bad.
Gawker somehow got their hands on a Politico memo with questions to guide reporters in case they find themselves rubbing shoulders with certain celebrities at one of the weekend's many White House Corespondents' Dinner-related parties.
A lot of ink has been spilled this week about how awful the White House Corespondents' Dinner is, and how awful Politico generally is, and how awful their coverage of the Dinner is. On a weekend when the press is openly mingling with the Washington power players they're meant to cover, with a dash of real celebrity on top, Politico's relentless not-so-nerd prom coverage only adds to the embarrassment on display.
And this list is no exception. It's the latest bright red zit on Politico's blemished face. Reporters are instructed to ask Homeland stars Claire Danes and Navid Negahban the exact same question, but phrased differently to suit their character, and receive the blandest answer possible. ("You play __________ on TV -- how does that affect the way you see stories like the Boston bombings?") They're meant to ask Shaq about Chris Christie's potential 2016 presidential run, but not New Jersey native Jon Bon Jovi. Anyone who was reportedly partying late night with the President after the inauguration will be asked about partying late night with the President after the inauguration. It's the laziest collection of prepared question you could possibly prepare.
Of course, the person they have the most questions for is Ashley Judd. The actress was reportedly mulling a run for office in Kentucky but ultimately decided against it. Will it be awkward if she runs into Mitch McConnell, especially after that Mother Jones tape? Probably, but more, importantly, who cares?
We'll try not to laugh too hard at the hilarious "SEO tips from Mitch" that has, for whatever reason, a semi-suggestion to get Bradley Cooper on video this weekend. You know, for the clicks.
If it makes you feel any better, they're already losing when it comes to the pre-party gossip coverage. Spotted at last night's joint affair from Time and People magazines was Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite caught up in the General David Patraeus controversy. Politico didn't get a quote from her, but the Washington Post did.