Where's Gary Bauer? Seems like only a few months ago that Bauer, head of the Family Research Council, was making noises about running for president as the candidate of social conservatives--and people were taking him seriously. But now the socially-conservative face on television (Meet the Press, Larry King Live) and on the cover of U.S. News isn't that of Bauer, but of Bauer's patron, Dr. James Dobson. ... Somehow Chatterbox doesn't think Bauer is calling up Larry King and saying "would you put Dr. Dobson on TV." Bauer's been trumped by his own de facto boss. ... For Bauer to run for president now would be like Ralph Reed running for president when he was working for Pat Robertson. ... Plus Robertson himself is about to endorse Missouri Sen. John Ashcroft. ... For more on Dr. Dobson's doings, see Jacob Weisberg's analysis.
Some subway turnstiles are cheaper than others: It cost $25,000 a couple to see President and Mrs. Clinton at their fundraiser in Palo Alto, California, on May 1. But it cost only $5,000 a person to see the Clintons in Brookline, Massachusetts a few days later. One prominent California Democrat was recently heard to complain that for the $25,000 price of meeting Clinton in Palo Alto, she and her husband could have flown to Boston, stayed at the Ritz, chatted with the president, been entertained by James Taylor, visited a spa, flown back to Los Angeles and still had enough money left over to buy a small foreign car! ... Maybe there are the makings of a new profession here: "access arbitrage," in which highly-specialized entrepreneurs buy cheap Presidential face-time in Boston and sell it to eager, exploited moguls in Silicon Valley. ...
Too Good to Check Dept.: Speaking of Clinton's fundraising, Chatterbox hears that when a recent L.A. fundraising event was over, Clinton retired to the home of Ron Burkle, the Ralph's supermarket tycoon, where he was joined by actor Michael Douglas and former studio chief and trophy-wife spouse Mike Medavoy. ... Medavoy and Douglas are of course well known in Hollywood for their disinterest in sexual matters. Chatterbox bets they were talking p...p...p...policy! ... Somebody has to fill the void left by Vernon Jordan'... Burkle's chief of staff Darius Anderson confirms that Medavoy and Douglas were there, but makes a point of noting that each was there "with his wife." ... The only problem is that Douglas isn't married. ... Anderson also denies the salacious rumor that at about 2:00 or 3:00 AM, Burkle woke up to discover Clinton alone in Burkle's library, reading. ... Hey, but you just know that sort of thing goes on! ....
TODAY IN SLATE
Smash and Grab
Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?
Even When They Go to College, the Poor Sometimes Stay Poor
Here’s Just How Far a Southern Woman May Have to Drive to Get an Abortion
The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented
Marvel’s Civil War Is a Far-Right Paranoid Fantasy
It’s also a mess. Can the movies do better?
Sprawl, Decadence, and Environmental Ruin in Nevada
An All-Female Mission to Mars
As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.