House Democrats Party Like Boom Times
House Democrats let it all hang out last night.
They danced, sang, drank and whooped it up at their annual retreat in Williamsburg until after midnight, forgetting, for a few hours at least, the misery of the free-falling economy, punctuated by the grim news that unemployment is hurling toward Great Depression levels.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (S.C.) danced together to a blues tune performed by Reps. David Obey (Wisc.) on harmonica and John Hall (N.Y.) on guitar, eyewitnesses tell the Sleuth.
Hall, of course, is "the" John Hall, the House Democratic Caucus's legitimate rock star who co-founded the band Orleans ("Still the One," "Dance With Me"). Obey and Hall were joined on stage by Rep. Frank Kratovil (Md.). The band usually includes folk singer Rep. Paul Hodes of New Hampshire, but he's off and running for the Senate to replace Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), President Obama's Commerce secretary nominee.
More on last night's scene: Majority Leader Steny Hoyer took off his jacket and boogied down to "Runaround Sue."
Even the reluctant dancer Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was coaxed onto the dance floor during a rousing version of "I Will Survive," says one Sleuth informant.
And who joined the band on stage to help belt out that little ditty?
Fittingly, Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Calif.), who so far has survived her home foreclosure and defaults crisis.
Democrats even did the electric slide at one point (to "Love Train," we're told).
We hear "caucus photographer," Rep. Sam Farr (D-Calif.), may have evidence of all this madness. You'll be first to see the photos if we get them.
Mary Ann Akers
February 7, 2009; 11:52 AM ET
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