Gravel & Alter

Radar has a piece on Mike Gravel that features some interesting tidbits, including:

    Beaming after the Columbia event, Gravel walks with Alter to a nearby Cuban restaurant for a late lunch. On the way they encounter a gray-haired gentleman in owlish glasses. Alter greets him very respectfully. “This is Tom Edsall,” he says. Edsall was a senior political writer for the Washington Post for 25 years. He retired from the paper in 2006 and now writes for the New Republic and

    Gravel smiles broadly and says, “Hey, can you straighten out David Broder?” Broder, an influential columnist at the Post and the unofficial godfather of the D.C. press corps, has been a target of much criticism from liberal blogs for seeming to provide political cover for Bush on Iraq, even with a majority of Americans now opposing the war. “He doesn’t believe in the power of the people!” Gravel says. Edsall blinks and looks perplexed. “David Broder is the voice of the people,” he replies matter-of-factly. Gravel starts to smile, assuming Edsall is making an absurdist joke. But Edsall is not joking. The two men look at each other in awkward silence over a great gulf of unshared beliefs, then Gravel chuckles and walks ahead into the restaurant.


    Over a lunch of chips and salsa (“no jalapeños”) and a Bud Light draft, Gravel discusses his recent media blitz. Alter, wearing a sharp blazer over an open collared shirt, is sitting across from him eating a grilled chicken salad.

    “All I know is that if I can get up to double digits, it’s Katie bar the door!” He claps his hands together and smiles a Chosen One smile. He’s already counting the media, including Alter, as part of his team. “It’s people like you who take an interest—and all I gotta do is keep plugging along,” he says happily. “Everyone does their thing! I just happen to be the cutting edge of the sword.”

Alter also tells takes a moment off-camera (he was working on a profile of Gravel for the “Today” show) to tell the candidate how to mind his p’s and q’s in the media sphere (is that odd for a journo to be offering such advice?).