Eagle Publishing, parent company of Human Events, hosted its biennial Congressional Open House champagne celebration last night to welcome the 113th Congress (the Republican members at least).
Unfortunately, the party comes just a week after massive layoffs and the closure of Human Events‘ print product.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich attended with his wife Callista. Asked about Human Events, he said he was “very sad because it was historically a remarkable institution that had a big impact on American history going all the way back to 1944.” He added: “But I also recognize that we live in an age where you’re The Nation magazine or you’re Newsweek or a whole range of institutions — that the pressures of traditional print publication are enormous. And I think that Eagle had to take a serious look at reality in that sense.”
Regarding Conservative Political Action Conference organizers excluding New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) as a speaker at their event next week, while inviting Donald Trump, Gingrich said… it’s a decision that will likely “shrink CPAC more than it shrinks Christie.” Gingrich, is, of course, plump. As for Trump: “Donald Trump is a phenomenon all in his own.” Gingrich is a confirmed speaker at the event.
Several people from what’s left of the Human Events family were spotted at the event, including Editor David Harsanyi, Group Publisher Joe Guerriero, and former editor Tom Winter. After expressing disappointment at the paper’s shuttering, Winter told FishbowlDC that he needed to “watch himself” and then scooted away.
Erick Erickson, editor of RedState, which is also owned by Eagle, delivered brief remarks. “I will not ask for a round of applause for Hugo Chavez going to meet his maker,” he joked to a low groan from his audience. News about the death of the Venezuelan dictator had just released a couple hours before.
Notables: Washington Examiner Yeas and Nays columnist Alicia Cohn; Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.).
Quotable: “Rubio just texted me to say he’d try to make it.”– Eagle Publishing President Jeff Carneal. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) did not end up making it.
The now empty Human Events working space.
Food in the conference room; “A nice spread,” one attendee said.