Hotline Profiles Steve Thomma

Some tidbits from from the Friday Hotline’s interview with Knight Ridder’s chief political correspondent:

What’s your most embarrassing on-the-job moment? (Or as embarrassing as you’d like to reveal?)

Telling the Knight Ridder board that Phil Gramm was favored to beat Bob Dole for the 1996 Republican Presidential nomination. Gramm, of course, never made it to New Hampshire. And Dave Hall, then the publisher of the Miami Herald, never let me forget it.

If you could interview any deceased person, who would it be and why?

John F. Kennedy. His death left so many unanswered questions. Would he have stayed in Vietnam? What would he have done when the Warsaw Pact invaded Czechoslovakia? How would he have reacted to the counter culture of the 1960s? How would the country’s most prominent Roman Catholic politician have responded to the Roe vs Wade decision?

What would be your last meal — ever?

At the Berghoff in Chicago, re-opened just for me, my family and friends. Wiener Schnitzel, with fried potatoes, creamed spinach, a stack of rye bread on the side, washed down with Berghoff lager.

And finally, we’re ending this feature with a question posed by the last interviewee. This is from New York Times’ Mark Leibovich: Who’s the U.S. politician you’d least like to be seated next to on a cross-country flight?

What a fiendish question from such a nice guy. Here’s my political answer: stuck in a middle seat between Dennis Kucinich and Bob Dornan.