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Celebs at the GOP Convention

  • Capital Connections ®
  • |
  • August 09, 2000

by Karen Feld

Celebs at the GOP Convention – Are they Really Dems in Elephant Clothing? Was Jim Baker the Designated Absentee?

Where was Jim Baker, President George Bush’s Secretary of State, when the GOPs convened last week? Certainly not anywhere near Philadelphia. “W” insiders say the younger Bush is giving the “senior statesman” the cold shoulder. Could it be that the Guv feels Baker didn’t serve his dad well?

Regardless of party affiliation political insiders agree on one point — this upcoming presidential election is an important one. With no incumbent, the candidates will be talking about issues — from social security to education to health care. They’re also watching closely the gubernatorial races. That’s because the governors play a huge role in reapportionment. The political conventions are not as much about choosing candidates as about selling candidates, but after they’re over, people generally pay closer attention to the election. After all, the winning candidate will determine Supreme Court picks. And where the Court goes on issues — including abortion and the death penalty — matters.

Invitations to the hottest convention parties in LA don’t provide an address until the guests RSVP. But at least they’re not waiting behind a curtain reserved for the heavy hitters. That was the deal at George Magazine and The Creative Coalition bash for Michael J. Fox’s Parkinson’s Foundation at the Kenneth Cole boutique in Philly. Fox, along with pals Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bo Derek, and Billy Baldwin, were on one side of the curtain mingling with the big donors while Connie Stevens, Jack Valenti, Joe Morton, Georgette Mosbacher, and Philip Seymour Hoffman (the up and coming actor) hobnobbed with “A” list pressies. Others, including “W”‘s 18-year-old twin daughters, Jenn and Barbara, were turned away in the rain. By the way, we hear that one of the twins takes after Mom, and the other is just like her Dad. The family will keep an eye on one of the girls who will study close to home in Austin while her twin sis heads to Yale in the Fall. And more political connections, Kenneth Cole, who praised Fox’s courage, is Mario Cuomo’s son-in-law and Andrew Cuomo’s brother-in-law, but that didn’t stop him from participating in the GOP hoopla, if only to ensure that “the only loafers who appear in Washington are ours.”

Many of the Hollywood celebs who grumbled that they weren’t Republicans, had at least a momentary change of heart when they were escorted to the jam packed convention floor. I haven’t been in that kind of crowd since I was sandwiched in a demonstration for Elian in Havana a few months back. . . Spotted on the Floor: Singer Connie Stevens, a guest of the Bush family, and Diamond Rio drummer Brian Prout with girlfriend Rep. Mary Bono dressed in a halter top, not exactly congressional garb.

Matt Drudge spotted in Internet Alley happily penning his John Hancock on convention credentials for young pressies who wondered if the next scandal was brewing as he buzzed with Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff.

The long list of celebs scheduled to appear for Dems in LA next week: Michael Bolton, Cher, Paul Anka, Richard Dreyfuss, Rob Reiner, Barbra Streisand, Michael Douglas, Whoopi Goldberg, Patti La Belle, Jimmy Smits, Bianca Jagger, Angelica Houston, Diana Ross, Melissa Etheridge, Stevie Wonder, and the list goes on. . . and on.

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