December 15, 2006
Never Fear, the "Media Whore" is Here

Many moons ago, I was conversing with a former staffer for Congressman Jay Inslee and the topic of the behavior of this person's old boss came up, at which point the confession was made: "Yeah, we realized Jay had pretty much become a media whore." Consumers of local media in recent years are not exactly stunned at the revelation, nor are reporters no longer surprised when Inslee proactively calls them in an attempt to insert his quote into pending stories on the news of the day.

In his latest such gambit, Inslee is pleading with Eli Lilly to salvage some portion of the ICOS Corp. they intend to purchase and dismantle (taking with them of course full rights to Cialis). Does anyone actually believe a multi-national corporation is going to make a decision, which has little if any business value to that company, simply because the transaction "has raised 'significant questions'" in the mind of the local Congressman? Of course not, but it sure makes for some pretty press.

In fairness, the potential sale of ICOS is a blow to the local biotech community, and shareholders are raising questions about the sale price. The possible deal was announced just days before news of a jump in sales and profits related to Cialis, which in theory says the proposed sale price is too low. Meanwhile, news has trickled out that ICOS has more in the pipeline than previously announced, though ICOS' current R&D portfolio still remains weak compared to biotech companies of similar size. And now, news that ICOS sales and profits are beating expectations raises even more questions about the fairness of the currently offered price.

Those topics, however, are for shareholders to sort out (this exceedingly modest shareholder will be voting against the sale at the current price), not Mr. Inslee. Back in 2002, the Seattle Times said he was "capable of grandstanding." No kidding.

Posted by Eric Earling at December 15, 2006 09:05 AM | Email This
Comments
1. Eli Lilly is in deep trouble for using their drug reps to 'encourage' doctors to write zyprexa for non-FDA approved 'off label' uses.

The drug causes increased diabetes risk,and medicare picks up all the expensive fallout.There are now 7 states (and counting) going after Lilly for fraud and restitution.

--

Daniel Haszard

Posted by: Daniel Haszard on December 15, 2006 09:40 AM
2. You've got to be kidding! There are few politicians of any political stripe with more passion, sincerity and energy than Jay Inslee. What you so easily dismiss as media whoredom is more about Jay's energy and passion. He speaks out on a wide variety of issues because he cares. Of course, he tries to get media exposure. Any ambitious politician does. But Jay gets a lot more media attention than he seeks because he's telegenic and the catchy quips come easily. His boyish enthusiasm is unique among politicians, so the media eats it up- and they should. Jay is the real deal. He's not cynical, he really does care about making the world a better place than he found it. More than I cay say for just about any of the current crop of state and national Republicans.

Posted by: bill l on December 15, 2006 11:02 AM
3. #2 We had Jay Inslee as our congressman in the 4th district. We had bill before congress and Jay promised he would not vote for it.Jay did,and we showed him the road to the coast.Apparently you people do not mind being Lied to.

Posted by: George on December 15, 2006 11:28 AM
4. any one notice that Washington was not even considered for the Rolls Royce jet engine plant -- even though Boeings will be finishing the plane here and that Chrisie herself went to the company headquarters to (plead) make a proposal in person -- six other states were considered -- rumor that Rolls was concerned about political and tax structure in state (read -- Democrats controlling the legislature) and two ineffective, empty-bra senators --

Posted by: Lew on December 15, 2006 11:32 AM
5. Bill 2
you're right on some points. After all, don't we expect politicians to be extroverted? I would hope so. who needs a wet towel or milquetoast in office. especially now with terroristr throat-cutters at our doorstep.

on the other hand, enthusiasm and drive are great--but I don't like a number of things on his ACTUAL VOTING RECORD. that's how I decide. too lib for me.

he does, thankfully, answer e-mails and letters from constituents better than other so-called "respensive elected's." especially Murray and Cantwell--always off-topic or near-topic pre-made form letters. never a focused, on-point response.

Posted by: jimmie-howya-doin on December 15, 2006 11:46 AM
6. Inslee is forever pandering to Bainbridge, the fringe tribe of his 1st Congressional. Inslee triumphant announcement on winning his re-election over Mr. Larry Ishmael of Issaguah, was to promise more sweet and sour pork for Bainbridge Island to support a grossly overpriced and grossly over supported with public funds a Japanese American Memorial.

Inslee's great claim to the Kitsap Sun Editorial Board at election was the fact he personally secured $1.2 million in National Park Service funding for his aide's Japanese Memorial. Aide/docent Moriwaki also received from NPS $600,000 recurring support for this private memorial.

Inslee's press coverage on Bainbridge is always over-the-top because of Inslee's left-of-center focus. During his attempt to secure the funding from NPS, he flew home a 95-year old Japanese-American woman to read his aide's statement about why the public must pay for the memorial. In addition a foreign head of state (ok, from a small Pacific Island, Tonga) and used that for a publicity stunt to showcase his aide's $5 million dollar memorial.

Inslee never really mingles with the population except at carefully arranged events where he can be seen as the Sugar Daddy for Bainbridge.

Posted by: Shogun on December 15, 2006 12:33 PM
7. Whatever; he has good staff. That is almost as important as party affiliation.

Posted by: swatter on December 15, 2006 12:54 PM
8. Monday evening I was on the Bainbridge ferry and there was a silver prius in front of me with a Jay Inslee sticker on it and above that a "Dems 06" sicker. When we loaded on teh ferry the driver got out and retrieved a breifcase from the back of the car. It was Jay Inslee.

Posted by: pbj on December 15, 2006 02:04 PM
9. Wow, Jay "Sweet and Sour Port" Inslee walks the walk. What has he accomplished with his project Apollo? ZERO. Inslee is all show and no substance. And if you see his official pictures run in the papers, he wear rouge. Ooo laa laaa !!

Posted by: Shogun on December 15, 2006 03:42 PM
10. Jay is a mile wide and an inch deep--that spells shallow. But why not, as that is similar to our newly elected senator, Maria Cantwell.
I used to live in Ricland where the people of the Yakima Valley saw through him quickly and turned him out.

Posted by: Lee & Lois Jones on December 16, 2006 11:30 AM
11. "Many moons ago, I was conversing with a former staffer for Congressman Jay Inslee and the topic of the behavior of this person's old boss came up, at which point the confession was made: 'Yeah, we realized Jay had pretty much become a media whore.'"

Wow. An elected representative in a free-press democracy seeks attention. That certainly makes for news! Who was the 'we' in that single staffer's quote? Was the staffer fired prior to making his or her judgement? Allowing an anonymous ex-employee, one who just might have a grudge to bear, free reign for personal attacks is completely irresponsible, or in other words, exactly what we expect from this wonderful blog.

The best part of this personal smear (aside from the school-boy thrill of using a word concerning sex) is the flagrant contradiction of reality. In fact, Rep. Inslee has legitimate interest in business decisions which affect his constituency. That goes doubly when the business involves international borders; it's hard to justify having a federal government if it will not examine foreign ownership of American employers.

This entire smear attempt comes straight from the playbook of that fellow whose statue currently stands, decorated as a Christmas tree, in Freemont Square. He too had both intellectual pretentions, an economic ideology which sounded great (but tasted terrible), and a love of name-calling personal attacks, especially ones with derogatory sexual connotations.

"What has he accomplished with his project Apollo? ZERO."

It's hard to get anything positive accomplished in a Congress which met three days per week (gotta love that right-wing work ethic), and then just to vote against gay marriage. Now that voters nationwide have made Rep. Inslee a member of a majority much larger than any over the past twelve years, we can judge him by his accomplishments, or lack thereof. (Do bear in mind that this majority must actually govern, unlike the previous six Congresses. This Congress faces a huge backlog of investigatory work to do.)

Posted by: Paddy Mac on December 16, 2006 02:13 PM
12. Most every Member of Congress is something of a media whore - get used to it. And typically it is the things they seek publicity about that get them into trouble, so what's not to like?

This does not appear to be a case grandstanding by Inslee. Looks to me like the Snohomish EDC asked him to send a letter.

All-in-all a pretty typical event in the life of a member of Congress speaking up for people in his district. I'd bet any Congressman Earling would do about the same thing.

Posted by: thor on December 18, 2006 07:30 PM
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