At first, even Colorado's reps weren't sold on Senator Mark Udall's idea about Republicans and Democrats sitting together at the State of the Union speech. Now, as Cokie Roberts noted on National Public Radio this morning, the concept's taken on a life of its own, with elected officials who usually oppose each other planning to hook up, politically speaking. But Dana Perino isn't buying.
When asked about the seating arrangements, Roberts (no relation) said, "It has become a little bit funny, with people looking for dates to sit with at the State of the Union, and some matching up went on [during] the Sunday talk shows yesterday. But sometimes, symbolism like this can make a difference."
Not in the opinion of former White House press secretary and 2007 Westword profile subject Perino. This morning on Fox & Friends, she dismissed the Udall togetherness effort as "pretty silly."
Of course, given how ugly politics has become of late, "pretty silly" might be considered a significant upgrade.
Use the player below to hear Roberts's take. Beneath that, find a Udall office release about a press conference tomorrow on SOTU seating, as well as a letter on the subject signed by 59 lawmakers.
Udall press release:
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TOMORROW: Udall, Murkowski, Shuler and Gosar to Hold News Conference on Push for Bipartisan Seating at State of the Union
Lawmakers, who Co-Led Letter Calling for Bipartisan Seating, Very Encouraged by Enthusiastic Response
Washington, D.C. -- On Tuesday, January 25, senators Mark Udall (D-CO) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and representatives Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) and Paul Gosar (R-AZ) will hold a news conference on their effort to end the practice of sitting divided by party during the President's State of the Union address.
The four, who co-led a letter to the House and Senate leadership, are very encouraged by the enthusiastic response from their colleagues. The letter was signed by 59 members of Congress from both parties and both houses, and many others have already committed to sitting together, even if they haven't signed the letter. Udall, Murkowski, Shuler and Gosar will discuss how the effort on Tuesday -- while symbolic -- can help shape the tone in our broader political debate.
WHAT: Press conference with Sens. Udall and Murkowski, Reps. Shuler and Gosar
WHEN: Tuesday, January 25, 2011, 11 a.m. [9 a.m. Mountain time]
WHERE: Senate Radio & TV Gallery
U.S. Capitol, S-325
Final State of the Union letter:
More from our Media archive: "Dana Perino auditions for Fox News on The Daily Show."