DC Gossip: Sean Penn Still Slapping at Stalkers, REM Sees Racism in Birther Demands

Washington Post gossips Roxanne Roberts and Amy Argetsinger found some celebrity scoop at the White House Correspondents dinner for the Monday paper, including this from the MSNBC after-party at the Italian embassy:

Emeritus rock stars Michael Stipe and Mike Mills of R.E.M. gamely posed for photos with fans. Mills enthused about President Obama and Seth Meyers’ expert skewering of Donald Trump : “We’ve been waiting for someone to call this birther stuff on being the [baloney] it is,” the bassist said. “Some say it’s thinly veiled racism. For me, coming from the South, it’s racist plain and simple.” 

"Emeritus rock stars"? Like they're 80? Ouch. (REM's DC guide was David Corn of Mother Jones magazine.) And guess what? That "compassionate" humanitarian Sean Penn's still bullying people who want a picture:

At a late Friday “First Amendment” party (hosts: National Journal, the Atlantic, Funny or Die, and Impact Arts & Film Fund) throbbing with music and free booze, one inebriated fan asked for a photo with Penn and then turned snippy when the famously prickly star declined. Hostilities escalated: Penn struck the man’s cameraphone and drink from his hand. We’re not sure on the timeline, but, around then, the organizers hastily erected a velvet rope across a section of the room and divided the crowd by wattage. 

Penn wasn't the only growly guest: At the People/Time party, "there was a VIP attitude:  Cookbook diva/Andrew Cuomo girlfriend Sandra Lee glared frostily when we asked what brought her to town, and she declined to be photographed with Valerie Jarrett."

Right before the REM quotes, the Post gossips also noted:

Luke Russert strolled the red carpet with Terrell Owens, arms wrapped brotherly around each other’s shoulders, Rachel Maddow poured cocktails, slowly (“I’m a hobbyist,” she apologized), and Cee-Lo sang. Here, the barriers to celebrity were much lower, if you could make the cut to gain entry. 

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis