The knuckle knocking must stop for North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley (D), his doctor announced Monday (July 28). Easley delighted North Carolina Democrats when he exchanged a fist bump with Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama in June. But an operation on Easley's right shoulder means the governor must avoid the fist bumps until next year, said Dr. Bill Garrett, in a statement from the governor's office. Also off the list are "contact basketball, golf, shooting shotguns, weight lifting (and) NASCAR driving ."
Talk about estranged bedfellows. An obscure group running negative TV ads against Missouri state Sen. Chris Koster, a candidate for theAug. 5 Democratic primary for attorney general, got a $200,000 donation from Koster's ex-wife, reports the Kansas City Star . Rebecca Bowman Nassikas, who split with Koster in 2003, said she cut the check because Koster used the same amount - $200,000 he got from her in their divorce settlement - to help fund his campaign. "We're divorced, and I'm remarried to a really nice guy," Nassikas told the paper. "I have better things to do than be vindictive."
Governor or not, Christine Gregoire couldn't get into the self-described "friendliest bar" in Olympia, Wash., last weekend, reports Seattle's KING 5 Television . The 61-year-old Democrat wasn't carrying her ID, and a recently hired bouncer at Hannah's wouldn't let her in without it, even when told she was the governor. The bar's owner said the bouncer didn't get enough training, and Gregoire said she would go back to Hannah's "with my ID."
Don't try this at home - at least not in this weather. In a public service commercial to promote the use of programmable thermostats, Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) inadvertently showed why that's a good idea. The spot, which aired over the last month, shows Ritter turning down the temperature on the governor's mansion thermostat from 72 degrees to 68 degrees while the narrator urged viewers to conserve energy, the Rocky Mountain News writes. The state revamped the ad to correct the gaffe.
Freedom of information apparently isn't free in Vermont, a state employees union discovered. The Vermont State Employees Association asked for public records concerning job cuts and got a bill for $1,700, the Burlington Free Press reports. The secretary of state's office says that's the value of staff time needed to assemble the information, but the union says the state can't charge the fee. Both sides are still talking.