September 04, 2008

Heard on the Hill: Too Sexy for the Twin Cities?

By Emily Heil and Elizabeth Brotherton
Roll Call Staff
September 4, 2008

Her novel dishes about the seamy side of the political fundraising world — particularly the one inside the GOP’s money-making machine — so one wouldn’t expect former Republican fundraiser Nicole Sexton, who’s now with the ONE Campaign, to be the GOP’s favorite author.
Still, those who felt exposed by the truth-as-fiction book “Party Favors” apparently took their literary tastes a bit further than just taking the book off the list for the next book club gathering. According to his agent, Sexton canceled a book signing scheduled for Sept. 2 at a local Barnes & Noble bookstore because “top GOP officials” put pressure on her and on the nonpartisan ONE Campaign to nix the event.

A similar event at a Denver-area Borders bookstore during the Democratic National Convention went off without a hitch.

Sexton’s literary agent, Maura Teitelbaum, who’s with Abrams Artists Agency, says Republicans didn’t like the way their buck-raking operations were portrayed in the novel, which follows a young fundraiser who becomes disenchanted with the venality and loose ethics of her profession.
“It’s a shame that in this historic presidential election, when we should be focused on important issues like the economy and the war and global warming, that there are politicians that feel it’s important to squash a book signing,” she tells HOH. “It’s disheartening.”

GOPers might not have liked the book’s (fictional, of course) depiction of some fundraisers who skimmed huge amounts of money from their donors, or the way fundraisers REALLY view many donors — with a combination of pity and repulsion. An RNC spokesman said he knew nothing of the incident. But Teitelbaum says the book should open people’s eyes to dirty secrets on both sides of the aisle. Besides, she says, it’s just a fun read.

“I mean, it’s a pink-and-fuschia-covered book!” she tells us.

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