Not a move by a political correspondent, but it counts nonetheless. “Former Washington Post film critic Desson Thomson will join the Obama administration and head to London as a speechwriter for Ambassador Louis Susman,” a big Obama fundraiser, Washington Post “Federal Eye” blogger Ed O'Keefe reported on Monday in a post I saw highlighted on DCRTV.com.
O'Keefe elaborated: “Thomson, who grew up in Surrey, England, worked for The Post from 1983 to 2008, most recently as a film critic for the Weekend and Style sections.”
By O'Keefe's count, “Thomson is one of at least 14 journalists to join the Obama administration, with virtually all of them serving in a communications capacity,” and, intriguingly, O'Keefe asserted “other reporters at national outlets are known to be considering similar roles.”
Thomson's Web site touts:
My name is Desson Thomson, and I'm a former film critic for The Washington Post who speaks to groups, associations, or schools about one of our favorite pastimes – going to the movies. After 21 years' experience watching and reviewing films, I'm here to tell you that movies don't just entertain us. They offer powerful lessons and secrets about the way we live. They bring us face to face with our own humanity. And they illuminate life itself.
Last summer, the Times of London filled in Susman's biography:
Louis Susman, 71, whose likely appointment was first reported by The Times in February, raised more than $500,000 for Mr Obama's presidential campaign and inauguration and is a longtime Democratic donor.
Mr Susman, whose official title will be US Ambassador to the Court of St James's, is a recently retired vice-chairman of Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking. Citigroup has received $45 billion of federal "bailout" funds since last year's financial crash.
He served as national finance chairman for John Kerry's presidential bid in 2004, earning the nickname "the vacuum cleaner" for his ability to hoover up campaign cash. Former recipients of Mr Susman's fundraising prowess included the failed presidential campaigns of Democrats Ted Kennedy, Dick Gephardt and Bill Bradley. In addition to raising hundreds of millions, he was also a member of the Democratic National Committee during the 1970s.