Bush 41 'socks it' to RNC donors

| Saturday, April 26, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

George H.W. Bush might be 89, but that doesn't mean he lacks socks appeal.

The former president is lending his name — and his signature — to pairs of wildly colored socks the Republican National Committee is selling in a fundraising effort.

For a $35 donation to the RNC, supporters will receive a pair of orange-, yellow-, green- and blue-striped socks that bear Bush's signature and a Republican elephant logo.

“I'm a self proclaimed sock man,” Bush writes in the fundraising solicitation. “The louder, the brighter, the crazier the pattern — the better!”

The socks are loud, all right. Think Van Halen at its loudest or a 747 just after being cleared for takeoff.

WHICH ROONEY WAS THAT, DENNIS? Dennis Bowman fell victim to the hazards of live television.

The veteran KDKA-TV weatherman was one of many local broadcasters across the country who mistakenly referred to the late “60 Minutes” commentator Andy Rooney when commenting on the recent death of actor Mickey Rooney. Bowman's flub made it onto a highlight reel of similar miscues that aired on ABC late-night host Jimmy Kimmel's show.

“I think the issue is that Mickey Rooney and Andy Rooney trip off the tongue about the same way,” Bowman wrote on Facebook. “And also Mickey Rooney was famous for portraying Andy Hardy.”

Could have been worse. Instead of Andy Rooney, Bowman could have confused Mickey Rooney with Steelers chairman Dan Rooney.

ENDORSEMENT FAIL. After seeing the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers list of endorsed primary candidates, it's easy to understand why test scores in the city school district are lacking.

The teachers union backed state Rep. EricMolchany over state Rep. Harry Readshaw in the Democrat primary for the merged legislative district they now share. That must have come as a surprise to state Rep. ErinMolchany, Readshaw's actual primary opponent.

Seems to us that Pittsburgh Public Schools teachers should start paying better attention — both in the classroom and when proofreading their news releases.

ON TARGET FOR NRA. The National Rifle Association's Political Victory Fund has endorsed U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster of Blair County over two opponents in the Republican primary for the 9th Congressional District.

Shuster earned an “A” rating from the NRA fund for his voting record on Second Amendment issues. The “A” rating is reserved for legislators who've consistently supported NRA positions on key votes.

“Throughout his career, Bill Shuster has steadfastly opposed gun and ammo bans, and has stood strong against Michael Bloomberg and President Obama's extreme gun control agenda,” said Chris W. Cox, chairman of the fund.

Shuster's primary challengers are tea-party figure Art Halvorson, a retired Coast Guard captain from Bedford County, and Travis Schooley, a Franklin County businessman.

WON'T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? Unity Township Supervisor Mike O'Barto must relish ribbon-cutting ceremonies.

Nothing was left on the cutting room floor, so to speak, when O'Barto ripped Eat 'n Park, Greater Latrobe Chamber of Commerce and Latrobe city officials for a supposed snub: not having any Unity officials present when the dining chain held a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the renovation of its Route 30 restaurant, which — as O'Barto pointed out — is in Unity, not Latrobe.

The township board chairman also huffed that Latrobe Mayor Rosie Wolford and City Manager Alex Graziani apparently did get invitations to the event.

But David Martin, the chamber's new president, claims an invite was emailed to O'Barto; plus, the restaurant's placard in the township also trumpeted the event.

Maybe O'Barto, who has often sparred with Latrobe over Adams Memorial Library and recreation funding, should follow the advice of Latrobe's own Fred Rogers and be kind to his neighbors. After all, St. Vincent College's Fred Rogers Center is in Unity.

We wonder whether O'Barto is penning a speech condemning The Golf Channel's recent three-part series on the legendary Arnold Palmer and all its mentions of Latrobe — even those uttered by the famous township resident himself.

— compiled by Trib Total Media staff

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