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Partying on the Hill

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I am a little behind the (Hill) Times on this one since the survey was actually published about a month ago.

But I was reading the federal political inside baseball newspaper today looking for information on another MP I’m writing about and discovered two Manitoba MPs made the cut on the Hill Times annual informal survey of political staffers.

Merv Tweed, the MP for Brandon-Souris was voted the third-best party thrower on the hill.

Not surprising since people are still referencing the shindig he had the day of the Speaker’s election last fall.

The "hospitality suite" in fellow Manitoba Conservative MP Steven Fletcher’s office became quite the event, with MPs of all parties dropping in between voting rounds for, um, beverages and camaraderie. From what I was told, the longer the day went on, the more crowded the office became.

Tweed made it all the way to the final ballot in that race. I’d like to think that has more to do with his reputation for being a fair chair of the house transportation committee than his party throwing abilities, but it is hard for people not to like someone who knows how to have fun.

Also, Pat "dial-a-quote" Martin was voted as the second most quotable MP on the hill.

Only the Prime Minister himself bested Martin in the category.

Who can be surprised at that one either.

Martin is the one who once famously compared North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven to the North Korean dictator over Manitoba’s dispute with North Dakota over the Devil’s Lake outlet.

Or my more favourite recent quote of his about those scented aroma pods sent to every MP a few weeks ago to try and bring peace and tranquility to the Hill.

Martin said they stunk and were about as "welcome as a fart in church."

Yes. He does have a way with words.

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About Mia Rabson

Mia Rabson is a born and bred Winnipegger whose interest in politics seemed clear when she dressed up as Prime Minister Brian Mulroney for Halloween in the 7th grade.

Her interest in writing was no surprise to her parents, who learned early in Mia’s life that no piece of blank paper — or wall, for that matter — was safe in her hands.

She holds an honours BA in English from Queen’s University, a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario, and has completed a political journalism fellowship in Washington, D.C. with the Washington Centre for Politics and Journalism.

Prior to working for the Winnipeg Free Press, Mia briefly worked for the Detroit News in the paper’s Washington bureau.

Mia joined the Free Press team in February 2001, and in April 2001 was appointed to the Manitoba legislature bureau. In December 2004, she was appointed bureau chief at the legislature. She became the newspaper’s parliamentary bureau chief/national reporter in Ottawa in January 2008.

In 2008 she was nominated for a Michener Award with a team of reporters from the Free Press for its coverage of the province’s child welfare system.

She counts reliving the invasion at Dieppe, France, with veterans of the failed Second World War expedition and overcoming her fear of heights to touch the Golden Boy statue atop the Legislative Building among her favourite experiences as a reporter.

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