News & Politics

5 Times Politicians Used the Old “Georgetown Cocktail Parties Are The Worst” Line

Photograph by Tom LeGro, NewsHour via Flickr.

Want to prove you’re a maverick with heartland values and not some blue-blooded establishment shill? Then it’s time to learn the art of Georgetown-cocktail-party bashing.


Newt Gingrich to Salon while contemplating a presidential run: “I’m an outsider…I cue off of facts, and I cue off of the American people, and I don’t particularly cue off the power structure in this city or the patterns of Georgetown cocktail parties.”


Mike Huckabee talking to Radio Iowa about GOP voters: “You know, those aren’t people that sip Champagne at a Georgetown cocktail party. These are the people who just came in from the fields in the summer and in the winter who bundle up real tight on a caucus night.”


Senator John McCain to the Des Moines Register on Sarah Palin doubters: “Now, if there’s a Georgetown cocktail-party person who, quote, calls himself a conservative and doesn’t like her—good luck, good luck. Fine.”

In an interview with USA Today, McCain acknowledges that some question the capability of Palin to be president, if that became necessary: “I understand and have heard all the criticism, particularly those that reside inside the Georgetown cocktail-party circuit,” he said. “But I’ve also seen the effect that she has on average citizens, and it’s been remarkable.”


GOP strategist Mike Murphy writing on the conservative website Ricochet about Christine O’Donnell’s Senate run: “Senator Jim DeMint and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin should both temporarily move to Delaware full time and personally lead the O’Donnell campaign. Control it, direct it, and own it. Show that Georgetown cocktail party-addicted and hapless GOP establishment how it’s really done.”

This article appears in our May 2016 issue of Washingtonian.

Contributing Editor

Amanda has contributed to Washingtonian since 2016. She has written about the right-wing media personality Britt McHenry, chronicled her night with Stormy Daniels, and come clean about owning too much stuff. She lives on H Street. She can be reached at [email protected].