Fast Chat: Capitol Hill Watering Hole Owner

The Hawk 'n' Dove is a Capitol Hill watering hole par excellence—a place for stodgy politicos and eager-beaver staffers to down shots and talk shop. It was twice featured on NBC's "The West Wing" and played host to President Obama's first Beltway fundraiser. Manager Paul Meagher has tended the bar since 1973, and he spoke with NEWSWEEK's Eliza Gray.

How does the clientele change when the presidency flips?
It's better for business when Democrats are in power because they traditionally like living in urban areas. Republicans like to live in the suburbs.

Have you noticed any change in spending habits from the Bush folks to the Obama crowd?
The Republicans had a little more economic wherewithal. A lot of the Obama people just want to be here and don't necessarily have jobs, so their spending is more contained.

Has the mood in the bar been different around this inauguration than during past ones?
I'm not hearing any Republican or Democratic grousing. In the early Bush years, there were all these smaller issues that people were willing to get into arguments about, and so far that hasn't happened. Everybody seems to be really pulling for this guy.

And do Republicans and Democrats drink differently?
No. There's no red America, there's no blue America, there's just a Jägermeister America.

Join the Discussion