It sounds like a bad joke: a newspaper goes in search of the 50 Most Beautiful People on Capitol Hill. The punch line should be: “They’re still looking.”
But they managed to fill out their top 50 with a lot of Californians.
It’s become a summer ritual in the halls of Congress – who’s on “The Hill” newspaper’s list of the “Most Beautiful People"? This year, seven of the 50 are from California – and an eighth works for a California member of Congress. That means 16 percent of the most attractive people on Capitol Hill are from the Golden State.
Twenty-three-year-old Allison Sadoian says, "We just have a certain glow about us, maybe."
Sadoian is legislative aide to Republican Congressman George Radanovich of the Central Valley on Armenian issues. She says when they called to tell her she was nominated, she was shocked. "I couldn’t believe it."
She says her boss just laughed. But she’s enjoying the attention. "You know, today it’s funny. I’ve gotten a lot of requests on Facebook, people have been e-mailing me."
Any dates out of it? "Not yet!" she says.
Also on the list: 27-year-old San Dimas native Bret Manley. He advises Republican Congressman Gary Miller of Diamond Bar on financial services issues. Manley says he was nominated before. "But they didn’t pick me. So I was like all right, fine. Go through this whole song and dance again, not get picked, and then you know, life goes on."
He sounds a bit embarrassed or ambivalent about all of the attention. "I’m going to have fun with it for a day," he says. "Or whatever. And then everybody’ll forget about it and I’ll go back to life as usual."
Manley is also listed in “The Hill” profile as single. So far, he hasn't gotten any phone calls from interested parties. "No. That would be creepy, I think. Slightly."
Manley does have one thought about the predominant number of Californians on the list. "I guess we’re just better looking," he says. "Coming from California, obviously I have a bias."
Three California members of Congress are on the list, including freshman Democrat Judy Chu of El Monte. She says it's "odd. But it’s an honor, I suppose."
Congresswoman Chu is a relative newcomer to Capitol Hill. She was sworn in just a year ago, yet cracked the top 10, coming in at number 7. The congresswoman with a PhD says she was never considered for homecoming princess or prom queen. "This is the very first time that anything like this has ever happened to me."
Last year, L.A. Democrat Maxine Waters made the list. She says that's over. "It’s a fun thing. People enjoy saying, 'Oh, who did they pick?' And 'why did they pick that person? Oh, that person really deserves it. I’m not so sure about that person.' I say I felt in the senior citizen class."
This year, “The Hill” picked 67-year-old Congresswoman Anna Eshoo of Palo Alto – described as “a classic” for her “Sophia Loren-esque” look. And El Cajon Republican Duncan Hunter – who is often the hero at the annual congressional baseball game – also made the list.
Congresswoman Chu tried simple math to explain the preponderance of Californians among the beautiful people. "The odds may be greater for Californians since there are so many more of us. We are the eighth largest economy in the world."
But what about the notion Californians may also be better looking than the rest of the country? Chu considered the notion for a moment and concluded, "perhaps we should claim that as one of our virtues. One of the great things about our state."
Perhaps we should change the state’s motto from “Eureka!” to “You look marvelous!”