Grapevine: Iran up in arms over Michelle Obama's arms?

Iranian news agency alters image from Oscars appearance


And now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine...

Double Duty

Obama campaign manager Jim Messina has a new gig. Politico reports he is opening a private consulting firm while also serving as chairman of Organizing for Action (OFA), the non-profit successor to the presidential campaign committee "Obama for America".

As you might imagine some see a conflict in this arrangement.

Jonah Goldberg, Fox News contributor and at-large editor of National Review Online says -– quote -- "It's difficult to imagine the outrage if, in 2005, Karl Rove had decided to cash in by 'going pro' with the Bush re-election campaign in this manner. The Biblical gnashing of teeth and rending of cloth by the scandalized editors of The New York Times and The Washington Post alone would drive the mainstream media into a frenzy of paranoid outrage."

Earlier this week, we told you about reports high-dollar donors to Organizing for Action are essentially buying access to the president. 

The Envelope Please

First Lady Michelle Obama's cameo as an Oscar presenter generated buzz, raised some eyebrows, and had some folks fuming for one reason or another.

But in Iran they were up in arms about the first lady's arms.

In a story about "Argo" winning Best Picture, the Fars News Agency did a little alteration to the first lady's $9,000 evening gown to cover up some skin. 

The Guardian reports, Iranian women shown on state TV are required to have a hijab that covers their hair, arms, and legs.

For foreigners, that dress code appears to be relaxed somewhat, but the first lady's arms did not qualify apparently.

All Jokes Aside

And finally, a part-time judge in New Jersey is pleading his case to the state Supreme Court after a state ethics committee ordered him to quit his second job as a standup comic and actor.

Vince Sicari hears cases like traffic violations and disorderly conduct.

The ethics committee voiced concern that Sicari's comedy routine could give an appearance of bias even though he does not do lawyer jokes.

And the attorney general has issues with some of the characters Sicari has played on TV.

Sicari's gig as a comic and actor pays better and entitles him to health benefits.

As a judge, he makes only $13,000 a year.