After a grueling day of diplomatic affairs, Condoleezza Rice could probably use an affair of her own. But things must be pretty grim if even Fox News feels compelled to hook her up. Not surprisingly, the blog world is abuzz this week after a recent interview in which Fox correspondent James Rosen lobbied the defiantly single Secretary of State on the charms of a comely female colleague.
The odd interchange aired last Tuesday, when Rice sat down with Rosen for an interview in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Rosen opened the conversation with a few softball questions about President Aristide and Iran’s nuclear ambitions. But he closed it with an impassioned testimonial on behalf of Fox & Friends anchor Lauren Green, a thirtysomething former Miss Minnesota who’s apparently a big fan of the Secretary’s. An excerpt:
ROSEN: … All right. I close with a gift for you. You met this person once, I believe, but you really, I think, ought to know each other because this woman is… I think you’ll have an interest in knowing her. She is one of our Fox News anchors in New York. Her name is Lauren Green. She is brilliant, she’s beautiful, she’s African-American, she’s single and she’s a concert pianist in her spare time.
RICE: My goodness.
ROSEN: And she asked me to give you her CD and I promised her that I would.
RICE: That’s perfect.
ROSEN: And here’s her doing a number of different classical pieces.
RICE: Well, that’s special.
ROSEN: So there you have it.RICE: Thank her very much and I look forward to seeing her sometime.
ROSEN: All right. She’s going to want to hear from you.
RICE: And maybe even playing dual piano sometime.
Not surprisingly, the curious exchange left many wondering if the wry reporter was trying to set Rice up on a date. But when we called to ask if he was trying to play matchmaker, Rosen insisted “nothing could be further from the truth…What I meant to say is that the two of them have a lot in common.” The veteran correspondent, who has frequently accompanied Rice on overseas trips, added, “I would never presume to deal at all with Secretary Rice’s personal life.”
Though Rice hasn’t been publicly linked with anyone since she stepped out with football player-turned-actor Gene Washington in the late 1980s, State Department spokesman Edgar Vasquez dismisses online speculation about a Sapphic set-up. “I wouldn’t read anything into that,” he counseled when we called him yesterday. Vasquez says there is no date set for Rice’s proposed rendezvous to tickle the ivories with Green, but adds, “I don’t think she’d be averse to meeting her. Whether there’s time and her schedule opens up, that’s a different thing.”