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02/21/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Mark Whitaker Learns The Ropes Of Washington

WASHINGTON, D.C.--Mark Whitaker, the 51-year-old Washington bureau chief for NBC News, was chuckling to himself. All this talk about celebrities invading the capital had made him jumpy, and he and a bunch of his fellow guests at a party at the British embassy here on Saturday night had just participated in a group head-swivel. Who had just entered?

"Oh my God," one guest whispered. It was Peter Orszag, the new head of the Office of Management and Budget!

Mr. Whitaker is new to D.C., and in New York, where he'd spent most of his adult life, Mr. Orszag would hardly have rated that whisper. Beyoncé maybe, or Tom Cruise. Not Mr. Orszag.

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