Deftly Played, Mr. Webb

I suppose in some quarters this will be read as speaking truth to power, being a bit of a "maverick."

At a recent White House reception for freshman members of Congress, Virginia's newest senator tried to avoid President Bush. Democrat James Webb declined to stand in a presidential receiving line or to have his picture taken with the man he had often criticized on the stump this fall. But it wasn't long before Bush found him.
"How's your boy?" Bush asked, referring to Webb's son, a Marine serving in Iraq.

"I'd like to get them out of Iraq, Mr. President," Webb responded, echoing a campaign theme.
"That's not what I asked you," Bush said. "How's your boy?"
"That's between me and my boy, Mr. President," Webb said coldly, ending the conversation

See, if it were a matter of
I'm not particularly interested in having a picture of me and George W. Bush on my wall," Webb said
he'd have stayed home. Showing up for a reception with the President means he wanted the publicity all right --and he got it.