Journalists who have worked with congressional staffers over the years will tell you that they are, by and large, hardworking, dedicated, able and discreet.
Of course, there are exceptions, like the three aides fired this week by Rep. Rick Larsen, a Washington State Democrat, for apparently drinking on the job and tweeting about their on-the-job imbibing, the low esteem they held their boss in and the YouTube music videos they were watching on the taxpayers' dime.
The story was broken by online newsite NW Daily Marker. An excerpt of its report:
"Over several months, according to online messages allegedly made by staffers with Democratic Congressman Rick Larsen, the D.C. office of Washington State's 2nd District has been the setting of a staffers-gone-wild bash, a binge of embarrassing behavior including insults lobbed by legislative aides at the Congressman himself and accounts of on-the-job drinking, all broadcast for the world to see on via Twitter."
The NW Daily Marker provides screenshots of the tweets which have apparently since been taken down.
Roll Call reports that once the congressman learned from the NW Daily Marker story about the goings-on in his office, it didn't turn out well for the aides:
Rep. Rick Larsen (D-Wash.) today fired three legislative aides who spent their days boozing it up in the office, destroying government property and badmouthing their boss — and obliviously bragged about it on Twitter.
Legislative aides Seth Burroughs and Elizabeth Robbee and legislative correspondent Ben Byers were terminated as a result of the Northwest Daily Marker story chronicling their baffling display of bureaucratic bravado.
It took little time for Larsen's Republican rival John Koster to add the misbehavior by the congressman's aides to his case why the Democrat shold be defeated.
"It is obvious that Larsen has made some some very poor hiring decisions, and that he has lost the respect and control of his staff."