Ein Steps Down as Condit's Spokesperson
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Ein Steps Down as Condit's Spokesperson

Less than a week after a television appearance that was almost universally judged a disaster by public relations professional, Marina Ein has stepped down as chief media advisor to Representative Gary Condit.

Paul Holmes

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 31—Less than a week after a television appearance that was almost universally judged a disaster by public relations professional, Marina Ein has stepped down as chief media advisor to Representative Gary Condit. Ein said she would continue to make herself available to Condit in an advisory capacity, but that she no longer needed to devote herself to his case because the flood of media calls has slowed to a trickle.
 
Ein Communications was hired by Condit attorney Abbe Lowell in July, and its president made headlines almost immediately by suggesting that reporters dig into the background of missing intern Chandra Levy—paying particular attention to her sexual history. While most observers have high praise for Ein’s skills as a counselor to beleaguered public figures, there was no noticeable improvement in Condit’s PR strategy, a fact many attributed to his reluctance to take advice.
 
That view was reinforced when Ein told reporters she had never met Condit during the time she was helping him with his PR, reporting to the congressman through Lowell. Published reports say Condit ignored Ein’s advice to come clean about his relationship with Levy and to apologize publicly during his interview with Connie Chung. Ein was also unhappy about a letter from Condit to his constituents, which also neglected to include an apology.
 
“Many people have given the congressman input as to what was important to communicate to his constituents,” Ein told reporters in a statement. “At the end of the day, every word in this letter is the congressman’s own.”
 
Julian Epstein, former House judiciary counsel, told Larry King, “I think generally Marina Ein is a very competent public relations expert, but I think in this case it was handled very badly. Even though I think Gary Condit most likely had nothing do with the disappearance, almost overnight with the interview he has gone from what people thought was a Clinton-like situation to an O.J.-like situation. This has been a disastrous handling from the public relations point of view.”
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