Marion Barry set for comeback in 2011

Photo courtesy of
‘Marion Barry and Mr. Grumpy Pants’
courtesy of ‘ricepeter’

Back in March, Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry (D) was stripped of his position as chair of the Council’s housing committee. This was, of course, due to his questionable awarding of contracts to a girlfriend, among other allegations of ethics violations. At the same time, he was removed from the Committee on Finance and Revenue, a move that seemed a long time coming given his guilty plea to failure to pay income tax.

It’s June now, and both candidates for Council chair are talking about giving Barry a committee chairmanship in 2011. Yup, that’s right, Barry could potentially get his power back in less than a year, and there’s nothing voters can do about it. Both Kwame Brown and Vincent Orange have not ruled out restoring Barry’s position. In fact, current At-Large Councilmember Brown has said it only makes sense, and that as chair all Councilmembers would head a committee. This was also the policy of current chair Vincent Gray, prior to Barry’s censure.

Mike DeBonis over at the WaPo has a good round-up of the issue, which is seemingly beyond understanding.

“You shouldn’t sit on the council, make that much money part-time and not be accountable for trying to move this city forward,” Brown said. “It’s the responsible thing to do.”

Vincent Orange, the former Councilmember and Pepco employee was a little more wishy-washy than Brown on the matter. Orange, at least, admitted that more information was needed to decide, considering that federal prosecutors are reviewing Barry’s case.

With neither of the Council chair candidates taking a hard stand on Barry’s ethics problems, it almost makes you want to write-in Vincent Gray for chair this November.

Dave has been following DC news and politics for nearly eight years and previous authored the blog “Why I Hate DC.” Dave tries to give a voice to those frustrated by the “politics as usual” in the area. By day he works in the technology department of a non-profit, by night he writes about news and politics and works at a local hardware store. Dave is also a contributor for Greater Greater Washington. You can follow him on Twitter or read his personal blog.

6 thoughts on “Marion Barry set for comeback in 2011

  1. no, it makes you want to blow up the wilson building and start over.

    all of our choices for the higher (and hell, the lower) political offices in this city consist of making the best of two or more bad choices.

  2. IMGoph nails it again. What troubles me more than the horse trading by Orange and Brown on this is that Barry never seems to struggle with the voters in Ward 8.

    I think you wrote something about this at the old blog – but why again do we not have a pipeline of effective, honest leaders to feed into the council and executive offices in this city?

    And why does it seem like so few people care about local politics (you know. in the real world. not the blogs i read)?

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  4. DC people have no right to ever complain about corruption as long as they keep voting him in

  5. i have to call bullshit on that, aloy. it’s not DC people, it’s ward 8 people. don’t paint us all with the same brush.

  6. Kwame Brown made a deal with Marion Barry to give him the economic development committee if Marion openly supported Kwame. And that’s exactly what Marion is doing! You gotta love this city….!!!