Days Before Arrest, Watts-Brighthaupt Turned Down Barry Contract Offer

Darrow Montgomery

Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry's July 4 arrest capped a particularly tumultuous week in his relationship with Donna Watts-Brighthaupt.

On the previous Monday, June 29, Barry made a last-ditch offer to maintain his relationship with the woman he had been dating for a year. A key part of his offer was cash: In an e-mail typed and sent that afternoon by aide Brenda Richardson and signed by Barry, he offers Watts-Brighthaupt a part-time job working with Richardson---a job that could pay her as much as $55,000 over the next year.

"I told you today that I thought I could work out a way for you to work with Brenda Richardson whom you like and trust, to work 20 to 25 hours a week for the next three months for $5,000 a month. And I also promise you that I will work out a way for the next 12 months for at least $40,000. Thus we will have $55,000 in the pot."

The proposed arrangement was separate from all of Barry's previous financial dealings with Watts-Brighthaupt: A $5,000-per-month contract he had given her the previous fall out of his council office fund, and $600 that city records indicate she was paid out of campaign funds.

The context of Barry's offer was "Saving Your Life," to quote the first line of the e-mail. Saving her, that is, from the cervical cancer she'd had for the past 12 years, which had recurred in February, prompting a new round of chemotherapy and other medical treatment.


"We all want you to live," Barry wrote. "Not only to live, but to be happy and healthy. (God is the final decider.) Therefore, you must treat saving your life as the highest priority ever." To that end, Barry told Watts-Brighthaupt that she needed "to find a way to remove all stress out of your life." And the main stressor was money.

That night, Watts-Brighthaupt drafted a three-page reply to Barry.

In it, she complains that a proposal she had drafted the previous November pursuant to the $5,000-per-month contract was not taken seriously by Barry or his staff. Her desire for professional validation permeates the letter: Barry’s chief of staff, Bernadette Tolson, Watts-Brighthaupt wrote, had "little respect for me professionally." She expresses great respect for Richardson, Barry's top outreach person, and indeed asks to work with her on the condition that she be allowed to "attend most meetings in a working capacity" and that she be "allowed to share observations and ideas with [Barry] concerning relevant policy and public relations privately in the way in which I (we) are accustomed – debate style."

For this, she asked "for only enough compensation to keep the necessary lines of communications wide open, i.e., cell and home telephone bills."

Watts-Brighthaupt bristled at the suggestion in the Barry offer that they were paying her as a personal favor. And she rejected the proposal. "I feel as if I'm selling my soul to you for the tax payer’s dollar,” she wrote.

Both messages were provided to City Paper by Watts-Brighthaupt; a review of the computer file containing her reply indicates that the document was written and last revised on June 29, the night it was sent.

The clash outlined in the back-and-forth memos was baked into the Barry-Watts-Brighthaupt relationship from the start. The problem related to goals: Watts-Brighthaupt wanted meaningful work; Barry wanted her.

Watts-Brighthaupt says she originally approached the legendary D.C. pol because she wanted to steep herself in the parochial yet fascinating politics of her own ward. Barry was the perfect mentor, a man whose past scandals only seemed to help him with Ward 8 voters, many of whom were on some form of public assistance. Barry fashioned himself a champion of the “last, the least, and the lost.”

The two met at the June kickoff for Barry’s successful 2008 re-election campaign. Watts-Brighthaupt introduced herself to Barry by pointing out that there was a typo in a card soliciting campaign contributions. The councilmember took kindly to the attention, inviting Watts-Brighthaupt to his home for dinner. He served up deep-fried perch, okra, and cornbread.

The next day, the Barry campaign came to Watts-Brighthaupt’s block. Ever the showman, the 72-year-old went from door to door with Watts-Brighthaupt in his wake, soaking up pointers on retail politics. That week, Barry came by just about every day, recalls Watts-Brighthaupt. Soon she was chauffeuring him around town. “I loved driving him around more than anything,” she says. “I didn’t have stars in my eyes. I was in awe of how he got treated. I’m telling you, I can’t believe it. It was royalty.”

Tours through Ward 8 neighborhoods were exactly what Watts-Brighthaupt, 40, wanted out of the relationship. She received a political science degree from the University of the District of Columbia in 2006 and was eager to apply her education in a real-life setting.

Watts-Brighthaupt was paid meagerly for her services during the campaign---the previously mentioned $600, according to campaign finance records. The perks, however, sustained her. Barry took her out to eat all the time---breakfasts at Ward 8’s proprietary IHOP and dinners at pricey Ristorante La Perla in the West End and McCormick & Schmick’s at 9th and F Streets NW. There were also sleepovers at Barry’s house. The two would stay up late debating politics, often getting into good-natured arguments. Then they’d fall asleep on the couch watching Barry’s favorite channel, Fox News.

“I didn’t think he even thought of pursuing romance because of his health,” says Watts-Brighthaupt, in an apparent reference to a 1995 surgery in which the politician’s prostate gland was removed. “I thought he’d play as far as he could go given his health.”

Watts-Brighthaupt also got a free ride to the Democratic National Convention in August, though that junket presaged the developing storminess in their relationship. Barry and Watts-Brighthaupt shared a room, an intimate setting in which she says Barry demanded oral sex. When she didn’t oblige, he threw her out of the room, along with her clothes. She took refuge in a rented Cadillac in the hotel parking garage.

They reconciled to the point that Watts-Brighthaupt journeyed with Barry to Jamaica following his September victory in the Democratic primary. In the fall, it was time to talk about putting Watts-Brighthaupt to work. She discussed a project with Tolson, though the session hardly inspired Watts-Brighthaupt. “I felt like she thought I was just a bimbo getting a contract because I was with him,” she recalls.

By late October, the project had crystallized into a “poverty reduction” contract that would pay Watts-Brighthaupt $5,000 a month. “I was so excited, like a kid at Christmas,” she says.

Complete with hokey nonprofit moniker---Young Emerging Leaders---the program was designed to train Ward 8 residents to tackle social problems in their neighborhoods. Watts-Brighthaupt says she sunk herself into the work, banging out a manifesto on the ward’s needs. “With a high dropout rate, below grade-level scores, single mothers actually believing they should ‘do bad all by themselves,’ the thinning commradery of our families and communities and other key areas where true leaders are now---right now!....and where emerging leaders will be in dire need as conditions persist.” Watts-Brighthaupt traveled around the ward, surveyed people in its various communities, and otherwise pursued “the work I always wanted since I graduated from college.”

Then it ended. In early December, Barry instructed the council to terminate Watts-Brighthaupt’s payments. Later in the month, he turned around and requested immediate reinstatement. At this point, council procurement documents had become the best way to monitor the vicissitudes of the Barry–Watts-Brighthaupt relationship.

Watts-Brighthaupt’s work consisted of attending community meetings to pass out brochures, picking out potential lecturers, and programming events. She was also fighting with Barry over how the program should be run. She wanted to launch a series of seminars with speeches by leading thinkers on poverty. Barry wanted to occupy one-third of the speaking slots. “He just wanted a group of people to hear him speak,” she says.

As the discussions wore on, it became clear to Watts-Brighthaupt that Barry didn’t share her view that Young Emerging Leaders was a serious social program. In one memorable spat, she wanted to install a board of directors to guide the organization. Barry brushed aside the suggestion. “It would be checks and balances,” she explains. “He said that’s not needed.”

The program never came to fruition. There were no lectures given or future leaders recruited. Watts-Brighthaupt was paid $15,000 in total, she says.

The aborted initiative left Watts-Brighthaupt feeling dismayed. She’d hoped for a launching pad for her career. Instead, she says, “He was more into me than that project.”

That’s the context for the June 29 offer from the councilmember to “save” her with more contract cash. Watts-Brighthaupt wasn’t going to endure another procurement episode with the Barry camp. “I want to make it perfectly clear," she wrote to the councilmember, "that although it is greatly needed, financial assistance under your conditions would not be the proper avenue to take.”

Attempts to get Barry’s side of the story were unsuccessful. Tolson and Richardson refused to comment. Washington City Paper sent the June 29 correspondence to Barry spokesperson Natalie Williams in an effort to get a comment. Williams declined to comment at this time. At yesterday’s press conference, Barry refused to respond to any questions about contracts with Watts-Brighthaupt.

Documenting the Barry/Watts-Brighthaupt Work Product

Our Readers Say

I must say that after reading this article and seeing the WashPo video of Ms.Donna Watts-Brighthaupt I must say that I find her to be rather credible and not at all "unstable". Without knowing the entire story just what I have read here and in other publications I applaud her efforts to be taken seriously and to do honest and good work in the community. It is hard enough as a woman...a black woman in the workplace it horrible that she was pressured in this manner. Kudos to her for standing up and turning down the contract! Kudos to her for having the state of mind to keep evidence of what was happening. I don't find that to be manipulative or explotive at all. Unfortunetly it is one of those things that you have to do if you have any hopes of being believed - especailly when it involves a powerful man...especailly when it involves your boss. I think any woman can appreciate how hard this is.

Keep your head up and keep telling the truth! Good for you! Do not be intimidated.

Great article WCP!
One thing I would like to know. Was the proposed creation of the "Ward 8 Emerging Leaders" influenced or created in part because of the River East Emerging Leaders group?
@Advoc8te - with tears in both me and my daughters eyes THANK YOU! Though these damn comments are not suppose to mean a hill of beans to me - I fought hard not to respond the few times I did merely trying to sooth my ego. Who knows what tomorrow may bring but your comment will get me through today. We can only hope educated readers can reason their way through and see the same. THANK YOU!
And let me note that I never wanted or want anything to happen to Marion or myself - though I'll never consider myself a branch on his tree, he was my rock inspiring me politically and keeping my mind always on ready, but as I predicted thus is so. I'm bruised badly, but I'm not down. All I want is my health and a job (shameless plug lol)
Two quick comments...First, you guys (Wemple, DeBonis, Cherkis) suck. This article was much more compelling than the cover story crap from yesterday. Had you even hinted at such, it might've saved your rep in an enormously controversial cover page--semi-related article.

Second, The Advoc8te, assuming you are an African-American woman, I do agree that it may be difficult for African-American women, but I disagree with your stance on how this makes Ms. Watts more credible. Sure, she was sincere about wanting to do the work, but she was already romantically involved with him. If she was serious about this project, for appearances she would've ended the relationship. Maybe she wanted to do so, but in her desparate need for money, she complied with this arrangement.

Maybe Barry felt guilty about Denver and threw her something in return. Regardless of her genuine ambitions, she still looked like the BIMBO. She surely didn't return the taxpayer money for an unsuccessful project.
P.S., If I here one more thing about the "River East Emerging Leaders"...let the controversy die. Otherwise there will be more association with Barry's "competing" program than the good work you are supposed to be doing.

To Ms. Watts-Brighthaupt, my comments aren't meant to be crude about this situation. As you have admitted there was much wrongdoing on all three sides of the triangle. Let God and History judge your actions, not the City Paper and its readers. You can end this controversy by not feeling compelled to respond/defend all the reporting that is going on. Collectively, many readers don't want to hear anymore regarding your personal life with Mr. Barry. We are not better off because of knowing it. However, my prayers are for the healing of YOU, your ex-husband, and Mr. Barry. May nothing like this never be saturated amongst the DC Residents again. My prayers for your daughter as well who has to sit through this. Children are unfortunately the unsuspsecting victim when their parents (adults) make poor choices. Christopher Barry has endured his Father's scandals, so you are in seeming good company.
@Q While I respect everyone's right to have a difference of opinion until you have walked a mile a women's shoes I think there are just some things that you will never understand so I am not going to attempt to try and persaude you. There is a double standard plain and simple and there is a nasty practice to automatically believe the abuser (in the case the man) and vilify the victim. It's not only unfair but counter productive. We implore our young women to speak up if somene is abusing them (sexually, verbally, physically) and then we are so quick to not believe them. It not only gives power to the person holding all the cards but it discourages victims (men or women) to speak up.

Marion Barry was W-R-O-N-G end of story. It was inappropriate and he would not have done it to a man. I am not going to at this time (based off of what I have read/seen to date) going to find any reason to blame/accuse or insult this lady for trying to W-0-R-K so that she can provide for her family.

Was everything done perfectly here? No. But as a woman you learn quick that the same rules that apply to men don't always apply to you and that sometimes just to get in the game you have to take some knocks and dirty play and that is truly horrid.

As I said before based on this latest article (although to be honest I always felt the vast majority of the blame laid with Mr. Barry who I am no fan).

I can't even imagine what the last week must have been like for this woman.Just because she wanted to work. I am absolutetly horrified.

This is why Marion Barry must go because it is causing a lot of pain in people's lives and for his staff members to keep defending him and encourage him even by compliance to keep this going they should be ashamed. If you think someone is not being abused now look at his spokesperson. On some level I feel sorry for her. In order to keep her job she has to come out and spew these lies and accusations. As a woman she knows what it is like to feel powerless and to have to "go along" to "get along".

I am defnetly posting a link to this article on Congress Heights on the Rise. Already people who are reading it are commenting to me how they can emphathize with Ms WB.

Again - keep your head up and just keep telling the truth!
Please continue to speak out. This is a BIG part of the problem. People afraid to speak out. If sexual harrassers (and I realy feel this is what happened here) knew for sure that their victims would speak out they would think twice about harrassing.

This isnt about titalating news its about doing the right then and encouraging others TO DO THE RIGHT THEN.
typo should have said "DO THE RIGHT THING!"
I know I've said enough about this, but after reading the infamous email (that was POORLY redacted --- email addresses and phone numbers are still visable), the content written by Barry seems to concentrate on a partnership/support team. This "team" is to provide financial and health support for Ms. Watts. This raising money for the "pot" I find confusing...almost like Ms. Watts is a charity.

Nothing more than patent "cronyism", i.e., looking out for a constituent is present here. Many politicians "secure" employment for folks, so this strikes me as no different. I'd only cry foul if there was competition for this "made up" position. The email stresses and confirms the point that Ms. Watts needs financial assistance and freedom from many stressors. Giving her an IDIQ contract/employment is something that has a few guidelines but only challenged when people make a fuss.

As for her is pretty disturbing. She says "gosh darn" yet used the F-word. Interesting. Yet, instead of simply leaving it off with she doesn't want the handout, she goes in full detail exposing about WANTING TO WORK WITH BRENDA. Then switches personal sending this to BRENDA and talks about saving his life by not performing "wifedom" duties. So much for confidentiality. Poor Brenda, for she has been the steward and pass through for all of this.

These emails are one part looney, the next part tragic. Maybe its better to keep with the sensational cover pages after all. To print these things in their entirety would cause a lot of confusion and ridicule on WCP for even wasting time on this. Man, my head hurts trying to put these facts together.

One more thing, why was the date/time stamp on the PDF 7/10/2009? That brings some suspicion in the accuracy of the document.
"One more thing, why was the date/time stamp on the PDF 7/10/2009? That brings some suspicion in the accuracy of the document. "

I am sure it indicated when the word document was converted to a pdf document. Emails arent generated in PDF Form.

I am sure WCP did their due diligence. The document is valid. Lets stop trying to find reasons why MB isn't a crook.
Thank you City Paper for actually reporting.
People should be more concerned about what the Barry said than that the City Paper printed it.
Donna I know you personally and i know what type of person you are you need to get in contact with me ASAP i know by seeing my email name you know who i am....
Ummm Channel knock-off-

I personally know Donna and I know for a fact that Donna could get Marion back and have you dismissed immediately. Not only that she can have Marion fire that lame PR girl too - all yall rotted dried up branches taped to his limp tree. Donna just has that power that should have been her personal asset not to be judge by any of you no lifers who don't know what the hell you are talking about. But ummmmm do the following people:

- Look back on the tax court news scenes
- Note that Donna Karen pink suit - a little snug because of the many food outings with a couple more stars than Players Lounge- is a Donna Karen, Shoes St. Johns, Shirt St. Johns, Neiman Marcus clutch
- Not a track hair in sight (that day - sorry D)
- Note who arrived with the man and who left with the man
- zoom in on Ms. Arm Candy
- zoom in on that boy whose hand was forced in pink suits hand for the media because Arm Candy couldn't be in that spot, who is Arm Candy's son

Just cause one is temporarily broke doesn't mean they have to look or act like it, Diva handbook 101 - and made Marion look and feel like a million bucks when he was her arm steak.
Channel my dear, you were never an entity to Donna. Donna is above you to respond so I felt the need to. Go finish changing your boos depends and keep cleaning his house. When Donna's ready for him, she'll call him and guess what, he'll be there. Yall don't understand their relationship. Yall forget Donna was a mentee above all else and learned from the master. This mess needs to go on so she can get her battle badge and move on to the next level. You're not even in this vicious game of life - stay in your lane. Now the world knows.
Check Mate? Or you want more? Bring it!
WCP, could you please delete R.E.J.'s inarticulate, instigative comments (at least the one right above me)? I understand wanting to defend a friend, or whatever the relationship is there, but the comments are a rambunctious nuisance and do nothing to further this conversation. I'm pretty sure they're embarassing to Ms. Brighthaupt. And all of that talk of steak and candy is making me hungry.

fyi, Ms. Rhonda, the brand is Chanel.
Marion's favorite TV channel is Fox News. Awesome.
The bitch set you up, right Marion? Isn't everything you've ever done wrong someone else's fault? Same old tired story. No wonder people laugh at DC.
Crackhead is as crackhead does.

Marion Barry has done so much damage to DC throughout the years.
The more I learn, the more I respect Donna Watts-Brighthaupt. It's becoming clear that she seriously wanted at a real career for herself. She is the type of person that the DC gov needs more of. Unfortunately, and due to no fault of her own, she is being brought down with Barry. I hope she is vindicated in the end.
Thank you Dan! I hope I can use your comment as another shameless plug to get a job. Keep researching for yourselves - though I'll always include the City Paper as a trusted resource.

Umm that person who knows me. Only a friend would put herself out there-thank you. These Comment sections can get vicious = but I think they can sharpen your debate skills if used correctly.
We are going to have to meet up at the Lounge now called Georgena(sp?) I love that place and want to be able to get a veggie plate without any troubles.
Your friend

PS REJ I wasn't aware you posted here. After you shared a word of encouragement, to remind me that we who grew up together weren't suppose to be down here in the media ditches, I decided to post those words on my desktop and internalize it so I can grow on:

When things aren’t working properly, our first notion is to get them repaired. We know things like the car, remote control, and computer worked well once upon a time and we want it to be restored to its proper working order. When they don’t, life can become a little less convenient. But once we take them to get repaired and they work again, life is wonderful. Are we working properly?

“Let all things be done decently and in order.” I Corinthians 14:40 (NKJV)
Each of us has crevices in our lives that could use a squirt of Jesus. Daily the world puts wear and tear on our spirit and we need to get them back into “good” running condition. This requires reprogramming. How do we know? Does what we say and do mirror God? Is what we think worthy of giving God glory? God craves order and abhors confusion in every area of our life. Therefore we have to be willing to change, be reprogrammed. God reprograms us through various testing and trials of how we think and act. Some are simple test runs and others are rigorous testing that will extend us to our breakpoints to see how resilient we are in Christ. Once configured, our testing will be complete. Everything is in working order to work together for good and ready to continue in His purpose. (Romans 8:28)

I know you can spell - I got the sarcasim
You should be ashamed! Any attempt at objectivity or facts regarding Marion Barry seem irrelevant to your paper. I think your writers are mean, subjective and don't have a clue regarding ward 8. This is a man who was supported by the voters and they should decide his fate, not the media.
This Ward 8 voters says Barry is a crook and should be relocated to a jail cell. Just because someone at some time in their life may have done some good (as they should) does not mean they get a pass on committing crimes and unethical pratices.

Marion Barry is the worst thing that could happen to Ward 8. If Marion Barry was so good at his job wouldn't these problems in Ward 8 be solved by now? Wouldnt we see some improvement by now? This is why I voted for Charles Wilson in the primary. And educated, committed, experienced and LAW -ABIDING Ward 8 resident. We have many stars in Ward 8 and Marion Barry is standing in their way.

Marion must go! Good job WCP!
It seems, from the above article, that Ms. Brighthaupt was in good-faith trying to start a real non-profit. Her mistake was thinking that Mr. Barry was serious, too. I suppose she could have just taken the money and accepted her role as Barry's girlfriend and kept quiet. But it's understandable that people want to feel useful and want to start careers, especially if they are college graduates. I'm sure it was tempting for Ms. Brighthaupt to want to accept the June 29 money offer, especially if she really needed it. This whole controversey between Brighthaupt and Barry is going to be "he said she said" and boil-down to who to believe. In that contest I would believe Brighthaupt over Barry seeing as how the latter has a criminal record.

As an aside, the way DC gov't hands out money to non-profits is ripe for abuse. The city needs to award money via competitive bids from established non-profits to prevent these scandals.
I am inclined to believe DBrighthaupt simply because of her drive and passion to get in the political game not for power and fame but to make a difference! I felt her sincerity after reading the article. Yes, Ms. Brighthaupt your assessment was correct in using Marion as a mentor - no one knows DC's struggles better than Marion; however, he has also been a thorn in DC's side as well!

I grew up in DC (SE Washington) under Marion Barry's Mayorship which I profited greatly under his pet project the summer job YEP program back in the day. So I know first hand what he is capable of doing professionally and politically. I am a product of it! I became a single parent at the age of 15 years of age, mastered that feat with the help of my family and by using his Child Support Program in addition to my own employement. To make a long story short, I am currently a GS-13 Program Analyst in the Federal Governemnt w/o a College Degree; my daughter has a College Degree from Morgan State and a MA from Maryland University, she is happily married with one kid (new grandma). Now I attribute all of our accomplishments to God coupled with my efforts. I always admired Marion; however, I could also see a pattern of his down fall and in most cases usually bringing someone down with him unfortunately,i.e, former wives, staff members, etc. and believe it or not he has even helped me to learn via observing his mistakes. Sometimes, when your power is not steered by God's power things always happen like this (meaning his demise). You can't ever use the power that God invested in you for evil, greed, manipulation, etc. b/c it will always come back to you. Don't mean to sound preachy Ms. D. but God is Almighty! Not Marion Barry - God is the great Promoter and he holds all the kings in the palm of his hands - I am a living wittness! You did good - you felt safe with Marion and he dissappointed you - he was suppose to b/c it only points you back to God who is the source and resource of our very existence! Keep on keeping on and be blessed. Definitely praying for your health.
@ candiestripes - WOW! I didn't read one opinion in your comment. My sincerest thanks. Only if interested - and in extremely spare time, stay abreast until the truth unravels (could be years) and maybe then consider an opinion. I thank God for investigative reporteres and it seems The Washington City Paper is blessed with that good old fashioned muckraker the public needs.
Hey “D” I wanted to express my thoughts on your situation with Marion Barry. I am not here to judge but I know how it feels to get your degree and want to work in your field of study. I too graduated from the University of the District of Columbia in 2000 with a BA. and AAS. in Computer Science. I worked for the District Government for 10 years and bailed out after Marion Barry got caught up in the Vista Hotel scandal. After reading “CandiStripes” post, I too lived in South East and benefited from Barry programs. To name a few SYEP - Summer Youth Employment Program and YEA – Youth Employment Act as well as UDC. I was able to be “reassigned” to work in the DC Department of Employment Services Automated Data Processing Shop receiving my training on a “full” IBM platform working with (mentored by) some of the best programmers in DC government. I also ran into some DC employees who did not care to mentor me as well. I can believe you when you were trying to be mentored by the best in the political arena and you were going about the right way.

After I received my technical foundation from DC Government, I went on to work for some of the best in the business (private sector) companies such Bell Atlantic now known as Verizon , Northrop Grumman, MCI Telecommunications, Keane Consulting and currently Harris Corp. I have worked on some of the most cutting edge technology to name a few FIOS, GPS Mapping, WEB Portal, Internet ISP, Wireless, Hardware and Software Testing, Team Lead and much more. I am currently working as a Sr. Software Test Engineer.

I can tell you were not looking for any handouts if you made it through UDC. The saying goes like this, UDC is an easy school to get into but you will work your way out.
Stay Strong….
@BFEEMS - THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT I TELL EVERYONE AS WELL :) ..about UDC. You know for years I thought I was too good for UDC, just waiting for American University to knock on my door, pick me up and carry me to a waiting limo and drive me to register. Finally years passed and the' hip spreader' jobs weren't what I was born to do. UDC surprised the I don't know what out of me and stripped me like an onion. The Professors are great!

Every Comment that patiently awaits and seeks the truth --just simply to understand a humans actions has my heart felt appreciation. Thank you Thank you Thank you!
Reading this article does make me look at Watts-brighthaupt in a better light, but it is the old pay to play. This woman was looking for a way to increase her finances and the old smooth Marion Barry was using his ability to attract a new woman. Barry's lust for women and all of his other legal problems will eventually destroy this man.

Marion Barry, during his earlier years was a great policitian and he was a great for this city. It is now time for Mayor for Life to gracefully exit the stage and go on with his personal life and enjoy it. He is looking more like a clown every day at 72 just stop chasing women.
@ Dell - "but" negates everything before it. I grew up rich in love. Not a lot of stuff and not ever needing a thing. Material things were far from my mind - and yes, I'll admit, designed a partook mud pie picnics.

FAT, BLACK, NAPPY HAIR...and those were the happiest years of my life thus far.
My girlfriends teased me for buying in SE and for a stint refused to visit. My mother told me I'll never go wrong with all brick and that was the brick I could afford at the time. While doin' a little livin' I'm blessed to have acquired an appreciation for tasteful quality pleasures of my one life i.e., Levi's and Harleys; fishing and Nascar, Oysters and RC (now diet :( Cola ....I digress
The Nation didn't need to know this, BUTyour comment baited me to respond.

Mr/Ms Dell, it was never a need to increase finances in this manner, though with two girls needing a solid education, finances certainly aren't ruled out.
I'm responding to your comment and others because there was a desirable need to increase access and information NOT FINANCES - something every citizen should strive to do. And that was the basis of my program (my baby) that I wanted to launch. I still do, and since I'm not six feet under, I shall.

And I'll state again - I learned a hell of a lot from Marion (probably another American classic) and to quote him, "Why Not!?"
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