City Desk

The Needle: No Tickets Edition

Fenty Goes Tea Party: Good thing for former Mayor Adrian Fenty no one watches Morning Joe—otherwise, most of the goodwill he still had among liberal D.C. voters who backed him last year would have evaporated, when he went on MSNBC to declare he agrees with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's drive to end collective bargaining for government workers. Fenty's new gig as a paid speaker on education reform will surely benefit from the press—"He's a Democrat and he's anti-union!"—but the appearance wasn't generally a highlight of his career. He also weighed in on whether Donald Trump and Newt Gingrich should run for the GOP's presidential nomination, because, you know, he's an expert political strategist. -1

Free Parking: Sure, city officials are riding around in government-paid luxury cars, but at least they've got to pay for their own parking or get a ticket, just like the rest of us. Wait, what? Never mind. Turns out top bureaucrats have racked up more than $2,500 in tickets and moving violation fines, and just left them unpaid. The good news: Cutting the budget deficit may just involve taking the keys away. The bad news: There are a lot of keys to take away. -2

Direct to Cuba: Flying out of Thurgood Marshall Baltimore Washington International Airport instead of Reagan National Airport is sometimes a hassle—getting halfway to Baltimore isn't quite as easy as hopping on the Metro from downtown. But soon, the reward for a haul up the BW Parkway (or the Metro bus from Greenbelt) could be some authentic Havana Club. Federal officials say BWI will be allowed to operate charter flights to Cuba. Bonus: You won't have to fly Southwest to get there. +2

Can't Spell "Final" Without "Quarterfinal": RFK Stadium was considered so outmoded that the committee trying to get the 2022 World Cup to the United States didn't include it in its bid. But the crumbling palace on East Capitol Street will host international soccer this summer nonetheless; the schedule released today by organizers of the Gold Cup, the North and Central American soccer championship, has the path to the final coming through D.C. If the U.S. finishes first or second in its group, the Yanks will play here. And since the group also includes powerhouses like Canada, Panama, and Guadeloupe, if the U.S. doesn't play here, there's trouble. +2

Yesterday's Needle rating: 41 Today's score: +1 Today's Needle rating: 42

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