Loose Lips

Finally, Fenty Votes For Himself

Mayor Adrian Fenty is already off schedule and running late to vote at his precinct. Here's what he missed: A woman exiting a cab exclaiming that cabbies are giving free rides (!) to Gray voters, a trash truck honking at Gray supporters, a woman shouting nonstop for Gray (and Mendo, too).

Fenty's interview on Morning Joe ended at 6:50 a.m. He was supposed to arrive at 7:30 at Sharpe Health located at 4300 13th Street NW. His black Navigator does not pull up until 8:11 a.m. This counts as news.

Michelle Fenty, in a skintight pink dress (where's the green?), climbs out first then the mayor and their children—the twins and their almost-two-year-old daughter, Aerin. The twins are dressed in matching outfits—tan pants and blue checked shirts. Free from their Crestwood bubble—where, as the Post reported over the weekend, they are only allowed to watch the Tennis Channel—they look nervous as hell, staring at the gaggle of cameras and reporters, shy and unblinking. As a twin myself, I feel for them in their matching outfits. Not cool.

Fenty, clutching Aerin in one arm, hands his wife their daughter's toy–a mini red Harrods bag with a teddy bear tucked inside. A big-city mayor's gift from some trip he refused to tell reporter's about. There's more husband-and-wife confusion over who holds Aerin's bottle. The family scene is sweet. But also rare. It's the kind of optics the mayor has refused to dabble in throughout this campaign. Maybe it would have helped him in the polls.

Finally, after greeting some Green Teamers, Fenty declares: "Let's go vote!"

Inside the precinct, Michelle explains to one of the twins how the poll workers look up voters by their last names. Fenty chooses to vote with a paper ballot. Michelle takes a twin inside a voting booth. Fenty is lagging behind. His other son has brought along Mardi Gras beads; he fiddles with them like rosaries. As they walk to a voting booth, he turns to his father with a question: What other races are there? Fenty rattles off the easy ones—At-Large, Council Chair. And then gets kinda stumped. The mayor forgets about Eleanor.

"I think there's some statehood races," Fenty explains.

Fenty fills out his ballot presumably voting for himself. He tells his son in the perfect parent voice: "When you vote, you check to see if there's anything on the back [of the ballot]." The back is blank.

After it's all over, the kids clamor for the stickers.

As the Fenty clan walks out, a pair of teachers spot them in hallway. They don't rush the mayor for a hug or a handshake. From a safe distance, they gush over Fenty's daughter's cuteness. As the mayor is about to exit,  one of them shouts: "I'm a highly effective teacher!"

Outside, Fenty gathers the Green Team in for another huddle. All hands in. This time, his wife leads the cheer. One! Two! Three! Victory!

The apparent next stop: Dropping the twins off at school.

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  • http://www.justicefordctaxis.com Ken Williams

    The cab drivers did not oppose Fenty because of the switch to meters. Every driver will tell you that he (or once in a while she) has embraced the meter because it reduces confusion and conflict with passengers.

    The grievances drivers have are as follows:

    1) the Mayor set the mileage rate at the lowest in the country

    2) the Mayor has denied them representation on the nine-member Commission that governs their very lives; there are supposed to be three representatives of the cab industry

    3) the Mayor continues to claim unilateral “emergency” authority over the industry and refuses to revert complete regulatory authority back to the Commission where it belongs by local statute

    4) the Mayor shut down the Commission last year for eight months, right when it had unanimously voted to reconvene to raise the fares to parity with surrounding counties.

    5) the Mayor has failed to address persistent harassment and abuse by the local taxi hack inspectors.

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