Loose Lips Daily: Winners and Losers Edition
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
Right Wing Darling Now Oversees D.C. Photos: Gray Wins Marion Barry Bustin' Loose With Eleanor Holmes Norton Welcome Republican Overlords Voting in the District: Boring Foiled!
Good morning sweet readers! Oh no, what have we done? Look at all the people who won elections last night. Each and every single one of them is a politician. A politician! When will we ever learn, democracy doesn't work—the only solution is to appoint LL as benevolent dictator and hope for the best! News time:
Let's start with some of yesterday's winners:
Vince Gray: Gray wins with 74 percent of the vote. Surprise! He'll be the next mayor.
John Hlinko: The self-proclaimed "Buzz Czar," who started the Fenty write-in campaign's Facebook page, got a ton of free press. And the strong showing of the write-in campaign (23 percent) will give him plenty of good material for his new book. Plus he got his first taste of the delicious nectar known as D.C. politics. We'll probably never hear from him again.
Pat Mara: The local Republican golden boy makes good, winning his race for Ward 1 School Board member over Dotti Love Wade, the favored candidate of the feared Jim Graham political machine. Mara won by 7 points, and LL expects he'll make a strong run for the special election for Kwame Brown's seat.
Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh: Despite all the chatter about how her endorsement of Gray in the most rapidly pro-Fenty part of town was going to hurt her, Cheh cakewalked to a 30-point win.
Marion Barry: Barry made his way on stage during the victory celebration last night, despite what looked like efforts from the Gray camp to keep him away. The dancing was probably the most interesting part of the night. Gray and Brown's stump speeches were so dull that a good chunk of of the people at the victory celebration Love were chattering in the background.
And some of last night's losers:
Vince Gray: Guess those town halls didn't work, huh Vince? More than 27,0o0 folks wrote in Still Mayor Adrian Fenty (or DCist's Martin Austermuhle) last night. In Ward 3, nearly 44 percent of voters chose to write-in a candidate, which brings us to...
Ward 3: No offense, Upper Caucasia, but you kind of look like a bunch of whiny crybabies. Fenty lost, Rhee is gone. As LL will try and get Gray to say at his press conference today, get over it.
Self-Rule: A GOP-controlled House, at the very least, means a greater possibility of politicians elected in other parts of the country trying to meddle with D.C.'s local government.
Peter Nickles: The attorney general's most lasting legacy could be that D.C. elects future attorney generals. Despite his objections, the elected A.G. referendum passed 76-24. Overruled!
BOEE: LL's grandma could count votes faster.
Washington Post Editorial Page: Man, do you guys have any influence anymore? Cause it doesn't look that way from last night's results. GOP Ward 5 candidate Tim Day only got 6 percent of the vote, despite the Post's strong endorsement of Day and its dogged pursuit of Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr. over his alleged city-funded slush fund. Thomas got 84 percent of the vote! And their surprising endorsement of Cheh's opponent, Dave Hedgepeth, probably helped him get as many votes as he did, but still, he got spanked. Also, Posties recommended voting against the elected A.G. question. Oops.
AFTER THE JUMP: Actual News Summaries; So Who Is This Vince Gray Guy?; Transition Team Names; Transition Funds are Bad, K?...
So Just Who is This Vince Gray Fellow?: The Post's Nikita Stewart gives a history of Gray's— dare LL say it?— deliberative early political career. Most interesting part was how Gray went about beating then Ward 7 Councilmember Kevin Chavous. "In 2003, Gray decided to run for president of the Ward 7 Democrats in what turned out to be the first of a string of back-to-back victories. Vince Spaulding, former president of the Hillcrest Community Civic Association in Ward 7, recalled that Gray was an energetic newcomer when he took the helm of the local Democratic committee. ... Gray elevated the status of the Ward 7 Democrats, and in turn, elevated himself, community leaders said. By 2004, he was ready for Chavous. Gray, known for his diplomacy and etiquette, asked Chavous to meet him for breakfast before he announced publicly that he would, in fact, run against the incumbent, making reality out of the four-year-old rumor. 'I think you've outgrown this,' Gray told Chavous, whose aspiration to be mayor, constitutents said, came at the expense of their concerns. Chavous, a national advocate for school choice, can laugh now. 'I thought it was a classy move. He stroked my ego big time, and then he ran against me,' Chavous said. In that contest, Gray portrayed Chavous as an incumbent who had lost touch. 'He caught me when I was disengaged,' Chavous said."
Team America: Gray is scheduled to introduce his transition team today. The Post has already ruined the surprise and has started naming names: Former Mayor Anthony Williams, public education advocate Katherine Bradley and local Chamber of Commerce President Barbara Lang. Williams, it's worth noting, endorsed Fenty in the primary. "Signaling that education will remain a top priority, Gray also will announce prominent picks to consult on school reform: Bradley, president and co-founder of CityBridge Foundation, a nonprofit that has pushed universal pre-K, and Michael Lomax, president and chief executive of the United Negro College Fund. Bradley and Lomax have been targets of Gray's behind-the-scenes efforts to win over philanthropists and public education advocates concerned about the departure of Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee. The discussions prompted Gray to tap Kaya Henderson, Rhee's deputy, as interim chancellor to reassure influential private donors that there would be continuity. In his campaign against Fenty, however, Gray indicated that there would be a shift to broaden the scope of economic development and to focus on job training and creation. Lang, who has been president and chief executive of the D.C. Chamber of Commerce since 2002, will share responsibilities with Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president of George Washington University."
Don't Use Private Transition Funds, Please: The uber-influential Post editorial page tells Gray that using a private fund to cover transition costs is a bad idea. "Legitimate, reasonable costs of changing governments should be borne by government to avoid even the appearance of private parties seeking to buy influence with a new administration." Agreed. Best part of editorial: "We also have to wonder whether it's possible to rein in the costs associated with changing governments. How exactly did Mr. Fenty spend $150,000? We've asked but haven't gotten any answers." What?! The Fenty administration is unresponsive to editorial writer Jo-Ann Armao!? How is that for gratitude?
Cheh as Second in Command?: Gossip from Jonetta Rose Barras in Zaminer: "Sources told me Gray has lobbied Brown to appoint Ward 3's Mary Cheh chairwoman pro tempore and head of the education committee. Further, the chairman-elect may remove the budget from his Committee of the Whole." Well, you'd expect that Cheh would get something for stepping out on a limb and supporting Gray; after all, it was obviously a big political risk, as seen in last night's... Oh.
It's a Tie: A Superior Court Judge ruled yesterday that Harry Thomas Jr. has to hand over documents A.G. Nickles has subpoenaed, but not right away like Nickles wants. The ruling is a tie of sorts in the battle between Nickles and superlaywer Fred Cooke Jr.
Wrap it Up: DeBonis has the wrap up of the other elections, with special emphasis on the next D.C. Council chairman. "Brown emphasized that the city's financial health is his paramount concern. 'You have to have a stable government that's fiscally responsible... You have to have your financial house in order.'" Just not necessarily your financial boat, LL feels compelled to add.
Gimme More!: Want someone to tell you which ANC races mattered? WCP's LDP has got you covered.
Tax amnesty brings in more than expected.
Much better video of Barry dancing than LL's.
Virginia doesn't want the snakes Cheh is trying to save. Guess we'll just have to kill them.
Rhee not married yet.
Kaya Henderson steps up.
Warning: WCP's photographer Darrow Montgomery's chili is pretty dangerous gas-wise, if you know what LL means.