Loose Lips

“Bang It As Much As You Want To, David”

Marion Barry, David Catania Argue at D.C. Council

It was no Lincoln-Douglas debate, but Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry and at-large Councilmember David Catania had a mildly entertaining back-and-forth yesterday over the D.C. Council's role in relation to the executive branch.

Ostensibly, the health committee hearing yesterday morning was about Catania's bill that would require the head of the District's HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD and Tuberculosis Administration (or HAHSTA) be elevated to a cabinet-level position for the next two years.

But the real debate was whether the council ought to be telling the mayor how to organize city government.

Catania says yes, the council is perfectly in its right, especially with the District’s HIV/AIDS rate being so high and the International Aids Society Convention coming to town in 2012.

But Barry says the city no longer needs a meddling council sticking its nose in the mayor’s business. That's because the no-account former Mayor Adrian Fenty, who Barry said was the “most unaccountable mayor” he’d ever seen, is no longer in power.

“This is a new day in the District of Columbia," says Barry. "The day is over, Mr. Catania, when you’re going to tell the mayor what to do."

Barry repeatedly praised new Mayor Vince Gray as a hands-on mayor who is deeply committed to addressing the city’s HIV/AIDS problems, but should be given some time and leeway to organize his new administration as he see fits.

“Let the executive take the lead,” said Barry, who added that he was speaking solely on his own behalf and not the mayor’s.

(Barry also reminded those present several times that he had once been mayor and stressed repeatedly that he has a long and distinguished record in supporting the fight against HIV/AIDS. "No one supports [HIV/AIDS issues] any stronger than I do. Nobody. Nobody. Longtime fighter.")

Catania responded that it’s not the council’s role “to simply blow kisses” Gray’s way, but to engage the executive branch in a thoughtful conversation. Catania then let on that he’s feeling a bit ignored by Gray’s transition team and his new administration, who’d  hadn’t reached out to Catania or extended the “simple courtesies” councilmembers expect when new appointments are being made and announced.

“It is a little worrying to me, to be honest,” Catania said.

Things really heated up when Catania started questioning Dr. Nnemdi Kamanu Elias, interim senior deputy of HAHSTA, about whether she’s been having conversations with the new administration about what her future role might be.

That was too much for Barry, who interrupted Catania’s questions and called them “improper.”

Catania did not like Barry’s breach of council protocol and began banging his gavel several times in an attempt to get Barry to stop talking.

The gaveling appeared to have no effect. “Bang it as much as you want to, David,” Barry said.

He later scolded Catania for “second guessing” the inner workings of the Gray administration and told Catania that if he had any problems with the Gray transition or administration, he should do like Barry and take the “initiative” to reach out himself.

Catania replied that he had reached out to Team Gray, but had still been ignored.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • Barry is a joke

    Give'em hell David!

  • Crazy

    Barry make be a joke but David is a mean SOB who has lost some clout.

  • noodlez




  • John

    Barry was just pissed about the gavel because it was setting off his hangover.

  • drez

    “This is a new day in the District of Columbia," says Barry. "The day is over, Mr. Catania, when you’re going to tell the mayor what to do."
    Interesting. First the mayor doesn't listen, then the same mayor listens so much he is a push over.
    My take away? Barry is A) Suffering from Alzheimers and B) really likes sucking Gray's dick.

  • dbrighthaupt

    Unfreakinbelievable! Catania Keep doing what you are doing. You and maybe 1 or 2 CMs may be the only 'Checks' to this 'Unbalanced' Gray Admin.

    You were doing your job ~ sharing information the public should know. Now what they do with it could result in more 'white republications' not trying-but succeeding in taking control of DC again.

    When this 'fair' game of politics will blatantly dismiss the rules of ethics, integrity, statesmanship & Democracy, you're left w/ A Mean SOB, Angry Black Women, ect.

    Catania, thx for sharing your perception that this 'One City' Gray Team 'may be' ignorning your elected office.

    Marion Golden Globe act has to be his public plea to Gray. Gray needed to see that Marion's not mad for being ignored himself. Shit Marion has to call Gray several times, leaving multiple messages before a response as well Catania - trust me. He's still waiting for something from Gray and hadn't gotten it yet.

    Again.... HE IS waiting - not he's waiting on behalf of Ward 8.

    Certainly, give The Mayor is proper time to Lead. Give him a year to assess the impact on DC. But don't strip a CM the right to speak on issues regarding the Committee he Chairs.

    His/her sect can not be an hinderance. Once DC chooses to make white/gay/republican an evil issue, then Capital Hill Majority GOP, I suggest you go for what you know and bring-the-rain 10-fold based on your prejudices.

    'One City' pish-posh! My poor plot of land must of been declared Donnatoria Island cause I'm danmed sure not regarded part of this 'One'.

    Marion, work on your legacy, visit your fiance during work hours and continue to not lead as usual; and stop trying to politic with this new neo-elected official. It's a totally different cruddy disloyal game now son.

  • Ward-8

    Keep it up Mayor for life, Ms Catania is soley interested in pushing his Gay agenda, Barry is right he is trying to flex his girley muscle even before the new Mayor had a chance to sit at his new desk!

  • Terry Miller

    I saw this hearing and I thought that Catania came out looking like an angry no-longer-young man. He is mad about just about everything! I don't know what has happened to him, but he needs to get a grip.

    I was never a Barry supporter. I never voted for him and I had plenty of opportunities. But he is old now, and it just doesn't look right for Catania to engage in these petty spats with Barry. You don't remember the issue, you just remember Catania exploding with venom.

  • DC Respected Common People

    The white CM has a two-folded personality, when he wants to achieve it's positive and cares the least the Fag demonstrates negativity.

    For the record, he terminated Sharona because she refused to accept his abrasive controlling behavior of tones and languages, as his other competent staff remains to scared to challenge, including President of DC's School Board wife.

    It's interesting, to note how he never challenged the Bush administration, who denied his GAY marital quest. Because, he knows the real tough ones which lead him to become Independent with a low win. Keep it up Catania, and you will be out of the DOOR for good

    Niw lets' talk about the Mayor for Life, do not get him mis-understood. Not that he does not have a horrific personal closet of endless errors that annually premiere.

    Let Gray commitments in Ward 8 that have been discuss not be carried-out, and he will publicize them to the world. That's why Blacks and other minorities love him, he's courageous across the board (white, black, jewish, etc.).

    He did let this city down by failing to effectively oversee as Chaiperson of Employment Services.

    In other words, he's fearless (most scholastic and strategic DC political leader), and whomever he has surrounded himself therewith may they forever sustain. The man looks good, speaks well and in this case regarding Ugly Ass Gray he's correct.

  • Jim

    MARION BARRY IS A BIGOT. He doesn't like Catania because Catania is gay.

  • TheresaDudley,Teacher

    Gays, illegal aliens, corrupt cops and politicians if WHITE are alright with me. That is why I support white PG cop, Richard Delaber of Laurel, arrested for corruption. And not Jack or Leslie Johnson of Mitcheville even thought that dumb bitch put $80K in her bra. Her Husband Jack 'Set the Bitch Up' Johnson is not cool with me cause I like white men and sorry I married a black guy.

    And I hate fat-nasty-black-female preachers,like Judy T and her sis Deborah Jackson Them fat slobs are 793lbs combined funk)in SE by 7D police and you can smell them pig-feet eating hobirds a mile away.

  • Truth Hurts

    Much of the country doesn't take DC seriously. Barry's arrogant, smug, and hypocritical behavior is a major reason why they laugh at us.

  • http://www.pozmingle.com positiveguy

    HIV is not actually a death sentence. It is a disease that can be managed and be controlled by the individual who acquired it allowing him to live a long normal and productive life like anyone else. Pozmingle.com the largest dating site for HIV singles claim that they have 200,000 HIV members, Most of them are here to find understanding, support and love. It is really a good thing that encourage each other, Leading a healthy life.

  • Kyser Sose

    "Marion, work on your legacy, visit your fiance during work hours and continue to not lead as usual";

    HELL hath no FURY like a WOMAN...........