Loose Lips

Loose Lips Daily: Marion’s Jag Edition

A deliberative roundup of one city's local politics. Send your tips, releases, stories, events, etc. to lips@washingtoncitypaper.com. And get LL Daily sent straight to your inbox every morning!


  • Certified Disaster
  • So, Exactly When Did Kwame Ask for A Navigator?
  • Good afternoon sweet readers! It's Thursday, the day before Friday, and Washington City Paper is giving away the fruits of its labor. Do not miss this week's cover story by Rend Smith which begs the question: Why is a MPD vice squad putting guns in the faces of possible music copyright violators? Also this week, LL looks at how former Mayor Adrian Fenty's fraternity brothers Omar Karim and Sinclair Skinner are alleged in the D.C. Council's Trout report to have misused a minority-contracting program for their own benefit.

    Marion's Wheels: Pity the poor photographers over at The Washington Post. They keep getting assigned to take pictures of councilmember's cars. This time, it's Marion Barry's Jaguar, which, surprise!, isn't registered with the DMV and has "inactive" license plates Barry's old car. What this means: Barry probably hasn't paid excise taxes on his ride. Barry says it's his dealer's fault. It's a Barry-heavy news cycle today. The former mayor-for-life also went on NPR to talk Census results. Says Barry: "White people… are displacing African American renters, gentrifying the city. I’m not afraid to speak up and say that’s something we have got to deal with." And Barry also addressed a group of taxi drivers who were protesting a proposed taxi medallion system that Barry supports. ""Many of you are not from America," WTOP's Mark Segraves reports Barry saying. "We do things differently here."

    AFTER THE JUMP: Catania and Biddle; Ron Brown's Legacy; Rhee's Comments...

    Isn't Sekou Biddle the Truancy Guy?: On the one year anniversary of the South Capitol shootings, Councilmember David Catania "is introducing an ambitious, comprehensive bill that's meant to prevent youth violence by cracking down on truancy and requiring mental health screening for the District's children starting in preschool," reports the Examiner. "Catania said the shooting and the persistence of a mother who lost her child that day inspired him to develop the legislation, which, if passed, will link the city's patchwork of youth mental health programs and tighten policies on students who skip school." And... Catania endorsed at-large councilmember Sekou Biddle in next month's special election. Will the endorsement help Biddle get some of the establishment stink off of him? (Check out whose names are not on Biddle's news release.)

    Dad's Shoes: The Post's Style section remembers former Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown and looks at Councilmember Michael A. Brown's efforts to live up to his father's legacy. "Since the commerce secretary’s death, Michael Brown has often had to be a vessel for the grief and expectations of others, while finding his own way forward without his father’s guidance. And the journey has, at times, tripped him up."

    Me and My Big Mouth: The Post's Jay Mathews must be one lousy reporter, at least if former schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee is to be believed. Rhee called up Mathews and told him that her previous comments that USA Today, which did an investigation into possible cheating on standardized testing under Rhee's watch, is an enemy of school reform were "stupid" and she thinks "cheating might have occurred in the District and that she is glad her successor, Acting Chancellor Kaya Henderson, ordered a new investigation." Or so Mathews would have you believe. Rhee's spokeswoman, Mafara Hobson, tells Politico that Mathews got it wrong: "In an interview earlier today with The Washington Post, Michelle Rhee said that she could not be absolutely positive that cheating had not occurred simply because she was not and could not have been in every single classroom at the time. The reporter’s paraphrasing of what she said leaves out this important point, and is an inaccurate reading of what she intended to say. Anyone who tries to interpret this as meaning anything else would be wrong." Why does this story sound familiar?

    In Other News: First Lady Michelle Obama visits Ballou High School. House passes voucher bill. Lottery lawsuit moves forward.

    Gray sked: Getting booed at opening day.

    Council sked: 6 p.m. roundtable on Henderson's appointment. Matthews Memorial Baptist Church, 2616 Martin Luther King Jr., Ave., SE

    At-Large forum: 8 p.m. St. Columba's Episcopal Church. 4201 Albermarle St. NW.

    • Rake

      Barry said. "We do things differently here."

      Well Marion, you do things differently. Like evade paying taxes - again, and again, and again. I wonder how much longer Ward 8 will allow this doddering old fool to take from the city, while providing nothing (or almost) in return but good sound bites.

    • G

      Why is an ad for sinclairskinner.com running alongside this very article. Mixed messages, much?

    • michaeliceman

      Is the WCP taking his ad money (that would be tacky) or this one of those hijack banner deals?

      A better question is why is Skinner using a journalist's picture of him that was taken at a council hearing in his ad? Surely, he could find someone with a nice digital camera. Too funny!

    • Southeast Resident

      Will Chief Lanier please get to the bottom of this. How is it that MPD could find a car with dead plates and let the owner of it drive off with dead or no tags and no insurance on the vehicle. Talk about politicians being above the law. Anybody else would have either had the car impounded or had been thrown in jail, once MPD had identified the unpaid tickets as being before the vehicle was reported as missing. As a matter of fact that car needs to be impounded now, because if Barry gets into an accident with a law abiding citizen, he can't possibly pay for the damages with his a** being in perpetual hock.

      The Karim/Skinner scam would not have worked so well if it had not been for the assistance of that city official Jannarone. He needs to be thrown in jail and fined for corruption.

      Michael Brown could honor his Father by doing the job right that he was elected to do. Up to now, how has he developed the DC Workforce? Why was he missing from all of those Metro Board meetings? Plus, he should not utter a word about raising taxes on hard working DC citizens until the fraud, waste, abuse, graft, corruption, and inefficiency are cleaned up.

      Everyday that passes, it is becoming clearer to the country what a fraud Rhee was. From resume padding to her piss poor management, while she loaded up her pocket with more DC taxpayer dollars than what she was worth.

      Chief Lanier needs four folks to keep up with all of her emails. What a crock! For that big check that she is getting, she should be taking care of her own emails and putting the other four personnel slots on the street to do police work.

    • Rick Mangus

      Mo Barry aka (Crackatowa) thinks he is above the law and you know what it sure seems that way! Everyone lets this crooked bastard slide because if you corner this lying prick he plays the race card a song that I for one am getting very tired of hearing! PUT HIS ASS IN JAIL!

    • Southeast Ken

      I am sick of hearing about Marion Barry. Once the man is dead, I wonder if the media will continue to focus on him?

    • http://citypaper Tony

      Southeast Resident, Southeast Ken, Brown, Barry and Thomas have introduce a bill that will destroy the black independent cab driver.The medallion system is a tool for rich investors. For example, a medallion in new york goes for 400,000-700,000. Barry's ward has the highest unemployment in the country.

    • Tom

      WAit doesnt Barry have Council plates? Whats going on here why is he driving around with dead tags. I just got in and out of the DMV inspection and all in 30 mins

    • drez

      Purchased in PA or NY and has no title and dead tags...
      Was it ever reported as stolen? Has anyone checked a national database for that?