Loose Lips

Bowser to VO: Quit Your “Political Pandering”

Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser just sent a letter to her colleagues (but mostly to At-Large Councilmember Vincent Orange) asking them not to support any emergency legislation having to do with ethics and good government.

Bowser is holding a committee hearing later this month on the multitude of ethics-related legislation and has promised to introduce a comprehensive ethics package by the end of this year. Bowser says the hearing is a "critical step" that shouldn't be skipped over.

Orange apparently has other ideas. He's indicated he's going to introduce emergency legislation at tomorrow's council session to set up an ethics "task force" to study the city's ethics laws and recommend changes.

"Now is the time for a serious, deliberate discussion of the nine bills that sit in my committee, not for knee-jerk solutions or political pandering," says Bowser.

Orange couldn't immediately be reached for comment, but Bowser's indirect dig isn't the first time someone's accused him of pandering.

Update: Orange tells LL that he's fully supportive of Bowser's efforts, but says he also wants a separate task force, headed by the attorney general, to develop its own suggestions for ethical reform independent of the council.

“There’s a feeling in the public that this body cannot police itself," says Orange.

Despite Bowser's objections, Orange says he still plans on bringing up his emergency legislation for a vote tomorrow.

  • dcHomie

    Dc Voters need to do it like Wisconsin and take over the Wilson Building! Our councilmembers are self-serving and only for the advancement of their political agenda and personal bank accounts.


    The DC City Council does not need to hold anymore hearings on ethics, misconduct or just plain corruption.
    The House and Senate have Ethics Committees that have been very professional in taking action against Members of Congree who betray the public trust.

    Ask them for their rules and implement them and start taking action against members of the Council who betray the public trust now, not the end of the year or next year. Councilmember Bowser is not concerned about corruption and should step aside if this issue is to hot for her to handle now.

  • Southeast Ken

    dcHomie, you can add in Congress too. The citizenry of the United States need to take to the streets with torches and run all those spineless self serving politicians off Capitol Hill. D.C. voters need to take to the streets by the thousands and running Mayor Gray and the D.C. council out of the Wilson Building like in the old Frankenstien movies.

  • Skinsfan83

    Facts dont lie, the council honestly cannot govern themselves and the truly need someone to hold them accountable for their actions. Bowser if smart would allow for a big power to hold rank over the council because if she messes this thing up, her chance for re-election will fade away. Many people are lining up to take her seat anyway.

    With all the scandals coming out of that council, they need to drop cool and allow themselves to be monitored to show they can comply with the law like the rest of the citizens.

  • michaeliceman

    I agree with MB on this one - from a political perspective.

    We can argue until the cows come home about whether Council can police itself, etc. That is a bigger issue than this (and I agree that it cannot). Anywhoo....

    In this case, why would VO introduce emergency legislation when he knows that MB's committee is already sitting on 9 bills about the same subject? It is an "eff you" move and poltical pandering at its finest (i.e. introducing legislation that you KNOW you do not have the votes for just for the grandstand effect). If he were serious about ethics reform, he would work with the committee that is charged with getting it done....Not go off half-cokcked with some crap you know has no legs.

  • Skinsfan83

    @michaeliceman if you paid attention to the At-Large race, I believe that was one of the things VO said he was going to address the ethics situation and that he was going to introduce emergency legislation. In hindsight, thats just him sticking to his word.

    MB wants to play it off like she is going to set the record straight because she wants to be praised throughout the city like how LL and all of Ward 6 praises Tommy Wells smh.

    Her seat is on the line and what better way for her to gain momentum during election season than to be the one to settle the score with Ethics....

    Dont think MB is doing this for the betterment of DC. She is clearly playing politics and wants to be the sole winner of this ethics reform so she can save her seat

  • truth hurts

    Agree with michaeliceman and mb on this one. Vo is grandstanding.

  • Anonymous, Too

    "I believe that was one of the things VO said he was going to address the ethics situation..."

    Now there's an oxymoron--Vincent Orange and ethics.

    Where's Karnac the Magnificent when we need him?

    Question: Sounds like a fruit but is really a pandering grandstander.
    Answer: Vincent Orange

  • stinkinthinkin

    VO ain't no BoZo but MB is stickee.

  • BiteMe

    lmao show me the proof that Orange is corrupt like Kwame, Vince Gray, Harry Thomas, Yvette Alexander, Jim Graham and/or Michael Brown?????

    Sounds like y'all are praying for something that doesn't exist

    Im sure whatever Bowser's plan includes will not be more effective, that having the big dogs breathing down your back making sure you don't fuck up.

    Bowser is a puppet of Fenty, how in the hell does she even have oversight on Ethics?

  • Samantha

    If it is Bowser, Fenty is passing her the bill as drafted by Nickles . Then she has to lock herself in a closet with Josh Lopez and Ron Moten to rehearse her reading with Skinner as her coach ! Reading Is Fundamental minus Comprehension !Did they check her residency when she ran for office ?

  • NE John


    Woof woof

  • Marciela

    Who is Muriel Bowser that she should grandstand? She only has that committee because Fully Loaded is spiteful. VO might be grandstanding too but who on that council doesn't?

    That entire council is a JOKE. The only members who are not being investigated are Catania, Cheh and Mendelson. Even Barry too and how odd is that? Fully Loaded is a hot mess. Then you have Jim "Goodwill, Not Bribe" Graham, Jack "Caught On Tape" Evans, Harry "Checks" Thomas, Michael "Poker" Brown, etc.

  • John

    Muriel Bowser was given this committee as the mess of redoing the ethics rules for the council came in at the same time. She is an attorney and a thoughtful person and I am sure will do a good job with the rules. The problem is enforcement once the rules are rewritten. The old rules are not that bad just they are not followed. I think VO needs to work with Bowser and stop acting like a one-man show, but get concerned about getting the job done not just feeding his ego. Then see if Bowser and VO can sell it to the council as a whole who will resist controls and ethics. Remember the next election, this egotistic council were elected and that was based on popularity not on who wanted to do a good job.

  • Skinsfan83

    @Marciela VO isnt being investigated. Cheh was Browns right hand "woman" until all his scandals were reported. Im sure she has some skeletons in her closet as well.

  • Drez

    Yup. Agree with michaeliceman pretty much exactly.
    VO is grandstanding.
    His ass needs do some real work instead of perpetually running for mayor or council chair.
    He's making himself look unserious.
    For the record- I voted VO not Kwame in the last go around. So I would he a natural supporter- if only by default- tho stunts like this make me want a third option.

  • Skinsfan83

    @Drez how is this a stunt, and during the At-Large race this was one of the things he said he would address once elected? Are DC residents so used to broken promises that when someone on the council follows through on their statement we hate on him?

    If so that is totally backwards. If Bowser was truly sincere about making changes to the Ethics situation, she would be in the forefront addressing these situations. Not sitting back until someone else decides to make light of the situation then add her 2 cents. She was quiet during the whole Brown & Thomas situation and now wants to be the savior of the Council Ethics.

    This council needs to get things done not walk around holding hands and showing the world they can work together. That time is long gone. The citizens deserve more and deserve someone who will push the envelope.

    Citizens complained about the "establishment" and now that VO is stepping up to the plate pushing an agenda that is important, you all hate on him because he isnt working with his colleagues? What type of backwards sh*t is that?

    If you hate the establishment so much, why shoot down someone who cuts to the chase and wants to create a system so the establishment can stop pulling these tricks over our head.

    No one is commenting on VO's stance to establish term limits, or make the council position a full-time job. When will get out of our feelings, and stop these b*tch fits and think of the bigger picture.

    If 3/4's of a council are in scandals that honestly means they cannot police themselves. No matter how your argue the issue, its not in the best interest of the city. Put someone above them that will make them accountable and make sure they are now abusing their powers. Thats the type of action I want out of my elected officials.

  • GOPUnite

    The council is a joke. They all need to be under investigation.

  • Wrack

    @John: Bowser is not an attorney. Her council bio says "Councilmember Bowser earned a Bachelor of Arts in History from Chatham College and a Master's degree in Public Policy from American University."

  • Marciela

    Skinsfan83, you are right. I forgot to list him.

  • Skinsfan83

    @Marciela if you forgot to list him what is he being investigated for? Where is the article that shows there is an investigation?

    Your the same one who said Chavous was involved in the Lottery Scandal which took place when he was still a Law School student at Howard.

    Your statements are suspect

  • michaeliceman


    Let me explain why I think it is political pandering.

    Before that…..let me say that I agree with VO’s position on term limits and full time status….and I even said that last week in another post/comment.

    Back to the subject. I remember that he made the promise on the campaign trail. Ok, so VO introducing emergency legislation outside the Committee structure is him keeping a campaign promise. Still can’t argue with that.

    However, VO is no neophyte. He knows that by introducing the measure this way, it has very little hope of passing in its current form. In fact, I would be surprised if the Council (and the Chair) did not tell him to work with MB. So….given that VO is aware that his measure might be DOA, why introduce it? Because now he can SAY that he introduced it and he will make sure we know it at every opportunity. Hence, the grandstand effect. That is how I define political pandering.

    Now, who knows whether MB is the right person for the job? However, the truth of the matter is that her committee is charged with government operation. At least until she loses her seat or the committee is re-assigned, any meaningful ethics piece has to come through her committee. Givne what happen to recent ethics bills, that should be clear to everyone.

  • Skinsfan83

    @michaeliceman you introduce it to show the citizens you are a man of your word. Regardless of whether its passed or not, the fact that he made a promise during the election and followed through with it, is what I respect. You cannot say the same for other councilmembers as in their word being their bond.

    Thats what politicians do, they accomplish things and remind people that they made it happen. They have to do that because in this society people forget quickly the accomplishments and dwell on the shortcomings.

    If you have kids, and they complain all day about why they have to do stuff, one of the main arguements a parent will bring up EVERYTIME is the amount of bills they pay and how much they have to do for the kids. Its the same scenario because people forgot too easily.

    We have a council full of broken promises, and people who have betrayed public trust. I think for once people should atleast be able to say although he is a wildcard, VO follows through.

    If MB seriously cared about the Ethics, should would atleast hear VO out and see if both there plans will complement each other instead of bashing him. After all, the last thing the council DESERVES is the ability to look after themselves when it comes to Ethics. And with the amount of scandals taking place, it should be an Emergency because you got crooks looking out for the betterment of families, jobs, education, and our future.

  • michaeliceman


    So you give him credit for making a promise about something THAT he knew when he made the promise would not fly? Ok...but that is a low standard.

    Well, you do realize that the COTW votes on Emergrency legislation? Seems to me that he had a better chance in committee if he really wanted something passed. And according to LL, the emergency legislation was just voted down 12-1. So the only victory he can claim is to SAY that he introduced something...although he knew it would not pass.

    I understand your feeling about the Council and I agree somewhat. I was limiting my opinion to this issue of introducing emergency legislation.



  • Skinsfan83

    @michaeliceman people protested the Troy Davis situation. To the vast majority, everyone knew GA was going to execute him regardless of who stepped in.

    Now that the dust has settled, America realizes our justice system and the death penalty needs to be evaluated because things arent right.

    Regardless of what others may think, if you feel something needs to be brought to the limelight you should address it.

    Now what if Orange introduces a bill about Term Limits & Full Time Employment, and gets voted down? Will you have the same opinion? or will you think otherwise because you agree with him?

    You just witnessed first hand the establishment vs the outsider. Bowser bashed Orange for introducing a bill, not because the bill makes since or because the council needs a task force. In hindsight thats childish. She wants bragging rights, and she needs a pivitol moment in her time on the council, or else she knows she is gone. If thats not the establishment working, I dont know what is....

  • drez

    Creating another ethics committee is a stunt because there is already an ethics committee and Bowser chairs it.
    If VO wanted to be taken seriously, he wouldn't create a second competing body to study and provide recommendations on the same damn thing the first one is.
    It's grandstanding for grandstanding's sake- pure and simple.
    When VO is at his next campaign stop talking about how he tried to do this or that for ethics, all I'm gonna remember is that he was too busy grandstanding to sit at the table and contribute to something that had any damn chance of becoming law.

  • DC Now

    What a waste time. This is like letting the inmates renovate the jail, please members get to work on real issues.

    Bowser- Georgia Ave is falling apart what are you doing? What is your plan? Kennedy St looks like crap? What are you doing about that? Ward 4 needs REAL leadership, not 4 more years of Bowser playing politician! The ward 4 council intern has to go!

    Please can we get some quality candidates for Ward 4.....damn, we have some talented folks in 4!

  • michaeliceman


    Regarding the Troy Davis issue, I am not a big fan of sweeping apples to oranges comparisons. I am not sure that comparing Troy Davis’ situation to a local city council ethics issue is helpful.

    Outside vs. the establishment? To cast VO as an outsider is a stretch. That is his new schtick and it seems to be winning people over. But VO is one of the 3 most politcally savvy people on the Council. He can play the game with the best of them. LOL!!!

    Say what you want about MB ( I have no opinion of her personally), but all CMs want “turf.” The committee is her turf and she will defend it. Heck, just a couple months ago, VO was openly lobbying for the ED post when HTJ let it go. Why? Because VO wants his turf too. Well, when you cannot get your own turf, you step on other people’s. Ethics is the hot issue this campaign cycle and VO is going to hitch is wagon to it. I am not mad at him and he may sincerely care about ethics reform, but to think that this is not poltically driven is naïve. IMO

  • candycane1

    Ok somebody give me some feedback and correct me if I'm wrong. Wasn't VO on the council when it overturned the people's vote for term limits? Did he or did he not vote to overturn the people's vote? I believe he voted against it. If I'm correct then everything he does is grandstanding. He's acting on flavors of the month to be impressive.

  • Drez

    He voted to overturn term limits.

  • Skinsfan83

    @candycane1 please tell me one politician that has not changed their stance on a topic during their time in office. This is damn near pathetic, you have never made a decision then had a change of heart? The fact of the matter is that IN THIS VERY MOMENT Term Limits & Full Time jobs are a major issue in the city and it is being addressed. Stop being such a jack-ass and harping over what was done in the past because right now the issue is on the table. Now if this council votes it down, who are you going to blame? The guy that made the right decision and decided that its the right thing to address, or the other 12 councilmembers who still have ego problems and vote it down?

    Get off your high horse and use your brain instead of your weak ass heart.

    You all act like the ex-girlfriend who when they see the new girl you tell her all the downfalls of your relationship with that guy. Move on grow up and understand that the man is trying to push law that is logically sound to the issues that are taking place in DC TODAY!

  • candycane1

    Such a foul mouth and such anger. Don't need to sit on a high horse, got a nice comfortable chair. My weak heart will last a lot longer than your venimous one. My point was and still is: He voted against the people he represented and now expects that those same people should take him seriously and at 175K if he had his way. The right decision was made back then!!Yes he grandstands and postures himself for the what he thinks is the flavor of the week. So don't worry about my brain or my heart because they work just fine and will continue to carry the opinions and beliefs that I choose. If that bothers you so much then that's too damn bad. Don't talk me about growing up and moving on. Talk that when you learn to respect another's opinion that is different from yours. BTW: Because my opinion of VO is different from yours does not make you right.

  • candycane1

    Sorry typo!! That word is VENOMOUS!!!