Loose Lips

The Politics of Party Hopping: Who Was Where Last Night

Last year, when At-Large Councilmember Vincent Orange won the special election, then-Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr. showed up to make nice. Thomas had supported Orange's opponent, Sekou Biddle, but came to Orange's victory party to congratulate his fellow Ward 5-er and pose for pictures.

LL left that party relatively early, but heard  Mayor Vince Gray, who had also backed Biddle, came late to the party to congratulate Orange, as well.

What a difference a year makes. Thomas is almost certainly headed to prison, and most pols are in everyman/everywoman-for-themselves mode as the Wilson Building nervously waits to see if (or is it when?) the other shoe drops in the federal investigations of Gray and Council Chairman Kwame "Fully Loaded" Brown.

This year, the only pol LL saw at Orange's almost-victory party (he's likely to beat Biddle again, but the votes are too close to make it official) was Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham, who was the only sitting councilmember to give Orange a formal endorsement. Graham made a brief appearance at the shindig, leaving before Orange even showed up.

Meanwhile at Biddle's party in Park View, LL's bosses spied Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser, who made a quick pitstop before heading right back out the door. Ward 6 Councilmartyr Saint Tommy Wells, who endorsed Biddle, was also there.

As for Brown, LL's heard he hit the parties of each of the winning incumbents who cakewalked to victory: Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans, Bowser, Ward 7 Councilmember Yvette Alexander, and Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry.

LL didn't see Brown at Orange's party.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

  • DC=DistrictofCorruption

    It is amusing and frustrating to see just how some seedy politicians are allowed to play the local media. Why didn't LL at the after party ask Tommy Wells why he worked so hard for Biddle -- the same guy who last year was hand-picked and publicly anointed by Harry Thomas, Marion Barry, Kwame Brown and Mayor Gray -- when it was Orange, a veteran politician, who first noted that Kwame lived beyond his means and owed more money than he makes each year? Aren't Biddle public backers the same guys who are at the core of corruption in this city? Why would Wells - the self-annointed righteous one on the Council and the least favorite of Kwame himself - even stick his neck out for someone like that? It is obvious that Wells is looking out for himself and ahead. His campaigning for Biddle has little to do with integrity or a better city. It is about drunken ambition (no pun intended). Wells is trying to position himself to fill the seats if and when Kwame and Gray are forced out. Orange is a big problem for him. So he needed to eliminate this threat. Biddle is a pawn. But stay tuned. Wells' day is coming soon.

  • KeepinItReal

    @DC. What you say makes perfectly good sense and warrants serious contemplation. That said. Don't expect much from the student journalist who wrote this piece. There is no such thing in balanced reporting here. The writers opinion is all that matters. If a fact doesn't jive with that opinion the fact is ignored or distorted and in some instances explained away.

    It is unbalanced reporting like this that drives the polorization of the city along the lines of race and classs. There is a sinister distrust of the media within large parts of the African American community because of the unbalanced reporting. Not because they seek to ignore unethical lapses of their own representatives.

    You've pointed out valid questions about Wells, I've pointed out issues with David Catania and his working as a general counsel for a company, M.C. Dean (100,000/yr), that is regularly approved for a 20 million dollar city contract that he votes on, others have pointed out inapprpopriate activities of both Jack Evans and Tommy Wells, mum is the word from the City Paper and the Washington Post. Many African Americans cannot take seriously their claim of allegiance to cover unethical activities when that coverage is unbalanced in only one direction.

    Just saying.

  • cutthecrap

    @keepinItReal & DC. well put. You two lessened some key strokes for me. I could not have said it any better.