Loose Lips

Council Investigate Jim Graham? Don’t Bet On It

The opinion mavens at the Washington Post are mad as hell that Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham tried to trade his support for a would-be lottery contractor in exchange for getting the developer he wanted on a Metro development in his ward.

A recent report commissioned by Metro found that Graham, a former Metro board chairman, violated that agency's conflict-of-interest rules but didn't appear to have broken any laws. Graham says he's done nothing wrong.

Now the Post editorial board and columnist Colby King are trying to goad the D.C. Council into doling out some legislative justice, or at least investigating whether Graham violated the council's own conflict-of-interest rules, too.

"How the D.C. Council reacts to evidence of misconduct documented in the report will be a measure of its promise to improve government integrity," the Post editorial board writes today.

And King says: "[Graham] deserves the council’s censure."

Don't hold your breath, Posties. If history is any guide, the council isn't going to do jack about Jim.

Rewind to June 2011, when news broke that Graham had once been offered, but rejected, a cash-filled envelope his then-chief of staff, Ted Loza, plopped on his desk. The money belonged to the FBI and was part of a ham-fisted attempt by the feds to try and bribe Graham, who likely was unaware of the money's origins but knew enough not to take it.

But Graham, under city rules, was obligated to do more than just reject the money. He was supposed to report "immediately" to the authorities "any information concerning conduct which he or she knows, or should know, involves corrupt or other criminal activity." Instead, Graham said nothing and kept Loza on staff until he was arrested several months later. Loza later pleaded guilty to accepting gratuities and went to prison for a few months.

What did the council do after these facts came to light? No censure. No discussions. Nothing.

To LL, Graham's horse-trading on the Metro/lotto contract looks pretty small bore in comparison to not reporting what looks very much like attempted bribery. If the council was serious about policing its own, wouldn't it have already done so?

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • HomeSchooled

    the council is not an investigative body. they have neither the time, staff, or expertise to investigate anybody.

    plus you would need an army to get through all this graham crap.

  • JackStarDC

    To reiterate:

    10/12/2012 1:36 PM EDT

    It has been said before on these pages but I will say it again. Jim "Taxi Cash" "AIDS Grift" Grajham is corrupt to the fiber of his being, far beyond anything anyone else in DC public life even comes close too. He is corrupt on the most petty of levels and in the grand things as well.

    This little Napoleon highjacked the community response to the AIDs epidemic and made it all about him and his personal self aggrandizement and enrichment. The lucre he has pilfered over the years makes "Fully Loaded" and Michael Brown look like the chump change players they are. He brought Whitman Walker to its knees, then turned it into his election campaign apparatus. Even on the way out ("don't let the door hit you Jim") he had the gall to take art and museum quality furniture that had been donated to the clinic as his own and then gave himself a 60K yearly consultants contract as his golden parachute.

    When Whitman Walker was teetering on the brink of collapse Graham ran interference in the Wilson Building blocking the attempts by the WWC board chair, et al to get a hearing from Mayor William's office all to protect his "legacy". Graham has known for some time that if the light of day was shown on his WWC tenure his public image would collapse.

    Now it would seem he just can't quit. The Ted Loza debacle should have been his clue to exit quietly but to that he was tone deaf. Now surely, if anyone ever did, deserves to be charged, tried, convicted, and imprisoned. It would seem a gaggle of lawyers will end up with all his ill gotten gain. He'll end a broken, impoverished old man without a friend in the world. No one deserves it more. All those good souls from whom he stole so much materially, intellectually, and spiritually will then be at peace.

    Go Jim, we don't care where, just go.

    It is interesting to note that during the recent international AIDS conference here Whitman Walker installed a photo portrait exhibit of AIDS heroes in the history of the clinic, Carl Schwartz, Hank Card, etc. Graham was ignored. I thought it telling.

    Also of the 600m estate Elizabeth Taylor left mostly to AIDs charity Whitman Walker got nothing even though the medical building bears her name. You can thank Graham for that too. The cost of Jim Graham to our community is staggering. Please but him away!

  • noodlez




  • joan

    Diamond Jim is going down!

  • Typical DC BS

    Hopefully this is the start of the toilet handle being pushed down to flush Jim "Cash & Carry" Graham down the drain with the rest of the shit.

  • JackStarDC

    "the council is not an investigative body." The Home Rule Charter gives the Council an oversight function which therefore gives it investigative authority. Digging into Graham would certainly keep everyone busy and help them sharpen their swords.

    The Council should look at this as an opportunity. Graham is so utterly corrupt that anything any of the others might do or have dome would look pale by comparison for a long time. Its not like Graham has made lots of friends among his colleagues with his warm, giving, personality. This isn't Sharon Ambrose folks!

    People will come out of the woodwork with suggestions as to who the Council may want to talk to. Jim's web is "city wide"!

  • Dupont Circler

    Can you say "perp walk"

  • Daddy Grace Fish Sandwich

    Queen of the media...

  • Welllllllll!!!!!

    Ya'll leave my Sweetie Pie alone.
    Go look for somebody else to pick on.
    Like Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan or sumpin'.

  • Welllllllll!!!!!

    Hey #3: That middle paragraph went waaaay over my head. Was that by design or can a brother get the low down?

  • truth hurts

    "Don't hold your breath"

    Dang, LL, you could have at least attributed that line to truth hurts -- you know, the guy who posted comment 1 after yesterday's "Morning Clicks".

    Even with One City, Dirty Harry, and Fully Loaded gone, the city council is pathetic.

  • Welllllllll!!!!!

    @#11: What's pathetic is the way some commenters seek the cheap thrill of attributes.

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  • Angelina

    Let's take his colorful glasses away, maybe he'll fess up!

  • ToTheContrary

    Ethics panel is investigating Elton Graham.

  • NE John

    And it seems to me, you lived your life, like a camel breaking wind

  • Alf

    Joan: "Diamond Jim is going down!"

    Tell us something we don't know!!

  • nowaitadaminit

    @NE John :16: ROFLMAO.