Loose Lips

Jim Graham Punished

Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham appeared chipper and was mostly smiles this morning as his colleagues gave him the legislative equivalent of putting a toddler in time out and taking away his or her favorite toy.

The D.C. Council voted 11-2 to reprimand Graham for his actions related to a Metro development deal and the city's lottery contract. The vote comes three weeks after the Board of Ethics and Government Accountability said there was "substantial" evidence that Graham had violated the city's code of conduct when he tried to leverage his vote on the lottery contract to benefit a campaign donor interested in the Metro development. The Council also voted 10-2, with Councilmember Vincent Orange abstaining, to strip Graham of his oversight of the city's Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration.

Graham choose not to speak before the Council voted to reprimand him. Instead, Graham's defense was left to Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry, who is apparently still sore from being censured by the Council three years ago. Prior to the vote, Barry handed his colleagues copies of the the text of the 14th Amendment and used his time on the dais to decry what he says was a punishment devoid of due process.

"If it happens to me today, if it happens to Jim Graham tomorrow, it can happen to anyone next week," Barry says.

Graham did speak up to defend what he said was a stellar record overseeing the city's booze board, and then he explained that he was not pushing back against his punishment—as he'd indicated last week he might do—because it was clear to him that he couldn't avoid it. He sued the ethics board last week trying to prevent the Council from considering its report in today's vote, which a judge declined to do; Graham's lawsuit against the board is continuing.

"I think it's time to put this behind us," Graham said.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

Comments

  1. #1

    Graham is a punk for whining about due process and then taking the fifth. Orange is a punk for abstaining from the second vote. Barry may be wrong, but at least he's not a punk. He manned up and explained his no vote.

  2. #2

    i must be ill because i agree with th completely.

  3. #3

    Ms Graham got of very very light,They completely overlook the fact that Graham an elected Official who's Cheif of Staff handed him a money bribe, Graham didn't accept it, allthough it was a sting,he neglected to inform Law Enforcement of the attempted bribery of a Public Ofical, didn't fire him and let him resigned after he was arrested, yes a law abiding public offical would have fired his Cheif of staff on the spot at the same time notifying the Police. I guess since the over paid Councilmans fail to do their jobs, its left up to the Ward-1 voters to do their job and retire Graham.I am betting on the residents of Ward-1.

  4. #4

    These are the same fools that supported Harry & Kwame during their mishaps..

    The same fools that will not vote on outside employment... Cant take these bammas serious

  5. #5

    Graham has no stellar record on the ABC Board. He used the chairmanship to strong arm and sharp elbow every business up for review. He used his position with ABRA oversight to do the exact same things he did with the metro contract. Just ask U Street businesses about Peter Feather and Jim Graham.

    Graham is easily the most disliked Councilmember by his peers and the Ward is not going to stand for his bs much longer. I wish he would realize how much he is disliked and just do us a favor and go away, because even though he is as lame a duck as they come,he can still do a whole lot of damage before he is gone.

  6. #6

    Mendeslon is the biggest punk, he apologized for the reprimand. Graham broke laws and gets away with it, bullshit at the highest level!!

    Ward 1 needs new leadership, the old queen needs to go to JAIL!!

    I am still holding out hope the US Attorney will charge Graham and send him away!!

  7. #7

    It is time for him to go. He needs to move on and let someone less ethically challenged to take over.

  8. #8

    @WHAT-I WOULD THINK GAYTANIA IS THE LEAST LIKED COUNCILMEMBER WITH THE BLUSTERING BLOWHARD ORANGE A CLOSE 2ND. THE SAD THING IS THIS IS DEBATABLE!!

    GRAHAMSTANDER GOT OFF LIGHT!
    HOPEFULLY THE GOOD CITIZENS OF WARD 1 WILL MAKE A STATEMENT COME ELECTION TIME.

    GO FIGURE "MAYOR FOR LIFE" STILL STANDING UP FOR (IN HIS OPINION) THE DISENFRANCHISED!!!!

    ONE CITY.

  9. #9

    It's time for the Evil Queen to abdicate.

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