Loose Lips

Vince Gray on Alleged “Connections” to Jeff Thompson: Let’s See Them!

Vince Gray wants to see what's behind U.S. Attorney Ron Machen's allegations that there were "connections" between District officials and people working for alleged shadow campaign financier Jeff Thompson.

"If there's something untoward, let it be put on the table," Gray says.

Gray deserves to have Machen's evidence put out there, so he should take his complaints to the person who could most break the impasse: Vince Gray. With Attorney General Irv Nathan invoking attorney-client privilege to keep documents related to the city's $7.5 million settlement with a company owned by Thompson out of Machen's hands, Gray has publicly stayed out of the fight. But as mayor, he could direct Nathan to reach a compromise with Machen.

There's a personal privilege Gray could waive, too—in one letter to Machen, Nathan mentions discussing the settlement with Gray. Judging by a late November letter to Nathan, Machen is focusing on the mayor's office anyway.

In a letter to Machen written last month, Nathan insisted that there's nothing to see in the more than 5,000 documents, even saying that his office would release the documents publicly if a judge decided they weren't privileged. The mayor won't say why he hasn't told Nathan to waive the privilege, directing LL's questions about it to Nathan.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • truth hurts

    Gray and Nathan want Machen to do something he legally can't do: reveal details of evidence generated in grand jury proceedings. Nor would any competent prosecutor tip off a target about the evidence already uncovered so the target could craft a defense in advance of indictment.

  • truth hurts

    Nathan's suggested compromise (that judge Roberts should review over 5000 documents and make 5000 rulings as to whether each doc is privileged) isn't realistic. Would take another year to get those rulings.

  • drez


  • Marvin E. Adams

    We also hold this truth to be self-evident: The wheels of justice, may at times, seem excruciatingly slow, but they, indeed, do turn. Mayor Gray, be careful what you ask for...

  • Marvin E. Adams

    We hold this truth, to also be slef-evident: The wheels of justice, do, indeed, seem to turn excruciatingly slow. But they do, nonetheless, do turn. Mayor Gray, be careful what you ask for...