Loose Lips

Gray Brings Legal Heavyhitter to Budget Autonomy Case

A supporter of the D.C. Council's side in the lawsuit over District budget autonomy floated a counterintuitive theory to LL recently: that defendant Vince Gray actually wants to lose, since a defeat of the mayor's more cautious approach to budget autonomy would mean more power for the city's government.

Well, apparently Gray's not that eager to lose. According to new documents filed by Gray's side in federal court this week, Gray has retained former Bill Clinton-era Solicitor General Seth P. Waxman as his personal counsel in the case.

Unluckily for the backers of the budget autonomy vote, Waxman is no pushover. Besides being solicitor general, he successfully argued the Supreme Court case that gave habeas corpus rights to Guantanamo Bay inmates and was on the shortlist to replace Justice David Souter on the court. Always-enthusiastic business newsletter Bisnow calls him a "high court gunslinger."

Waxman didn't respond to LL's request for comment, but District taxpayers shouldn't worry about his billable hours. OAG spokesman Ted Gest tells LL that Waxman, like the Council's outside attorneys, is working pro bono.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • tony

    The voters who want and believe that they deserve a third option in the General Election should just write in Vincent Gray.

    We have nothing to lose. The worst thing that could happen is that either Bowser or Catania would win which would be the case in any event.

    If enough people write in Vincent Gray then election night may be very interesting.

    You never know!

  • joan

    what a jerk - he can read about the outcome wearing his orange jumpsuit

  • tony


    The Gray's supporters have every right to write Vincent Gray's name in since we don't see the alternatives as viable. And, that's what they should do!

    There are certain people in this city who wish to force voters to accept people of their liking. FUCK THAT!

  • PWebbIV

    I'm in complete agreement with Tony. Ron Machen held his press conference on March 10. This is now May 2. If there have been no charges filed against Vince Gray by Labor Day, I think the voters should consider a serious write-in campaign for the current mayor.


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