Loose Lips

Catania Lands Endorsement From Early Tony Williams Backers

In 1998, Ward 7's Barbara and Paul Savage saw mayoral material in an unlikely place, helping found the movement to draft then-Chief Financial Officer Tony Williams for mayor. Now the Savages are throwing their support behind another candidacy so crazy it just might work: At-Large Councilmember and mayoral hopeful David Catania.

“They say, 'Well, David Catania gets angry," Paul Savage says. "You know what? I wish we had 12 other people on this Council who get angry about things that affect people in this city, like gentrification."

Savage and his wife, civic bigwigs in the Hillcrest neighborhood, also helped push fellow Hillcrester Vince Gray's early political career from the Ward 7 seat to the D.C. Council chairmanship. The Savages don't always strike gold—in 2006, they backed Linda Cropp's unsuccessful mayoral bid.

“There's not a candidate running who's ever run for office in the District that wouldn't love to have the endorsement of Paul and Barbara," says Catania campaign manager Ben Young.


After lamenting what he sees as the pushing of African-American residents into Wards 7 and 8, Paul Savage says he hopes the District will follow the lead of another majority African-American city, Detroit, and break with tradition in electing a white mayor.

“We’ve had black mayors from here to yonder, and the truth of the matter is we don’t have a strong fighter on the Council other than David Catania," Savage says.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • drez

    After lamenting what he sees as the pushing of African-American residents into Wards 7 and 8...
    The population in wards 7 and 8 are growing?

  • DCShadyBoots

    “We’ve had black mayors from here to yonder, and the truth of the matter is we don’t have a strong fighter on the Council other than David Catania," Savage says."

    I'd have to agree, Marion Barry isn't much of a fighter anymore. David Catania is smart and extremely capable. His record speaks for itself. I was glad to sign his petition yesterday. He has my vote.

  • Daddy Grace Fish Sandwich

    I can't stand this surly QUEEN! I will never vote for a racist gay white male from Kansas City, Missouri. Who is David Catania's parents and does he have any brothers and sisters? Most of us don't know anything about this man. He came to Washington to attend Georgetown University. Catania doesn't know how to talk to people because it's his way or the highway. Former ANC Ward 2 Commissioner Leroy Thorpe read Catania in a live Council hearing back in the 90's because Catania got nasty with Thorpe. White gay males and white hipsters can say whatever they want about Leroy Thorpe, however, Thorpe isn't afraid to speak his mind. What I see in this city, gay white males seem to have a chip on their shoulders. There's no racial equality within the gay community. Black gay men are treated like second class citizens by the mostly white gay community. Gay white males aren't a minority because they belong to the 220 million white majority population in the United States. It disturbs me when I hear white gay males compare their plight to that of blacks and Jim Crow/slavery. I'm sure many of the white slave owners were gay/bisexual racist and during the Jim Crow era in this country. When white gay males like Catania start comparing their plight to that of black gay men and become more sympathetic, I might come around. I am not voting for the witch, Muriel Bowser.

  • DCShadyBoots

    @Daddy Grace, beyond this mayoral race, you seem to be a bit overly consumed about the whole "white gay" issue. It is 2014 and most Americans have moved beyond race and sexual preferences. Particularly among young people. To illuminate race and sexual preference as a way to instigate outrage against a candidate is no different than when whites refer to President Obama, for instance, as the food stamp president. The objective is to use such classifications as prejudicial wedges.

    I agree that one of David Catania's weaknesses is his propensity to "pop off". However, I have seen him do it to blacks, whites, gays and straights, men and women. He's been called mean and he has been called surly. All fair. However, of what we have to choose from, he is the most intelligent and competent with a solid legislative record that stands on it's own merits. You know what you are getting with Catania. He gets things done. For certain I know that he will hold his appointees accountable.

    Of all that I am considering for our next mayor, race isn't one of them.

  • blkwrestl

    I do not know who the Savages are but if they are concerned about the residents in wards 7 and 8 they need to get off thier butts and see what is happening in 8. the only person who will make a difference is Carol Schwartz.

  • Justice

    It is time for a change. David Catania will do better than anyone who running for major now. Because of his compassion for people and his passionate approach to solve human suffering. It is not about color or sexual orientation. It is about hearing what people want, need, and deliverying.

  • Tight Lips

    What was the purpose of electing Bowser if people didn't feel she was good enough to beat Catania?

    Just doesn't make any sense. If you use the argument "She was better than the rest of the candidates" you have to be delusional.

  • Daddy Grace Fish Sandwich

    DCShadyBoots, I am not a homophobic. However, you are wrong about young people being more accepting of gays. I hear a lot of homophobic comments coming from young blacks, Salvadorans, Puerto Ricans, West Indians, Mexicans, Cubans, and sometimes whites. You are dreaming if you think the young generation is more accepting and we live in a color blind society. Race and skin color still matters in the United States of America. Take a walk in Columbia Heights/Adams Morgan and see how arrogant the privilege white hipsters act. They act as if they own the place and blacks are invisible. We still live in a segregated society and city. The same applies in the work area and school. I remember being in high school and the whites sat together in the lunch room and class rooms and the same applied to blacks. Ask any gay black man in DC, Atlanta, NYC, Baltimore, Philly, Boston, Miami and they will tell you how they are second class citizens in the mostly white gay community. Better yet read some of the racist comments in the Prince of Petworth and Washington Post coming from many young whites. On the issue of Obama, most whites in this country hate Obama based on his race and his policies. I voted for Romney, not President Obama. You still have mulatto blacks passing for white in 2014 because being white affords one white privilege in this country.

  • John

    Catania is a republican who left the party over one issue and became an independent. But he is still at heart a republican who believes in big business and will do nothing for wards 7 and 8. He has not shown compassion or caring for any of the city residents who are not making a big salary. Now that he is running for Mayor he pretends to care so transparent. Did agree to tax the yoga classes then decided to vote against the tax knowing it would pass at the council. What a phony. Catania = angry republican!

  • drez

    Catania raised over $50k for George W. Bush- the worst president in U.S. history.

  • DCShadyBoots

    It is true that Bowser won the primary. However, she won during a time when a record number of Democrats felt alienated enough to just stay at home. Voting fell just shy of 27 percent of registered Democrats in the city. That isn't an endorsement, it is a repudiation. Registered Democrats looked at the quality and leadership differences among the candidates and found none worth supporting so they just stayed at home. Bowser won her own ward with less than half the vote and she LOST her own precinct (those closest to her). As a result, this opened the door for someone outside of the Democratic party to energize those disenchanted voters. I can't think of a time since home rule when we have had such a weak candidate. Which leaves me but one choice, vote for the strongest candidate with a demonstrated record of getting things done. I just don't see this in Bowser. Her record on the Council all these years is to sign on to legislation championed by her colleagues.

    At the end of the day, this poor primary turnout served one positive purpose for me. To look at alternatives to Democrats.

  • Typical DC BS

    Sorry drez, Obumbler has overtaken Bush as worst President.

  • lost cause

    bowser won under the disgust of vince gray having done something wrong. which he did not and still hasn't been charged with. if they had something they would have charged him by now. the sad part is the residents were USED in this race by fenty's team to take Gray out...it worked but people are like now what...because they certainly don't want bowser for mayor.

  • Alum

    Daddy Grace -- "Take a walk in Columbia Heights/Adams Morgan and see how arrogant the privilege white hipsters act. They act as if they own the place . . ." I know that ignoring them is hard, but try. They're annoying, nothing more. And, in a few years, they'll be gone because age will kick in.

  • DCShadyBoots
  • Tight Lips

    If you were mad at Gray.... fine.

    But to select someone who you thought was better than Evans, Wells, and Orange but weaker than Catania? Clearly this doesn't make any sense.

    This is similar to "My girlfriend or boyfriend treated me wrong so I got drunk and hooked up with this random person, and now I'm worried because there may be a baby on the way".

    Dems have to face the music and realize they just messed up completely on this election....

  • the realDC

    Uhm people--stop being delusional and forgetting the facts. Bowser was elected by 12 points. She trounced Gray and will bury Catania. Clearly some are still sore over the loss - but really - Catania doesnt have a chance. This is and will stay a democratic city - and if you dont like it move to Utah.

  • Brett

    Why does Paul Savage care that DC 'break' with tradition in electing a white mayor?
    And did Jan Fenty's whiteness disappear in Adrian? Has anyone looked into Catania's ancestors to verify their whiteness? Along those lines, the US has yet to elect a Black President since Barack O'Bama is clearly an Irish midwesterner.
    Obviously DC is not a post-racial utopia, just look at the DCFD. But the infatuation of old timers with one-drop rules, peoples' skin pigmentation, or their sleeping partners will get us nowhere. Endorsements aren't that important either. If Tony Williams endorsed Catania (or Bowser), I'm not convinced that would get them elected. (Maaybe if Obama went all in for Catania, that might seal the deal, but that's not going to happen).

    What's important to me is who can appoint competent administrators, govern with all socioeconomic groups in mind, work effectively with the Council, and grow the city.

  • tony

    the realDC,

    You are the one who is delusional if you think that voters in this city are going to vote for Bowser merely because she is a democrat.

    Moreover, Bowser would never have won the primary election had it not been for another black man trying to hold down another black man. The fact is that Bowser won the primary with less than 46 percent of the vote. She lost nearly every black ward in the city. Now she has based her entire campaign on “party affiliation”.

    She has not articulated any vision for this city. She has not articulated one single fucking policy that will strengthen the black middle class. She has not articulated one fucking policy that would help the black community at all.

    In fact, she has not even taken any position on the school boundary debate. The only thing she has said is that she opposes all three of the Mayor’s proposals. BTW, Gray’s proposals concerning school boundaries were designed to afford poor black kids stuck in poor and inadequate neighborhood schools an opportunity to gain access to some of the better schools across this city. However, the new white comers and Bowser rejects this idea.

    This black woman actually supports the idea of restricting black students to their poor and inadequate neighborhood schools oppose to giving them access to better schools across the city. How in the hell can the black community trust a black woman who essentially believes in school segregation? How can the black community support a black woman who would deny black students access to a quality education merely because of their zip code? These are the sort of racist and backward policies that bigots like George Wallace supported. These are the sort of policies that black folks died to eliminate.

    Again, Bowser has very little black support in this city and her white support is fragile and conditional. The white voters across the board will support her opponent in November and they know it. The best thing black folks can do in this city is to support a well-coordinated WRITE-IN GRAY campaign. PERIOD!

  • Terry Miller

    I have a theory that the Post conspired to get Bowser elected, and then they are going to switch to Catania. I noticed Catania getting lots of good press from the POst, while Muriel is getting none.


    Great posts.

    Bowser is weak as wet toilet paper and she should lose.

    Catania is the best choice. Now he will not get elected unless Black folks get the courage and vote for the "best" candidate.

    Schwartz is all ego and old one at that. No thanks!!

  • SayWhat

    Tony and all the rest of you losers on this blog. Muriel Bowser is going to clean David's clock, so you can finish crying and whining now or you can wait until November 5, 2014 when you see the final count. Stop being sore losers, it is not a good fit.

  • tony


    Nearly 60 percent of the voters voted against Bowser. Thats the majority of voters who voted. Now, take your head out of Bowser's azz and stop being delusional.

  • DCShadyBoots

    Ummm-Hmmm, just like Adrian Fenty "cleaned Vincent Gray's clock". Sleep on that.

  • SayWhat

    Muriel Bowser is going to clean David's clock, I say it now and I say it on November 4th and just in case you all still are in denial, I say it again on November 5, 2014. Muriel Bowser is going to clean David Catania's CLOCK!

  • DCShadyBoots

    I'll say it again too....Ummmmmm Hmmmm.

  • SayWhat

    Isn't it something that David received a couple of Anthony Williams supporters support and Muriel Bowser received the one and only Anthony Williams endorsement. LMAO

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