Obstruction Worker: Barry uses rare tools to slow Fenty initiatives.
Obstruction Worker: Barry uses rare tools to slow Fenty initiatives. Credit: Darrow Montgomery

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Marion Barry called Vince Gray to his hospital bedside last night to talk politics, Gray said today.

“If you get Marion Barry into a political discussion—-it’s like he just rose ten feet at that stage,” Gray, who missed the Ward 3 Democrats candidates’ forum to see the mayor-for-life, says.

Barry, who was hospitalized Monday night at Washington Hospital Center for a urinary tract infection just two weeks after finishing treatment for a blood infection at Howard University Hospital, gave advice about Gray’s re-election campaign for five hours.

“When he called and said, ‘I really need you to come,’ that was an easy one for me,” Gray said.

Barry offered Gray “lists and lists” of campaign advice, according to Gray, who declined to describe what that advice was beyond an admonition to work hard. Barry was so overflowing with political advice that he called Gray campaign political director Steve Glaude on the phone during Gray’s visit to talk to him at the same time.

Does this mean that Gray has passed the “Black Agenda” and “Ward 8 Agenda” tests necessary to win Barry’s endorsement for a second time? Not quite. Barry didn’t make an endorsement during their late-night talk, according to Gray.

LL’s waiting to hear back from Barry’s spokeswoman on his condition, and Gray said he didn’t know enough about Barry’s health to describe it. Still, if the shop talk energized Barry, it didn’t exactly do the same for Gray.

“I was frail after five hours of conversation,” Gray said.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery