IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
Fully Loaded It? Fully Refund It! A Closer Read of Kwame’s SUV Contract Exclusive Video of Kwame’s SUV Delivery
Good morning sweet readers! What’s the deal, is it spring or not? News time:
Diamond in the Back: It’s a Kwame “Fully Loaded” Brown extravaganza in this a.m.’s round-up. First we have Brown doubling down on the already debunked assertion that he didn’t request a fully loaded SUV. In an interview with WUSA9’s Bruce Johnson, Brown says he never asked for an extended Navigator with TVs in the back. When Johnson asked if it was his staff’s fault he wound up with such a fancy ride, Brown says: “It’s a possibility that someone said hey, ‘he wants it fully loaded,’ and that’s why I take full responsibility.” Are you kidding? Does Kwame not read the Washington Post? Because how did he miss the front page story showing that his staff sent multiple emails on Brown’s behalf specifically asking that his Navigator have a power moonroof, rear entertainment system, and aluminum wheels. The next bit of Kwame fabrication comes courtesy of NBC4’s Tom Sherwood, who goes to Brown’s house for an interview and b-roll of the now infamous Navigator. Kwame tells Tom that he had no idea about the Navigator’s costs and he’s going to do everything he can to get rid of it. WTOP has more on Brown seeking to return the vehicle. Reality check: Brown’s office told LL the same thing a month ago when he first broke the story. If Brown had really been serious about getting rid of the Navigator back then, why hasn’t he already done so? Brown also fibs to Fox5’s Karen Gray Houston, when he tells her about rejecting the first Navigator because of its interior color: “They said they ordered it wrong and that they said they would clearly order another vehicle and they did.” Also false! Look at the Post story and it shows that Brown was given the choice of keeping the first SUV with gray interior. He choose not to keep it. That’s three TV stories and three instances of Brown not telling the truth. Keep digging Kwame! Your creditability must be down there some where.
Fox5 also visits Brown’s house and gets the man on the street’s reaction. Vincent Orange sounds off to Houston. Gary Imhoff reminds us of Sharon Pratt Kelly‘s taxpayer funded makeup artist and its parallels to the current brouhaha. And be sure and read LL’s multiple entries on Navigatorgate.
AFTER THE JUMP: Mary Cheh’s Subaru Costs Taxpayer $3,700 a month (Kidding); Pack It In, Vince; OCF Has Gotta Go…
Don’t Leave Us Fenty: There are three stories this morning slamming Mayor Vince Gray’s leadership style. The first comes in the form of Harry Jaffe’s paean to former Mayor Adrian Fenty. “Fenty hired top-notch people, and he ran the government as a meritocracy. Vince Gray has often hired agency heads because of their connections and his familiarity with them. Fenty’s critics tagged him with being brusque and brash, but the man got things done and made the bureaucracy perform for residents. So far, Gray has made the government perform for his friends—and their kids.” Also, the American Spectator‘s RiShawn Biddle lays into Gray pretty hard, saying his early appointments and plodding style show a governing style we need to be worried about. “Gray will face his biggest test in the coming months as the District searches for Rhee’s fulltime replacement to run the such district. Given how he essentially ran Rhee out of the job, few reformers will want to take her place. The candidate most likely to continue Rhee’s efforts would be her protégé, Interim Chancellor Kaya Henderson, who has already been backed for the job by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and many school reformers. But given Gray’s need to keep the AFT in his corner (and the wrongheaded decision to put new union president [Nathan] Saunders on the search committee), keeping Henderson may not even be a possibility.” The last story is Examiner columnist Jonetta Rose Barras‘ attack on Gray, saying his actions on the United Medical Center and the school voucher program show that he doesn’t care about poor people.
You Really Can’t Find a Better Topic, Jo-Ann?: The Washington Post‘s editorial board takes Kwame to task over the SUVs, really hammers Gray hard on his questionable hiring, voices its displeasure with the Office of Campaign Finance for not finding anything wrong with the Democratic State Committee’s longstanding practice (like 20 years longstanding) of having its meetings at the Wilson Building. “So blatant is the practice that the state Democratic committee posted on its Facebook page a picture of workers stuffing fundraising letters in the Wilson Building.” Oh no, not Facebook!
In Other News: Let’s hold Wal-Mart accountable. Post office to be renamed after Dorothy Height today, will Fenty be at the ceremony? Ron Moten: anti-murderer. LDP likes what Uniontown may beget. DCist says Gray and Brown better cut their own budgets. There are now only 10 at-large candidates, as Calvin Gurley has not made the cut.
Gray sked: Height post office ceremony, 2:30 p.m., next to Union station.
Council sked: Five different committee hearings today, most start at 10 a.m.