When LL was having a chat with lobbyist David Wilmot at the Wilson Building on Tuesday, his colleague Fred Cooke Jr. came up and asked LL to write “Peter Nickles is an asshole” in his next story.
Cooke represents Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr., who Attorney General Nickles is investigating for allegedly fundraising without a proper license and other misdeeds. Cooke is also a board member of Wilmot’s Individual Development Inc, from which Nickles is looking to extract a $240k fine and take away six of its group homes for the developmentally disabled.
In Cooke and Wilmot’s view, Nickles is a vindictive old crank who is abusing his power by punishing his enemies during his last weeks in office.
In Nickles’ view, he’s an honest crusader taking on political hacks who have had it coming for a long time.
“I have a sense that a lot these folks are bullies and are used to getting their way,” Nickles says. “Fred Cooke, he’s part of the machine. Wilmot, he’s part of the machine. Harry Thomas, he’s part of the machine. Marion Barry, he’s part of the machine.”
LL thinks Nickles just threw in Barry’s name because the Ward 8 councilmember happened to be speaking at a council hearing that was being broadcast in Nickles’ office.
In any event, those festive quotes seem like an appropriate way to sign off for the year. Happy holidays, everyone, LL’s off to go have a kid.