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  • Judging Vince Gray
  • Good morning sweet readers! The other day LL used the phrase: “It’s on like Donkey Kong,” in his daily roundup, only to find out that Nintendo is trying to trademark the line. There goes LL’s working title for his autobiography. News time:

    La Quinta Is For Suckers: District employees sure have nice taste in hotels—when taxpayers foot the bill, reports WAMU’s Patrick Madden. “In fact, since Mayor Adrian Fenty issued the travel freeze on October 4th, government credit card receipts show nearly 20 different agencies have hit the road … costing taxpayers nearly $70,000. … What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas—unless you’re using government credit cards. Last month, the city’s Fire and EMS department ran up eight charges at Harrah’s Hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. But they weren’t the only ones in Sin City. Later that week, D.C.’s Department of Transportation spent more than $1,200 at the Mandalay Bay resort. …  The Department of Homeland Security may stand out for it’s discriminating tastes. When employees traveled to Boston, a city with more than 200 hotels, they chose the Ritz Carlton. And on a trip to Little Rock, Arkansas they spent a $1,000 at the Peabody Little Rock. The hotel promotes itself as offering ‘unsurpassed luxury’ and ‘well-appointed guest rooms.’ The Ritz Carlton? Seriously? Was the whole hiring/travel freeze just a joke?

    AFTER THE JUMP: Fenty’s Future; GOP competition; Let’ s Hire Ex-Cons …

    I Can Be Your Hero, Baby: Yesterday was about celebrating heros who made sacrifices for good of this country. Playing a variation of that theme, Still Mayor Adrian Fenty would like to be thought of as a hero who sacrificed his political career for the good of education reform, reports Mike DeBonis in the Post. “Much as former president George W. Bush is now plying the talk-show circuit to plug his memoirs and try to recalibrate public impressions of his presidency, the outgoing District mayor is engaged in a campaign to color how his mayoralty will be remembered. Thus far, his message—that Fenty (D) made the tough decisions to reform a poorly performing urban school district and was subsequently decapitated by teachers unions out for revenge—has found a sympathetic audience. In an interview last month with a station based in New York, Fenty said he paid the price for being on ‘the leading edge of a movement’ for urban education reform. ‘If it’s a war,’ he said, ‘someone’s got to be at the front of the line, and they’ve got to get killed first. That’s how you win a war, is by going forward.’ … But the road to martyrdom that Fenty has embarked upon paves over matters that might better explain his loss: His alienation of natural supporters— including some of those who lauded his educational focus. His inability to sell many parents on the reforms he undertook. His refusal to adapt his reelection campaign to political reality. But the death-by-teachers-unions narrative persists.” DeBonis goes to try and get to the bottom of this supposed $1 million to teachers union spent on defeating Fenty, a number that’s only been provided to Politico via an anonymous source. Bottom line: “If the federation indeed spent $1 million to oust Fenty, what it bought wasn’t a new mayor so much as an unflattering story line about buying a new mayor.”‘

    With more on Fenty’s future is Ron Moten, who tells the Afro‘s Dorothy Rowley that Fenty while the mayor has received plenty of work offers, he will remain focused on enhancing education reforms established by former schools chancellor Michelle Rhee. Says Moten on Fenty: “To me, for all that he has done for residents and the way he was demonized during the campaign, he still showed a lot of class.”

    GOP Competition: Deborah Simmons at the Times reports on the D.C. Republican party’s plan on running someone during the special election to replace Almost Chairman Kwame Brown’s at-large seat. It looks like Patrick Mara, fresh off his school board win, might face some competition if he decides to run. “‘I’m giving running serious thought because a lot of people have expressed interest in me running,’ said Dave Hedgepeth, a Republican who endorsed Mayor Adrian M. Fenty and lost his Ward 3 council race against Democratic incumbent Mary M. Cheh, who backed [Almost Mayor Vince Gray.]”

    You’re Hired: The Examiner‘s Freeman Klopott reports that the D.C. Council is considering a bill that would prohibit city agencies from inquiring about a job applicants criminal history until after they’ve landed a job interview. ACLU is for it. Police Union is against it.

    Another day, another investigation into why an ambulance wasn’t where it was supposed to be. Mendo, are you seeing this?

    Nurses at Washington Hospital Center vote for a 1-day strike the day before Thanksgiving. Don’t get sick on that day.

    Peter Rosenstein writes Gray’s inauguration speech.

    President Obama‘s deficit reduction commission want you to have to pay to touch the moon rock.

    Gary Condit plans on writing book about not killing Chandra Levy.

    No public schedule for Fenty, Council.