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As the D.C. Council gets set to throw the book at Councilmember Marion Barry, party leaders in his ward still haven’t released their own public statement on the troubled politician. The Ward 8 Dems are still debating internally on what to say or whether to say anything at all.
“I have no comment on that situation.” says Phil Pannell, a member of the executive board. “They asked everybody not to talk to the press because they are working on a statement. They haven’t arrived at a consensus.”
The Ward 8 Dems have mainly busied themselves over a more pressing matter. They’re focused now on possibly removing its president, Jacque Patterson. His offense? Giving an interview about the Ward 8 Dems’ deliberations over Barry.
“Well, you know I would really like to respond to you but I can’t,” Patterson says of his organization’s MIA status on the Barry matter. “The last time I made a statement, my executive board had a very, very hard time with me….I’m the president of Ward 8 Dems, and I can’t even make a statement that we’re deliberating…Nothing’s happening at this point. Now the focus is on me…. I have a group of people who are basically saying that—-I guess—-they don’t want a statement. They have effectively shut down our ability to even address the situation.”
Is this at all embarrassing? “Let me just say yes. Yes,” Patterson replies.
*file photo by Darrow Montgomery.