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Good morning and a HAPPY VETERANS DAY to all you LLDers. Anyone out there seen Carol Schwartz?

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT—-“Va. GOP Uses ‘Senator’ Marion Barry in Fundraising Pitch”

Council passes budget gap-closing plam, with nearly $50 million in cuts over and above what Mayor Adrian M. Fenty had proposed. Housing advocates and WIN not so happy about that. Marion Barry raises a fuss and gets applause from the crowd, but ends up voting for the plan anyway. Lame duck Schwartz is a no-show (she did attend a Thursday closed-door meeting on the plan). WaPo story; Examiner story; WaTimes story

WaTimes: “D.C. residents trying to see President-elect Barack Obama’s inauguration are worried that they will be left without tickets because the distribution system favors states with full voting rights….States with a smaller population than the District, including Wyoming, would conceivably get three times as many tickets.”

After reports of a school out of control, Hart MS principal is fired. Kisha Webster tells Bill Turque in the WaPo that “she had been ‘set up’ by District officials. She said she was put in charge of the Anacostia middle school without the resources made available to other struggling schools.”

GODDAMN MEDIA—-Said Webster, “If I had been able to keep things quiet, I’d still be there.”

Children’s Hospital plug-pull saga hits a Superior Court hearing, but no ruling yet, Keith Alexander reports in WaPo. “In court yesterday, [CNMC lawyer Kenneth] Rosenau said that according to hospital records, the parents have not visited the boy since late July….’That is an outright lie,’ [parents’ lawyer Jeffrey] Zuckerman said after the hearing.” Also WTOP story.

SASHA AND MALIA WATCH—-Michelle visits GDS! USA Today consults SBPE member Mary Lord on some possible DCPS schools. Nick Gillespie at Reason and conservative Catholic outfit First Things both get in on the blather, as does Washingtonian and Teacher Magazine and bloggers gwadzilla, Jay P. Greene. Meanwhile, crowds gather at White House to watch Barack.

Wall Street Journal does boilerplate Michelle Rhee story, complete with boilerplate parent quote from…Paul Strauss!

Former Colo. governor Roy Romer weighs in on the Rhee-Obama relationship: “Because of the uniqueness of federal governance over the District of Columbia, it will be difficult for some of Rhee’s reforms to succeed without the support of Congress and the Obama Administration….Can Obama help Rhee? Yes, he can.”

Education Week ponders how unions feel about Obama’s praise for Rhee and Joel Klein.

Aspen Institute posts video of Rhee talk.

ALSO ON THE GODDAMN MEDIA BEAT—-nonprof DC VOICE wants more positive DCPS stories! Nakamura nails it: “Of course, the fact that DCPS is one of the lowest-performing systems in the nation, that it’s losing up to 5,000 students a year, and that public charter schools are growing at a fast clip probably means that a lot of the coverage is going to seem ‘negative’ no matter what.”

HuffPo has perhaps the most thoughful piece on SecEd speculation, from Alexander Russo.

City gets 33 new “light plow vehicles” and a plow-driving simulator, and makes other improvements to plow strategies, WTOP reports. PLUS: Beet juice is back!

A reminder from WABA: Bike safety bill hearing Friday at 2 p.m.

Capitol Visitor Center to open, at last, on Dec. 2. Twenty-six bathrooms! AP story.

IN WAPO BRIEFS—-“A D.C. Superior Court jury heard opening statements yesterday in the trial of a Phoenix man charged with setting fire to a strip club after being ejected for photographing a female dancer”; “The decline in D.C. public school enrollment is not quite as steep as an initial September count indicated, officials said yesterday….The total still represents the steepest annual decline—-6.5 percent—-since…1999”; “Two armed robberies on Northwest Washington streets yesterday led to a pursuit through the city and a crash near New York Avenue and North Capitol Street. Two suspects were taken into custody, D.C. police said.”

Marc Fisher answers his own electoral questions.

CQ has some thoughts on juvenile justice in D.C.

More on the armed robberies.

Alert on Georgetown sex assault.

Hawaii inaug ball is the hot ticket, reports Nikita Stewart.

WJLA-TV/NC8: “The man accused of threatening to go on a killing spree at Howard University says he never intended to hurt anyone….he just wanted to get paid.”

SHW-Hadley has a new CEO.

D.C. COUNCIL TODAY—-No events today.

ADRIAN FENTY TODAY—-8:15 a.m.: guest, Morning Joe, MSNBC.