On September 17,2013, the Council voted 9 to 4 to once again censure Councilmember Marion Barry (D-Ward 8) for an ethical lapse, this time taking an illegal gift of thousands of dollars from a city contractor.
Ward One’s incumbent councilmember was one of the four who chose to vote against the censure.
Sunday, in a letter to the editor of The Washington Post, our councilmember, along with Councilmember Vincent Orange (D-At Large), attempted to explain their vote.
They claimed that while they fully support the work and findings of the Board of Ethics and Government Accountability (BEGA), and support the Council’s decision to sanction CM Barry, they could not support the decision to strip him of his committee chairmanship — a committee responsible for overseeing our most vulnerable Washingtonians. The Committee on Workforce and Community Affairs regulates welfare, social services, youth affairs and disability services to name a few. It also has oversight of our parks and recreation facilities.
Let’s be clear about a few things.
The incumbent Ward One Councilmember — whom just this weekend Post columnist Colby King called out for being a three-peat ethics offender — has in the past sued the BEGA and is on the record opposing the work it does, yet in Sunday’s letter he voices support for the Board. I suppose as long as you’re not the focus of the Board, the work they do is just fine.
Also, inexplicably, the councilmember argues that he could not vote for censure because voting to remove Mr. Barry’s committee chairmanship would be a conflict of interest for CM David Grosso (I-At Large) and CM Anita Bonds (D-At Large), one of whom would be named committee chair through council seniority. Really?
The Ward One councilmember can try to Monday-morning quarterback his vote with all the canards he wants, but at the end of the day, when do we, the residents of Ward One, say enough is enough? Enough of the waste. Enough of the corruption. Enough of the power games. Enough of the arrogance in the Wilson Building!
Paid for by Weaver 2014, M. Mindy Moretti Treasurer. PO Box 21410 Washington, D.C. 20009. A copy of our report is on file with the Office of Campaign Finance.