‘There’s there there’

November 21, 2013

Machen said, among other things, that some people criticizing the slow pace of his investigation are not cooperating with it. (Aaron C. Davis/The Washington Post)

U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. came down to the Hill Center Wednesday evening for a lengthy public chat with WRC-TV reporter Tom Sherwood. After fielding questions about his upbringing, delivering milquetoast opinion on the Redskins name and lamenting his office’s sequester-starved staffing, things got down to brass tacks. Machen said his investigation into Mayor Vincent C. Gray and businessman Jeffrey E. Thompson — not that he mentioned their names — would be moving more quickly were there not so many “challenges and obstacles” in the way — among them, a quarrel over the production of documents with Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan. But Machen assured those listening this is no wild goose chase: “It’s not like we’ve been looking at this for three years and there’s no there there. I mean, there’s there there, and we’re trying to gather information.”

In other news:

Citing Navy Yard attack, city officials ponder encrypting some fire radio communications (PostLoose LipsWAMU-FMAP)

City wants contractor to repay Options PCS post haste (Post)

Meet Valerie Parlave, D.C.’s top FBI agent (WUSA-TV)

Feds bust extensive Texas-to-D.C. drug ring (Post)

Cutting academic programs at UDC is not the most fun thing in the world (Post)

“[C]an a four-year university consider itself a real institution of learning without a history or economics department?” (Answer Sheet)

Jim Graham says he’ll decide on re-election run “shortly” (Loose Lips)

Marc Morgan makes his second council run as a Republican, this time for an at-large seat (Blade)

Gray touts affordable housing record (DofDHousing ComplexWUSA-TVDCist)

Yes, there have been glitches with the D.C. health insurance exchange (WBJ)

Mother of woman stabbed to death outside Georgia Avenue club: “I want to see justice” (Post)

Florida congressman pleads guilty to cocaine possession charge (PostHuffPo)

New York congresswoman is mugged on Capitol Hill (PostAP)

D.C. sees rise in unclaimed bodies (WRC-TV)

D.C. health exchange chief gets raked over the coals by Sen. David Vitter (ExaminerTimes-Picayune)

Advocacy groups call on D.C. insurance commissioner to pass on Obamacare exemption (DCFPI)

More restaurants for east Dupont under liquor license moratorium modifications (City DeskDCist)

Premature YouTube postings hint at traffic camera awareness campaign to come (WRC-TV)

Van Ness construction will close Connecticut Avenue sidewalk for two years (GGW)

LGBT community center opens Saturday in Reeves Center (Blade)

More on new DCPS report cards (GGW)

What the old NGA headquarters looks like after 200 cans of paint dumped on it (Washingtonian)

City employees: They’re just like us! (WJLA-TV)

Mike DeBonis covers local politics and government for The Washington Post. He also writes a blog and a political analysis column that runs on Fridays.
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Mike DeBonis | November 20, 2013