WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Jim Graham Fights Back Against Reprimand From D.C. Council

Play associated audio
Councilman Graham denies any wrongdoing in the 2008 incident.
Jared Angle
Councilman Graham denies any wrongdoing in the 2008 incident.

D.C. Council Member Jim Graham is facing a possible reprimand by his colleagues on the council after the city's board of ethics issued a blistering a report last week stating Graham that violated the city's code of conduct during a 2008 contracting deal.

The controversy for Graham started after a lengthy Metro report detailed that while serving on the Metro Board, the Ward 1 council member suggested at a 2008 meeting that he would support a developer's bid for a D.C. Council lottery contract if the developer's firm withdrew its bid for a Metro land project.

The Metro report led to an investigation by the newly formed Ethics Board, which, in its first ruling, scolded Graham and found he violated the city's code of conduct, but ultimately said it couldn't sanction the council member because penalties were not in place when the actions involving the land deal occurred.

That led to yesterday's announcement by Council Chairman Phil Mendelson that he would hold a special meeting next week to vote on two resolutions punishing Graham — one a formal reprimand and the other stripping Graham of his oversight over the city's alcohol board.

And as Mendelson made the announcement in the hallway outside his office, Graham was there, standing next to reporters, and then finally holding his own press conference, where he explained that his 2008 actions may have been political horse-trading or sharp-elbowed politics, but were not illegal or unethical.

"Suggesting one thing for another thing is the stock and trade of a lot of legislative actions," Graham said. "There's no crime committed, no law broken, no financial interest."

The vote for the two resolutions against Graham is scheduled for Monday, but Graham is suing the board of ethics and is seeking a temporary restraining order against the board's opinion and is pushing back against Mendelson's move to hold a vote Monday, claiming he should have a chance to defend himself.

NPR

Bill Cosby Admitted To Acquiring Drugs To Give To A Woman For Sex

NPR's Kelly McEvers interviews MaryClaire Dale, an Associated Press reporter, about the court documents showing Cosby said in 2005 he got quaaludes to give to a woman with whom he wanted to have sex.
NPR

Mechanization Brings Quick Change To Borneo Region Known For 'Slow Rice'

A company is introducing mechanized rice farming to the interior of Malaysian Borneo for the first time. Scientists say the change may damage the bonds between the local people and their environment.
WAMU 88.5

New Challenges To Recycling In The United States

Falling commodity prices are putting a squeeze on American recycling companies. What this means for cities, counties and the future of recycling programs in the United States.

WAMU 88.5

UMBC President Freeman Hrabowski

Kojo chats with Freeman Hrabowski, the president of University of Maryland, Baltimore County, about the future of higher education - and what he's doing to steer African-American students into science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.