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D.C. Delegation Throwdown: Fenty Seeks Alternative Convention Hotel

We told you in the pages of the Post this week about the infighting among the D.C. Democratic Party; now it seems the rivalries are going all the way to the top. Two sources tell D.C. Wire that Mayor Adrian M. Fenty is seeking an alternative hotel to the D.C. delegation's homebase at the Denver Crowne Plaza at the Democratic National Convention next week.

While D.C. Party Chairman Anita Bonds had been trying to dole out rooms for the 25 local delegates (there are also another 15 at-large superdelegates, some of whom will be staying elsewhere), Fenty has been looking at other accomodations. This comes even though Bonds has reserved him a suite at the Crowne Plaza as the head of the D.C. delegation.

Asked why Fenty wants to keep his distance, one source said the mayor will be busy hob-nobbing at the convention while also needing time to "run the city" by cell phone; therefore, that source continued, the mayor needs a place to escape lest he get bogged down with gladhanding.

Another source, however, put it in a more political light: He noted that Bonds did not support Fenty's mayoral bid, and that it took a lot of arm-twisting from Fenty to convince Bonds to support Barack Obama's presidential bid. (Bonds has said she made up her own mind to support Obama and that she needed no push from Fenty on the night she made her endorsement public.)

In any case, the situation calls to mind 2000 when then-Mayor Anthony A. Williams and wife Diane chose to stay in a downtown Los Angeles hotel at the convention, while the rest of the D.C. delegation was stuck in an airport hotel. Williams got a lot of grief from the locals about that choice, which played to his aloof reputation.

In an interview this week with D.C. Wire, Williams called that decision a "major faux pas."

"Why don't we just piss off the entire delegation?" Williams said, mocking his own thinking at the time. "In retrospect it was completely stupid."

By David A Nakamura  |  August 20, 2008; 4:12 PM ET
Categories:  2008 Presidential Race  
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Bonds now says that she made up her own mind? Really? May 13th is when it was announced on demconwatch

They quote her:

The announcement was impromptu and prompted, she said, by Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) who put her on the spot at a meeting of Democratic delegates in the John A. Wilson Building last night and asked if she was supporting Obama.

"I said, 'Okay,'" Bonds said in her first interview about the subject. In fact, you guys broke the news:

The Wire goes on to say:
Bonds, who has attended events for both Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Obama during the campaign, said, "You try to exercise your best judgment....We want to go to the convention as unified as we can."

"I am with the mayor. I'm with the chairman," she said, referring to Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D). Both Gray and Fenty are Obama supporters.

But May 13th? Wich is after Council member Thomas changed to Obama from Clinton and also after Obama had mathmatically won the race early on May 7th (according to the late Tim Russert).

Sure doesn't look like she's supporting the nominee, if she were, there might be Obama related events listed in the calendar or more information on how DC Democrats can get involved in local Obama events, especially DC Democrats not going to the convention.

And if Fenty gets another room, does this mean his room is free now?

Posted by: Runamuk | August 20, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Anita Bonds always said she would not publicly endorse until after the entire DC Delegate selection/election process was completed. Which was May 12.
Sen. Obama did not gain enough Delegates until June 4th.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 21, 2008 2:56 AM | Report abuse

Anonymous poster said:

Anita Bonds always said she would not publicly endorse until after the entire DC Delegate election/ election process was completed. Which was May 12. Sen. Obama did not gain enough Delegates until June 4th.

Where did she say that? When was that said? What public meeting?

After the Senator won more than 70% of the DC Vote, why even bother to wait? Except of course, that she wanted to endorse Senator Clinton, but she couldn't, not after May 7th when there was no way for her to ever gain enough delegates to over take the popular vote winner. And Ms Bonds wouldn't have done it if she hadn't been pressured publicly by the mayor, which is what has been reported without a retraction by Ms. Bonds until now. It looks a little fishy.

If she were really out there for Obama now, she'd be doing something with DC for Obama, or posting information on the DC Democratic events page or there would be something on their blog. There is no information about Obama campaign events associated with her. Why?

She may have endorsed him, but she certainly is not campaigning for him. and it doesn't look as if her anonymous poster supporter has any intention of campaigning for the Senator, either.

Posted by: Runamuk | August 21, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

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