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Nickles: The Mediator

At his confirmation hearing today, acting Attorney General Peter J. Nickles described himself as a mediator who can bring people together. He brought up Council member Kwame R. Brown (D-At Large) and his relationship with deputy mayor Neil O. Albert and with Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D).

On the Fenty front, Nickles said much can be resolved with a chat at Ben's Chili Bowl. He recalled being at the home of half-smokes, which reminds him of a restaurant from his childhood, and running into Marshall Brown, Kwame's father.

"The gentleman said, 'Mr. Nickles, I'm Kwame Brown's dad. Why can't Kwame and the mayor get along better?'" Nickles testified.

Marshall Brown, informed of the mention, said, "Isn't that interesting?"

"I may have met him," he said. "But I don't remember that conversation."

Kwame Brown had no comment on he and Fenty. "I'm going to leave that one alone," he said, adding that being a mediator for the mayor "sounds like a job of the general counsel." (That's a reference to council criticism that Nickles acts more like a general counsel than an attorney general.)

However, he had plenty to say about him and Albert. Brown is chairman of the Committee on Economic Development while Albert's deputy mayor position puts him in charge of economic development and planning for the administration. Brown has complained that he can't get information out of Albert.

"Peter has to sit in on the meetings or Neil and I can't meet," Brown said. "Maybe he has made Neil understand it's illegal to withhold information."

By Nikita R Stewart  |  October 17, 2008; 4:59 PM ET
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