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Barry (Obama) from D.C. asks the governor on WTOP

Rosalind Helderman

Gov. Tim Kaine (D) fielded calls for the last time on WTOP's "Ask the Governor" program this morning, including one with a familiar voice identified by host Mark Seagrave as "Barry from D.C."

That would be President Barack Obama, calling in to congratulate his pick for chairman of the Democratic National Committee as he concludes his four years as governor of Virginia. Another call came from Gov.-elect Bob McDonnell, during something of a greatest hits for Kaine during the hour-long program.

Obama started his call by telling Kaine that he had some questions about traffic in Northern Virginia. Both men laughed, and then Obama went on to say, "Rather than go there, I just want to say how proud we are of your service as governor as the Commonwealth of Virginia and wish you and the family all the best this Christmas season, after a just terrific round of service for the people of Virginia."

"Well, Mr. President, that means a lot," Kaine told Obama. "As I think back about my four years as governor, I still think my happiest day as governor was in November of 2008 and the great work we did together across the nation and in Virginia was spectacular and I'm excited to continue to be in service, as they say."

Before hanging up, Obama joked with Kaine that the two men have to stick together. "We continue to think that your wife is probably a little superior to you, as I think people feel about the First Lady," Obama said. "You and me have to stick together, since we're married to better people."

Identified as "Bob from Virginia," McDonnell also congratulated Kaine on his service and thanked him for working to make the transition as seamless as possible. The two laughed about a call McDonnell placed to Kaine last year to help secure tickets to Obama's January inauguration and also about whether Kaine has managed to scrounge up more money in the state budget.

Among the other callers, Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, former Virginia governor and Kaine father-in-law Linwood Holton, musician Bruce Hornsby, Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille and U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly.

And Kaine fielded some serious calls as well. On the topic of his budget proposal, which included $2.3 billion in budgets cuts as well as the elimination of the car tax, to be replaced by a 1 percent increase in the income tax rate, Kaine had strong words for lawmakers who have rejected the plan out of hand, asserting that if Virginia wants to continue to receive the accolades it has gathered in recent years, the legislature must pass his budget.

"I can guarantee you, if you pass this budget, we will stay best managed, we will stay AAA, we will stay the best state for business in the United States," Kaine said. "Now, if they're not willing to make hard decisions, and they want to try gimmicks or other things, that's up to them, I can't control what happens after I leave. ... They're going to gripe and complain because it's a tough time, but hey, they've got to make tough decisions."

By Rosalind Helderman  |  December 22, 2009; 11:15 AM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , Gerald E. Connolly , Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman , Timothy M. Kaine  
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Next: Legislation to Watch: A message to the feds


Barry from DC can give the Commonwealth of Virginia about $20 billion next year to fix some of those traffic problems we have....

Posted by: notjoeabbey | December 22, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

obozo continues his pandering to any fool that will listen to him. what a dork

Posted by: pofinpa | December 22, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

President "Accorn".

Posted by: RealTexan1 | December 22, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Shouldn't that be "Barry from Kenya?"

Posted by: clandestinetomcat | December 22, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

pofinpa, "realtexan1", clandestinetomcat - really, this is what you have to contribute?

Bozo was our last president - unable to use actual words for instance.

"Accorn" - I won't bother to mention the 2000 election, or should I? (i.e fox)

Kenya - really, do a quick serach and see his birth cert. online.

Wow, this country is in trouble for sure....

Posted by: Michael_A1 | December 22, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Good to see McConnell and Kaine can act civil towards one another, despite being from different parties. Perhaps some posters on here ought to take note.

Posted by: dpk12000 | December 22, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Sick people out here...really, really, sick, LOL...and jealous toboot, LOL...

Posted by: Beingsensible | December 22, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

"pofinpa" wrote

"obozo continues his pandering to any fool that will listen to him. what a dork"

Ironic that someone could try to pass that off as an intelligent comment and then call someone else a dork. Maybe the guy tossing the n-word around should try to top it by calling Obama a racist.

The bulk of the commenters thus far appear to be illiterates envious of an educated black man. Do y'all really think you can pick yourselves up by trying to drag someone else down? If you do, you've been scammed, and not by Obama.

Posted by: chaos1 | December 22, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Comments from most of the above posters help me realize more and more why America continues it's fall from grace. Because the people still refuse to work together.


Posted by: Just_An_Observer | December 22, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Blah, blah, blather...last of the liberal love fest here in Virginia. Happy days are here again.

Posted by: BlueMax1 | December 22, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Just_an_Observer, you are absolutely correct. I thought this ignorance would be over by now. I experienced enough of it first-hand in the 1940s, '50s, 60's.

Obama is to be admired. A highly intelligent and educated devoted family man. He definitely is a role model for ALL.

Posted by: Rich393 | December 22, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

clandestinetomcat wrote>>>Shouldn't that be "Barry from Kenya?"

Birthers still at it! LOL

Posted by: angie12106 | December 22, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

I don't find anything about sick people worth laughing about.

Posted by: mattintx | December 22, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

wow the WAPO is turning into a print copy of the KKK newsletter why don't you racists take Christmas off?

Posted by: mikey30919 | December 22, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

How can a blatantly racist post stay up for over three hours? Man, WaPo has no standards anymore.

Posted by: gbooksdc | December 22, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Barry From D.c. does not intimidate the great Iranian People. We spit in his face,
sanctions? Ha. Talks. Ha.
Young Barry from D.C. should go and tell his jew friend axelrod to leave Iran Be!

Posted by: simonsays1 | December 22, 2009 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Does one have to be a moron to post here?

Posted by: ajlerner1 | December 22, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

gbooksdc -- The comment has been deleted and the commenter banned. Apologies for the turnaround time, we don't screen the comments as they come in, so we rely on readers to bring problems like these to our attention. If you reported the comment and nothing happened, please do let me know so I can check on it.

Christopher Dean Hopkins
Deputy Editor, Local Politics and Government

Posted by: Christopher Dean Hopkins | December 22, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse


Thanks for the turn around and the comment. I saw the comment, but couldn't get to it at the time. It's good to hear from the other side of the screen.

Incidentally, I've seen someone going by that handle post such comments in the past. Probably gets banned each time. I suspect he/she does variations on spelling, but it's always some variation on dumb n--


Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | December 22, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade -- Yeah, unfortunately we (and pretty much all free public Web sites) are limited in our ability to block repeat offenders, particularly those with plenty of effort and time to spare.

Posted by: Christopher Dean Hopkins | December 23, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

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