- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 26, 2012

An appearance by D.C. politics legend Marion Barry made for some good radio on WAMU’s popular Politics Hour on Friday.

The Democratic council member sparred with local political analyst and NBC reporter Tom Sherwood on ethics, the upcoming primary elections and his accomplishments as the city’s mayor for 16 years and now as a voice for Ward 8.

But it was his input on the Washington Redskins — the NFC East’s little engine that can’t out in Prince George’s County — that made real waves.

He said an effort spearheaded by council member Jack Evans, Ward 2 Democrat, to bring the Redskins back to the District amounts to “fantasyland.”

There has been growing sentiment among city leaders that the Redskins, who train in Northern Virginia, could be wooed back into the city whose name the team bears. But Mr. Barry isn’t buying it, noting team owner Dan Snyder is making plenty of money at the moment.

Mr. Barry’s comments got some traction in Twitterverse, prompting this comeback from Mr. Evans on Mr. Barry’s lack of optimism for a D.C. stadium or training facility: “Yet he’ll be there for the ribbon cutting.”

What do TV, date night, ultrasound and the ‘Skins have in common?

Virginia Delegate David B. Albo, Fairfax Republican, got a unique apology Friday from Delegate David L. Englin, Alexandria Democrat, a staunch opponent of a bill that would require women to undergo an ultrasound before having an abortion — who he blamed for ruining a tender moment with his wife.

“I thought, ‘Well, the boy’s in bed, wife here, TV,” Mr. Albo said, winking and flashing a thumbs-up. “Got Rita some red wine, sat next to her, used my patented cool move,” as he turned on “mood music” in the House of Delegates chamber. “I invented this and it’s a United States patent. I went, ‘Ohhhh, I’m so tired,’ ” putting his arm around Delegate James M. LeMunyon, Fairfax Republican.

Mr. Albo flipped on the TV and found the Redskins channel because “my wife loves the Redskins more than she loves me” but decided to hunt around.

“All of a sudden on my big screen TV comes this big thing and a picture of a bill that has ‘Albo‘ on it,” he said. “I went ‘Wow, holy smokes, my name as big as a wall.’ And the very next scene was the gentleman from Alexandria’s face as big as my wall going ” ‘trans-v this’ and ‘trans-v that’ and ‘they hate women’ ” and just goes on and on and on. And I’m like this with my wife and the show’s over and she looks at me and she goes, ‘I gotta go to bed.’ “

“So if the gentleman’s plan was to make sure there was one less Republican in this world, he did it,” he added.
Mr. Englin expressed his contrition — with a caveat.

“The best I can do is offer an apology to my good friend from Fairfax for interfering with his marital relations,” he said. “I can only suggest that he be a little more judicious about his use of the remote control in the future.”

McDonnell, O’Malley, at it again

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley renewed their “friendly” rivalry last week when they traded barbs while speaking at a forum in the District.

The governors, heads of their respective Republican and Democratic governors associations, clashed over national politics and exchanged a few shots over each other’s handling of in-state issues during the hour-long Q&A hosted by Politico.

During one exchange, Mr. O’Malley criticized Republicans for what he deemed their extreme political views, alluding to recent GOP debate over federal funding of contraception and the Virginia General Assembly’s flirtation with bills to require ultrasounds before abortions and define life as beginning at conception.

“They say votes for us and things will get better,” he said. “Then you vote for Republicans and they make a hard right turn.”

Mr. McDonnell contended he is more focused on economic issues than social ones and criticized Mr. O’Malley as “the only one who has social issues at the top of his agenda,” referencing the governor’s sponsorship of Maryland’s same-sex marriage bill.

The Virginia governor also poked fun at Mr. O’Malley’s political aspirations and took the Maryland governor to task for his frequent mentioning of former President George W. Bush’s tax cuts as a reason for the nation’s current economic ills.

“I’m just wondering when Governor O’Malley runs for president in 2016, is he still going to be blaming President Bush for everything that’s wrong with the country?” Mr. McDonnell asked.

Reporters David Hill, Tom Howell and David Sherfinski contributed to this report.