The Washington Times - November 8, 2011, 07:00AM

Barry’s mayoral hires now at peak seniority; Virginia Democrats make final push for today’s elections; Chief Lanier to get tough on ‘confrontational’ protesters; Ex-Justice Stevens says recent Maryland redistricting is ‘outrageously unconstitutional’; Unqualified support for Gray pick to run 911 call center; Judge: Huguely attorneys can see Love’s entire autopsy-medical history; George Washington University professor cut class but gave ‘A’ grades; O’Malley joins national effort for same-sex marriage.

Not long after Marion Barry became the District’s mayor in 1979, he presided over a hiring spree that swelled the D.C. government dramatically. Mr. Barry created positions that even today some doubted were necessary. Three decades later, thousands of those people are still there — now at the peak of seniority, according to The Washington Times.


Top Virginia Democrats rallied Monday before an enthusiastic crowd at George Mason University in a final push before Tuesday’s elections, where the party will try to prevent a Republican monopoly from controlling Richmond just three years after the state swung blue. “The last thing we need to do is turn Richmond and make it more like Washington,” said Sen. Mark R. Warner, calling the state Senate a “bulwark” that has counted good Democrats and good Republicans among its members, The Times reports.

Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said Monday that her department is adjusting its tactics in response to Occupy D.C.’s “increasingly confrontational and violent” demonstrations, following the actions of other U.S. cities looking to evict or at least crack down on what officials are characterizing as unruly protesters. The chief’s tough talk changed the tone of what had been about a month of congenial relations between protesters and authorities. It came after a Friday night incident in which several people attending a downtown event, where the protesters were demonstrating, were hurt, The Times reports.

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens is calling Maryland’s recent congressional redistricting “outrageously unconstitutional,” and says that his inability to persuade the other justices to overturn such partisan gerrymandering was “one of my major disappointments in my entire career.”

Mr. Stevens, 91, retired last year after almost 35 years on the court. He was interviewed for SCOTUSBlog by a former court clerk about the justice’s new book “Five Chiefs.” The interview was published Thursday, and ProPublica reported on his gerrymandering comments Monday. Mr. Stevens was appointed by Republican President Gerald Ford but was considered part of the court’s liberal wing, according to the Maryland Reporter.

Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s pick to lead the agency that handles 911 emergency calls and 311 service requests says she will improve morale “from the bottom up” and work to make sure emergency calls from Northwest do not end up at dispatch centers in Maryland. Jennifer A.J. Greene, a former commander in the Metropolitan Police Department’s 5th District who will be paid $179,000 per year, received support from former and current colleagues at her confirmation hearing before the D.C. Council’s Committee on the Judiciary, The Times reports.

Attorneys for a University of Virginia lacrosse player charged with killing a female lacrosse star will be allowed to examine her medical records, a judge ruled Monday. Charlottesville Circuit Court Judge Edward Hogshire ruled that attorneys for George Huguely, 24, of Chevy Chase, Md., could review the medical records of Yeardley Love, who was found dead in her apartment near campus on May 3, 2010. The state medical examiner’s office said Ms. Love, 22, died from blunt force trauma to the head. Mr. Huguely, who had dated Ms. Love, told police he kicked in Ms. Love’s bedroom door, shook her and her head hit a wall several times. His attorneys contend she died from an irregular heartbeat caused partially from taking prescription Adderall and drinking alcohol, according to WVIR-TV.

A George Washington University medical school professor has resigned after students complained that she never taught a required class and assigned all her students an “A” grade. Venetia Orcutt resigned last month as an assistant professor in the school’s department of physician assistant studies. At least three students wrote letters to GW’s provost this fall complaining that Ms. Orcutt did not teach two out of three semesters of a course on evidence-based medicine during the 2009-2010 school year. In the letters, obtained by the Associated Press, the students claim they were never told why the classes weren’t taught and that they were all given an “A.”

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, Democrat, is part of a bipartisan effort launched Monday to deepen support nationally for same-sex marriage among moderate and independent voters.

“Americans of all walks of life want their children to live in a loving, stable, committed home — protected under the law,” Mr. O’Malley said. His involvement in the “Commitment Campaign” comes as he prepares to push a gay-marriage bill in Maryland General Assembly session that starts in January. The stated aim of the campaign, spearheaded by the think tank Third Way, is to promote the idea that same-sex couples want to marry “so that they can make a lifetime commitment, not simply for rights and benefits,” according to the Washington Post.