The Slatest

What We Can Learn From This Congresswoman’s Total Failure to Park Her Car

Eleanor Holmes Norton has been the District of Columbia’s tireless advocate since she became its nonvoting member in Congress 24 years ago. She fights back with fiery floor speeches and interviews when her colleagues overide D.C. laws they disagree with. She’s repeatedly proposed measures to finally grant D.C. full statehood or at least to allow her vote to count in the House. She’s met with failure every time.

Maybe, as she begins her 13th term in a body with a chronic lack of interest that borders on contempt for her and her constituents, Norton simply does not care anymore. Evidence to that effect, at least, has emerged via tipsters who sent the Roll Call gossip blog a video (above) shot from an office overlooking a row of angled cars on Capitol Hill. It shows Norton attempting to park her car while an aide tries lamely to guide her. The result is a car that is not parked as much as abandoned.

Norton and her aide walk away without leaving notes on the probably-damaged neighboring vehicles, though when contacted later by Roll Call, Norton’s staff claimed they’d gone out to look themselves and not seen any dents, but had left a card just to be sure. 

“If she parks like that, she should not be a member of Congress any more,” says the anonymous office-dweller shooting the video. But maybe it was exactly her experience battling unfailing obstinacy in the House that led her to this. If you had to spend decades showing up to work only to be mockingly overruled in every possible instance, maybe you’d take out your frustration by casually rubbing your Ford C-Max back and forth against a fellow citizen’s red truck.