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Checking In at the Mayflower Hotel

Looks like D.C. has another infamous hotel. The city appears tickled with its role in the Spitzer scandal: Cameras and secret-service vans have been inexplicably parked outside the entrance to the Mayflower Hotel (the site of the governor's infamous tryst with "Kristen") since the news broke Monday (he's not there now, people). But what's happening inside? For one, there haven't been many requests for the "Spitzer suite," said the petrified concierge, who turned white as a ghost when we asked about "the room." A security guard has been stationed outside room 871, but that hasn't stopped guests from taking a look. "It looks just like any other room," said Mary Hollebeck, in from Michigan for the National Funeral Directors conference. She and her husband, Martin, found out about the scandal after they'd checked in, and said the guests in the hotel have been enjoying the buzz. "Right now I'm sure the hotel probably wants it all just to go away," he said. "But then they'll probably go and raise the rate." So do they find the rooms romantic? "We usually come on business," Mary said, to which Martin interjected, "I want this to be clear: This is my wife." —Janelle Nanos


Dan Rather Rails Against ‘Corporate Overlords’ Colluding With ‘Powers in Washington’

Dan Rather
Part of what Dan Rather was hoping for, in his $70 million lawsuit against former employer CBS, was the ability to open to public scrutiny the company's actions that led up to his ouster in 2005. So it's no surprise that when the network asked Manhattan Supreme Court to keep documents concerning Memogate private, the former anchor got a bit upset. CBS originally said it would keep things public, but they have backed off that. Rather, who wanted the public to see all the information involving the media giant's investigation into the origins of disputed memos about President Bush's National Guard Service, railed against network execs. "It is a fact that corporate overlords working in secret collusion with the powers in Washington are intruding far too often in far too many newsrooms," he said. "Corporate overlords? "Secret collusion"? "Powers"? What is this, a Wachowski movie? Whether or not he is right, Rather isn't doing himself any favors in the battle to rescue his reputation. He, of all people, should know how much phrasing matters. Rather: CBS Bosses Hiding Truth [NYDN via Jossip]


Feds to City: Decongest!

And so it has finally happened: The U.S. Department of Transportation just announced it will give New York City a $354 million grant to implement a congestion-pricing system in the city. It's not quite the $500 million Mayor Bloomberg and Dan Doctoroff told everyone the city stood to receive, but it's a whole lot more than nothing, too. It's a big win for the mayor, except for one thing. The Feds will only pay out on that grant if the state legislature signs off by March of next year — which means that seventeen-member commission formed just after the (alleged) application deadline pass a plan before then, and the city council, too, must agree to it. Shelly Silver, we think, is going to have a whole lot more fun. U.S. Offers New York Millions for Congestion Pricing [City Room/NYT] Earlier: Daily Intel's coverage of congestion pricing