We don’t expect Wolf Blitzer and Star Wars holograms of Will-i-am to be on the big screen for this election “watch night” at Busboys and Poets. But then it’s April Fools Day. And it’s the DC local primary elections. There are three areas that I’ll be watching re the outcome of the mayoral primaries for the Democratic nominee.
1. The Washington Post newspaper as “decider”. The Post has endorsed Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser (what they have decided as the top “anti-Gray/anti-corruption” choice). Over the past few weeks they’ve framed this election starting with 7-8 candidates; to four and now two: Bowser and sitting Mayor Vincent Gray. Keep in mind, the newspaper endorsed then Mayor Adrian Fenty in 2010 (Bowser’s political mentor).
Today’s Express (a free newspaper published by the Washington Post distributed in boxes and handed to Metro riders during rush hour) has a 3/4 page campaign ad for Bowser on the front cover page under the mass head; full ad on the inside front page. Because there’s newspaper content on the same sheet (back page), it gives the first impression that Bower’s “Vote Today” message was part of newspaper content. Bowser is running on her record for pushing the city council’s ethics bill. BTW there are other mayoral candidates in the running: Council members Jack Evans and Vincent Orange, business owner Andy Shallal (disclosure, tonight’s blogging will be from the Shallal camp), former Ward 6 Council member Tommy Wells, and former Clinton appointee Rita Jo Lewis, and business man/musician Carlos Allen.
Also keep in mind, DC voters don’t like when Feds determine who they should vote for. Keep the word “backlash” in your back pocket.
2. Do 1,100 new residents a month mean anything for DC local politics? The Washington Post has already cancelled their impact on DC elections. But could they be the April Fools surprise or a new silent majority? Add race to this topic. That’s DC politics.
3. How politically progressive is DC? Andy Shallal and Tommy Wells have both courted the progressive vote. But how big is that vote? How strong? How progressive? Were they able to convince “Independents” to register as “Democrats” in time to cast their votes today? Over the years the city council has supported some “progressive” policies including marriage equality. But other battles continue to rage in public education, housing, employment, poverty, business — just to name a few.
And let’s not forget. Probably for the first time, the outcome of today’s Democratic primary is not a done deal for the Mayor’s office. Councilmember-at-Large and Independent candidate David Cantania is just waiting to make his next move on the challenger.
This is not a paid ad, but there are some cool DC Flag Products on Route One Apparel which is where I got the image for the sunglasses. So in all fairness, here’s their link.