It might seem odd to think about the November DC Council election this early. But some candidates for the two at-large seats up for grabs started the process months ago, and many of their names won’t even be on even the Democratic ballot in the June 2nd primary election. That’s because they are running as independents.
Ward 3 voters will choose two at-large candidates for DC Council on Election Day. (Ward 3 Council member Mary Cheh is not up for re-election until 2022.) One of the seats is currently held by Council member Robert White. He is seeking re-election. The other seat is held by David Grosso, who is not running again.
Under the DC Home Rule Charter, only one Democratic candidate can win one of the two seats. The other must go to another party or an independent. So those running as party candidates, such as Democrat, Republican, DC Statehood Green and Libertarian, must run in their party’s primaries held June 2nd.
Those who are running as independents will appear on the November ballot only. And they are getting into the race early, reaching out all over the city to make contacts and raise money.
The list of candidates is a fluid one. It has changed quite a bit since we started compiling the list. We will revisit and update the list as we get new information (or any information, in some cases), so please contact us with corrections and additions at firstname.lastname@example.org). As of March 2, 2020:
The DC Board of Elections says the following candidates have picked up nominating petitions: Nathan Brown, Tyrone Carmichael, A’Shia Howard and incumbent At-Large Council member Robert White. Tori Fernandez Whitney and Keith Silver have withdrawn.
Marya Pickering – GOP Activist
DC Statehood Green
Markus Batchelor – DC State Board of Education VP & Nonprofit Group Executive
Mario Cristaldo – Senior Center Executive Director & Community Activist
Franklin Garcia – DC Shadow Representative & Statehood Activist
Marcus Goodwin – Real Estate Developer, Democratic Activist & 2018 At-Large Council Candidate
Christina Henderson – Former DC Council and Congressional Aide
Chander Jayaraman – ANC Commissioner & Emergency Management Consultant
Jeanné Lewis – Nonprofit Group Executive
Will Merrifield – Tenants Rights Attorney
Mónica Palacio – Former Director of DC’s Office of Human Rights
Eric Rogers – Political Consultant & Democratic Activist
All candidates can take part in the Fair Elections Program, which stipulates that donations must be from individuals and must not exceed $100. To qualify for a 1:5 match of public money, at large-candidates must collect $12,000 from at least 250 individual donors.
Keith C. Ivey, who is tracking the Fair Elections at dcgeekery.com, says six of the candidates were either seeking to qualify or had qualified for the matching funds as of January 31st.
There will be opportunities in the coming months to talk to some of these candidates. You might keep in mind issues Forest Hills Connection has covered:
- How to make Connecticut Avenue, Broad Branch Road and other local streets safer for all users
- Revitalizing the Van Ness commercial corridor and the important role of UDC
- Stormwater management and improving stream and river water quality
- The homeless and efforts to rehouse them
- Expanding housing stock and city services (such as schools and transit) for new residents
And if the candidate is savvy, he or she will ask for your opinion, as well.
Updated March 3 to add the DC Statehood Green and Libertarian candidates