City Desk

Who Will Run for D.C. Council Chairman?

If Vince Gray runs for mayor as reports indicate, he forfeits an almost certain re-election as council chairman. So who runs?

Jack Evans: Back in September, the Ward 2 councilmember told LL he'd "be interested" in running for chair if Gray ran for mayor. But Evans, in his past, has pledged mayoral runs only to think the better of it. But Evans wouldn't have to give up his seat, and he can raise cash like no one's business.

Kwame Brown: Brown has kept absolutely mum about a chairman's run. Like Evans, he doesn't have to risk his seat to run and is a prodigious fundraiser. Plus, he's only two years removed from an impressive citywide landslide victory. LL has gotten indications today that Brown is gathering support for a run.

Phil Mendelson: Mendelson's already hit the ground running for his at-large re-election campaign. Question is: Would he take the risk of running for the chairmanship? Not known for bringing in huge amounts of cash, but has an impeccable record of fending off better-financed challengers.

Kathy Patterson: The former Ward 3 councilmember lost to Gray by a decent margin in 2006, but she retains widespread respect in the city and might see a path to victory depending on who decides to run.

Vincent Orange: The former Ward 5 councilmember risked his seat to run for mayor in 2006 and lost, but he may see a path back to electoral office in the now-vacated chairmanship. But would Orange have to give up his lucrative Pepco lobbying job to run?

David Catania: The at-large independent has an impressive record to run on and a formidable fundraising machine. But his chief of staff, Ben Young, tells LL that his boss has no plans "at this time" to seek the chair.

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  • KCinDC

    Catania? Are you suggesting he'd become a Democrat or that he'd somehow be able to win as an independent in November? Why not add in Michael Brown while you're at it? Admittedly, Catania did beat Democrat Arrington Dixon to get his seat initially, but that was a special election with two Democrats running.

  • Ward 5 Democrat

    Run Kathy run!

  • Rick Mangus

    Like I said today about Vincent Gray running for mayor and the same goes for the council mambers, you can't shine shit!

  • Stone

    Kathy P for Chair is the best choice of the litter....

  • Quantaviana

    Kathy P? That stupid bitch couldn't campaign her way out of a wet paper full of holes.

  • proballdc

    Kathy Patterson would be a great chair. She was a very professional council member who was always prepared to tackle tough city issues. I'd vote for her. I could care less about how she runs a dog and pony campaign that so many "born and raised" residents latch onto. Show me the track record.


    As much as I support DC politics and Chairman Gray
    I think he has far too much at risk in running for Mayor. If he loses he is out of the game. I would so much rather have him as Chair. Worse case we could end up with Fenty back in office and Evans as Chair of the Council. The city would be on the fast track to hell.

  • Tom

    I agree 100% with VOTESINVA, I would like Evans as chair but only if Fenty is not Mayor. However, if Vince campaigns hard and smart he can win this.

  • Sigmund Freud

    How could douche bag Evans be Council Chair and still keep his $240K law firm job --don't the citizens deserve a full-time Chair. We're ripped off enough by his parttime Ward 2 representation and his Cigar Smoking exemption for his buddies on ST. Pat's Day.

  • http://deleted candycane1

    VotesinVa: You are 100% correct! For that reason alone, I prefer that Gray remain as Chair. However, if he runs, he'll get my vote to get rid of Fenty. As chair, OMG the pickings are worse than ever. Evans would be a complete disaster and I don't want to see any of the past CMs return. My question is Why does Evans want to consider it? By law, he would have to give up Patton&Boggs. What's the real story? Are they dissatisfied with Evans or will they make out like bank with him as chair?

  • http://deleted candycane1

    Mike: Yesterday, there was a run down on what wards would carry Fenty and/or Gray. I caught the tale end of that on Channel 8 news. Can you give a synopsis on what that was again?

  • Truth Hurts

    Kathy Patterson would be head and shoulders above any of those mentioned. Too bad there's no chance she'll run. Kwame is Gray's choice and Patterson's not going to waste time fighting their subliminally racist "one city" and "we the people" slogans. She's too decent to call them out.