Money, Money, Money
New campaign finance reports are in (with some exceptions, LL is looking at you former mayor-for-life Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry) and there's plenty to digest.
First off, Ward 5 council hopefuls Delano Hunter and Kenyan McDuffie both had pretty sizable hauls considering the race has barely begun there. Hunter pulled in more than $20,000 and McDuffie's take was nearly $17,000. Their early success at fundraising highlights the advantages that come with having run unsuccessful campaigns against then-incumbent, disgraced former Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr., in 2010. They didn't win, but they got their names out there and built networks that come in handy now. (LL's forthcoming column is covering similar ground in the current race in Ward 8.) As for the other reports worth noting, Frank Wilds, who came in second to Thomas in 2006, and appears to have loaned himself $10,000 and ANC Commissioner John Salatti raised nearly $8,000.
Next up is the Democratic at-large race. Incumbent Councilmember Vincent Orange leads all comers with a total $140,000 raised so far. (LL is still not seeing any donations related to usual Orange money man Jeffrey Thompson.) Former Prince George's County Councilmember Peter Shapiro (yep, you read that right) is outpacing former Councilmember Sekou Biddle in the money race, prompting Greater Greater Washington contributor Dave Stroup to call for Biddle to drop out and support Shapiro. Shapiro's total take is nearly $90,000 (though he loaned himself $50,000 of that) while Biddle has raised $47,000.* Of course, if Stroup's man Bryan Weaver had followed that advice in last year's special election and dropped out to support a candidate with more cash, it's possible Orange might not even be the incumbent!
In Ward 4, LL is just about ready to declare incumbent Councilmember Muriel Bowser the victor based solely on her massive money edge. Bowser has more than $212,000 available to spend in the next two months. Her opponents, including Renee Bowser, Baruti Jahi, and Max Skolnik, aren't even in the ballpark.
In Ward 7, Councilmember Yvette Alexander has started to show some life (if she can stay on the ballot), raising nearly $50,000 this reporting period. Meanwhile, her parking-lobby backed opponent Tom Brown managed a paltry $3,855. Kevin Chavous the Younger raised $6,500, leaving him with $11,000 to spend on his campaign and/or other activities. (Kidding!)
In Ward 8 we're still waiting to see what Barry has raised. LL highlights what little money his opponents will have to take on Barry in a column that's about to post.
One last note, Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans has already spent $227,000 in an uncontested race. And he's still got another $87,000 left to plow through.
* This post has been updated.