Following are the top politics and government stories each month on Borderstan in 2011. The top story each month was the one that was read by the most readers. The writer’s name is next to each story.
Top story for the year in terms of reader views? The run-away winner was Michelle Lancaster’s March Q&A with Patrick Mara.
- January: Toutorsky Mansion Owners Apply for Chancery Use (Tom Hay)
- February: February 16 Memorial Service for Jeff Coudriet (Matty Rhoades)
- March: Patrick Mara: The Republican Who Did (Can He Win Again?) (Michelle Lancaster)
- April: Meet Josh Lopez: What Makes Him Run? (Michelle Lancaster)
- May: Shaw to Ward 6? Committee Votes on Ward Map Next Week (Tom Hay)
- June: Guest Column: Redistricting Process Offers Chance to Reunite 14th & U in Ward 1 (Brianne Nadeau)
- July: Bikes and Sidewalks: Time to Update D.C.’s Laws? (Mary Burgan)
- August: Spencer Resigns ANC 1B02 Seat; 2 Seats Remain Vacant in 2F/Logan (Matty Rhoades)
- September: ANC 2B Unanimously Supports 17th and O Apartment Project (Tom Hay)
- October: 18th Street Beautification Causing Problems in Adams Morgan (Michelle Lancaster)
- November: DCCA to Protest Congolese Embassy Over 16th Street Renovations (Matty Rhoades)
- December: Postal Service “Committed” to New Location for 14th Street Branch (Matty Rhoades)
From Matty Rhoades
Yesterday was the big day, folks. April 26 was Special Election Day in D.C. to elect an At-Large Councilmember. Did you get out and vote? If you didn’t you were most assuredly not alone. Turnout was only about 12%.
The winner is former Ward 5 Councilmember Vincent Orange, who snagged 12,216 votes (28%). In second place was the lone Republican in the race, Patrick Mara with 11,096 votes (26%). Interim Councilmember Sekou Biddle pulled 8,842 votes (20%), Bryan Weaver got 5,665 votes (13%) and Josh Lopez had 3,079 votes (7%). Four other candidates pulled around 2,200 votes.
Orange will have to face the voters again in the 2012 primary; yesterday’s election was simply to fill the remainder of a four-year term. In other words, another campaign season is just months away. The primary for D.C.’s local offices is traditionally in September.
Both Mara and Weaver live in Ward 1, which includes the U Street area. Mara was elected to the D.C. Board of Education last November from Ward 1; Weaver ran against incumbent Councilmember Jim Graham in the Democratic Primary in Ward 1 last year.
By Precinct and Ward
In the 13 precincts in the Borderstan area, Mara won eight of them — Precincts 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 21 and 129. Weaver won the other five — 22, 23, 24, 137 and 141. Moreover, Mara finished second in the five precincts won by Weaver while Weaver finished second in four of the precincts won by Mara.
Citywide, Orange carried Wards 4, 5, 7 and 8. Mara won Wards 2, 3 and 6 while Weaver won Ward 1.
In Ward 2, which contains the Dupont Circle and Logan Circle neighborhoods, Mara got 46%. He was followed by Weaver with 18%, Biddle with 17%, Orange with 10% and Lopez with 6%.
In Ward 1, which contains the U Street area, Weaver got 35%. He was followed by Mara with 23%, Biddle with 17%, Orange with 13% and Lopez with 8%.
Editor’s note: Joshua Lopez has held a number of positions within D.C. city government, including constituent services specialist, legislative research analyst, Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner, and was a ward-level campaign director for former Mayor, Adrian Fenty. Lopez also spearheaded the write-in campaign to re-elect Fenty last November after Fenty lost the September primary to Vincent Gray.
Lopez is now running for an At-Large Council seat in the April 26 special election. The seat opened up when Kwame Brown was elected Council Chairman; Sekou Biddle was temporarily appointed to the seat and is running for a full term. A number of Borderstan residents live in Ward 1, which is why we featured current candidates (and residents) Patrick Mara and Bryan Weaver. Since Lopez grew up in Ward 1 (Mount Pleasant) and Ward 2 (Shaw), we made an editorial decision to include him in the ‘softer side’ profile series as well even though he now lives in Ward 4.
• • • • • • • • • • • •
Borderstan: How long and where have you lived in D.C.?
Lopez: I am a native Washingtonian. I was born in Providence Hospital and spent my childhood in Mount Pleasant and Shaw. I moved to the Brightwood neighborhood 11 years ago.
Borderstan: Favorite thing about living in the neighborhood (both where you grew up and where you live now)?
Lopez: Mount Pleasant has an amazingly diverse population. I loved Shaw because of its close proximity to downtown. Brightwood has a rich history with outgoing neighbors.
Borderstan: Least favorite?
Lopez: Mount Pleasant has slowly lost its affordable housing threatening the diversity of the neighborhood. Shaw has had an ongoing problem with crime. They could use a better public safety plan. Brightwood should have better public transportation.
Borderstan: Tell us about yourself. What do you do, how’d you end up doing that and why do you love what you do?