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Breaking News: Kinlow Already Out

updated: 10: 26 p.m.
Eugene Kinlow, outreach director for DC Vote, announced tonight at the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club endorsement meeting that he is dropping out of the race for shadow senator. He just picked up petitions on Friday.

Could that leave incumbent Paul Strauss without competion in the September primary?

Don't worry. Philip Pannell, longtime political operative and always in the mix, announced that he is now in the race. Not to mention, Robert Vinson Brannum, who is already everywhere, is also a Democratic candidate.

Kinlow said in an interview that he decided that he could not mix his job working for D.C. voting rights with being an elected official working for D.C. voting rights. "I really feel like a shadow senator now," he said.

But, he added, "this is not about me...I didn't think I could do both of them as well as I could do one of them."

In stepped Pannell. "I didn't decide to get in until two hours ago," he said, looking at his watch while at the endorsement meeting.

Pannell, a Ward 8 resident who said someone from east of the Anacostia River should be on the Hill, was giddy.

Pannell won a runoff against Strauss with 54 percent of the vote to 44 percent. That was 26 to 21, by the way. It wasn't enough to get an official endorsement from the gay Democrats' group, but it gave him a boost of confidence. "That was without a campaign," he said.

Strauss and Pannell ended up facing off after an initial vote resulted in 52 percent for Strauss and 33 percent for Pannell. Kinlow and Brannum came in third and fourth, respectively. (Guess some folks didn't want Kinlow to drop out.)

Pannell must have picked up some Kinlow/Brannum fans.

Strauss said he plans to campaign aggressively.

Meanwhile, the other endorsement contests were less dramatic.

Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2), poised to continue his 17-year reign, handily won the endorsement with 87 percent of the vote over opponent Cary Silverman.

Council member Yvette M. Alexander (D-Ward 7), Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton and Shadow Representative Michael Panetta -- all without competition last night -- received endorsements by a show of hands.

By Nikita R Stewart  |  May 12, 2008; 8:46 PM ET
Categories:  2008 District Election  
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Next: No Self-Oppression on D.C Voting Rights; That's Congress' Job

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