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Adam Clampitt Drops Out, Mike Brown Gets More Than Endorsement

Independent at-large candidate Adam Clampitt will announce Monday that he is dropping out of the race and endorsing fellow independent Michael A. Brown.

But Brown is getting more than his endorsement, he will get Clampitt's team. Clampitt's political director, field director and campaign manager will move over to Brown, said Lewis Thomas III, Brown's campaign manager.

"They are brilliant and qualified young people. Based on my assessment, they were doing a great job for Adam Clampitt," he said. "We wanted to truly merge our teams together."

Brown, son of late secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown, has been on the losing end of two high-profile campaigns in two years. In 2006, he dropped out of the mayoral race and endorsed Linda W. Cropp's failed bid against Adrian M. Fenty (D). Last year, he lost the special election for Fenty's Ward 4 council seat to Muriel Bowser.

But his name recognition, coupled with one less person in the November General Election for two at-large seats, could make him a contender, Thomas said.

Council member Kwame R. Brown (D) and Carol Schwartz (R) are running for reelection. While Brown has not competition in his Democratic primary in September, Schwartz, a longtime incumbent, is up against newcomer Patrick Mara in the Republican contest.

Thomas said he is focused on preparing Brown for November.

He came on board in April after getting kicked off the ballot in Pennsylvania, where he was running for state representative.

Though Thomas was tagged as a bright newcomer in politics there, he did not meet the four-year residency requirement. He voted in D.C. in 2004. Plus, he had a D.C. driver's license. "It was an obscure clause," said Thomas, who fought the ballot removal all the way to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

It was a split decision. But it made him decide to take up Brown's offer to run his campaign.

"I'm going to get Michael Brown elected....Then, I will be running in 18 months," he said.

By Nikita R Stewart  |  July 11, 2008; 5:21 PM ET
Categories:  2008 District Election  
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