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Evans in chairman's race

D.C. Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) said Wednesday that he's "definitely running" for council chairman in the September Democratic primary, a race he said he has been "preparing for for years."

"This is an opportunity, and I look forward to it," Evans said.

Evans will most likely face council member Kwame Brown (D-At Large), who has also been working the phones in recent days to try to line up support. But other candidates could also emerge.

Neither Brown, who chairs the Economic Development Committee, nor Evans, chairman of the Committee on Finance and Revenue, will have to give up their council seats to seek the chairman's slot. The current chairman, Vincent C. Gray (D), announced Tuesday that he will challenge Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) instead of seeking reelection.

WTOP reported Wednesday that Evans would be closely aligned with Fenty during the campaign. But Evans said he's running his "own race" and doesn't need help from Fenty to get his campaign off the ground.

Evans, the longest-serving council member, was first elected in 1991. In 1998, he mounted an unsuccessful campaign for mayor, finishing third behind former Mayor Anthony Williams and Kevin P. Chavous.

Evans, who represents some of the city's wealthiest communities as well as the downtown business community, should be a prolific fundraiser. But Evans could still struggle to win support from African Americans in a two-way race with Brown, who is black and who was the top-vote getter in the 2008 at-large race.

Evans is socially liberal but a fiscal moderate. He has generally been opposed to higher taxes and believes the city government needs to take advantage of tax credits and other incentives to attract new business to the city. His positions often put him at odds with some liberal interest groups. But Evans will probably have a base of support in vote-rich Northwest Washington.

"I wouldn't run if I didn't think I can win," Evans said.

-- Tim Craig

By Washington Post Editors  |  March 31, 2010; 11:19 AM ET
Categories:  2010 District Election , D.C. Council , Mayor Fenty , Tim Craig , Vincent C. Gray  
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Jack Evans a fiscal moderate? You'd better ask somebody who lives in the real world. I live on Capitol Hill and look forward to voting against reckless-spending-with-the taxpayers-money, Jack Evans.

Posted by: billthrice | March 31, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

@billthrice: anyone who follows the basics of dc government knows that evans is, in fact, a fiscal moderate. its called not raising taxes, my friend. you should thank him for not paying more property tax and income tax over the past 10 years. evans is is the clear choice for council chair. kwame is all style and no substance.

Posted by: onthecontrary | April 1, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

A snowball stands a better chance in hades than Jack Evans does in getting a vote from me. Not today, tomorrow, or EVER.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | April 1, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

A snowball, Mickey Mouse...whoever runs against jack evans will win! Ask people outside of ward 2 who is he...most don't after all of those years on the council of doing nothing...we don't need more of nothing!

Posted by: | April 3, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

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