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Posted at 12:03 PM ET, 01/ 4/2011

Cheh, Thomas, Bowser support Biddle in at-large race

By Tim Craig

Three D.C. Council members said Tuesday they are supporting Sekou Biddle's bid to win the vacant at-large seat on the council, aligning themselves with Council Chairman Kwame Brown's (D) views on the race.

In interviews with the Washington Post, Council members Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3), Muriel Bowser (D-Ward 4) and Harry Thomas Jr. (D-Ward 5) all said they hope Biddle wins the D.C. Democratic State Committee endorsement vote Thursday night.

Biddle, a school board member, is locked in what many believe is a close race between him and former council member Vincent Orange for the nomination. Calvin H. Gurley, Stanley J. Mayes and Dorothy Douglas are also candidates, adding a level of unpredictability as Biddle and Orange vie to get majority support from the 80-member state committee.

Thomas, who represents Orange's former council district, said he's supporting Biddle to "support the chairman." On Monday, Brown endorsed Biddle.

Bowser said she is supporting Biddle because he lives in her ward. She also praised his "record of service" and dedication to "children and schools."

Cheh said she's been "trying to help" Biddle for weeks, but only decided to go public with her support Tuesday.

"I've tried to call people on the Ward 3 Democratic State Committee and conferred with them and gave them my views," Cheh said. "I just think Sekou will make a wonderful council member."

Other council members interviewed said they are still undecided or not ready to publicly state their preference in the race.

The race is being held to fill a vacancy created when Brown gave up his at-large seat to become council chairman. The state Democratic committee's selection will assume office immediately pending a special election in the spring, in which any registered voter can participate.

--Tim Craig

By Tim Craig  | January 4, 2011; 12:03 PM ET
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This is a complete farce that a political party gets to pick who fills an open, at-large, seat on the Council. There should just be an open election and that's it.

Posted by: blankspace | January 4, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I agree blankspace. DC local politics are corrupt.

Posted by: Ward4DC | January 4, 2011 4:42 PM | Report abuse

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