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Rep. Jared Polis endorses Fenty at gay campaign event


If Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's facing dwindling support in the city's gay and lesbian community, it certainly wasn't apparent on the upper floor of the Halo nightclub Wednesday night.

Well over 100 Fenty supporters packed the Logan Circle club Wednesday night for a "meet and greet" for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Washingtonians. They heard Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) -- one of three openly gay members of Congress, along with Reps. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.) and Barney Frank (D-Mass.) -- introduce Fenty and endorse him for a second term.

While Polis acknowledged that Fenty had signed a landmark bill authorizing gay marriages in the District, he spent much of his remarks praising Fenty's record on education, noting his years of service on the Colorado State Board of Education.

Fenty has come under some criticism from members of the politically potent gay activist community is recent weeks. Lane Hudson, an activist supporting Gray, accused Fenty of being "MIA" on gay issues in a Washington Blade op-ed. And last week, Peter Rosenstein, an erstwhile supporter of Fenty's, unleashed a 5,000-word broadside against Fenty's performance as mayor in the same publication.

But the Halo fundraiser attracted a large and diverse crowd -- including several advisory neighborhood commissioners and at least one supporter of his opponent.

Lee Brian Reba, a former deputy chief of staff to Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray, was in attendance. "I'm on Team Gray, but I'm supportive of the mayor. ... I don't think it's fair the way he's been criticized in the gay community," Reba said, before invoking Gray's campaign slogan. "Tonight was to come together. ... At the end of the day, we're still one city."

A survey of attendees found many, like Polis, were quick to cite education and other non-GLBT issues in expressing their support for Fenty.

"I really like what he and Michelle Rhee are trying to do with the schools," said Cary Plair, a Logan Circle resident who has school-age nephews in the city.

"Crime is down, so business is better," said D.C. Allen, a Dupont Circle resident who has owned the Crew Club gym on 14th Street NW since the early '90s.

He, too, supports Fenty's education efforts. "So many young gay and lesbian couples are having children that it is important that we have a netter school system," said Allen. "An educational system is probably the most important thing a city can have."

By Mike DeBonis  |  July 1, 2010; 9:49 AM ET
Categories:  Adrian Fenty , DCision 2010 , The District  
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Posted by: sixluv | July 1, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Fenty didn't bust any go go moves at the Halo?

Posted by: starclimber9 | July 1, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Congress already has too much say over our local politics. Polis should butt out.

Posted by: DCCharles | July 1, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Wait one second...was the Mayor in attendance or were we once again ignored? No indication in this story that he was there! Can someone please tell me.

Posted by: johnklenert | July 1, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't Congress have enough oversight of DC without meddling in local elections too? They don't vote or pay taxes here, so why are they endorsing politicians?

Posted by: PepperDr | July 1, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't Congress have enough oversight of DC without meddling in local elections too? They don't vote or pay taxes here, so why are they endorsing politicians?

Posted by: PepperDr | July 1, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

From Article on the blog, Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education dated December 18, 2009, as follows:

Red Flags Regarding Michelle Rhee,
Stop the Canonization by the Press
December 18th 2009 Posted to All
There is a large and vocal support of Michelle Rhee in the press. I beg to differ and to offer an opinion and some research that the reporters, and her friends have not examined to think about her policies.No one speaks for many who have worked in urban, or rural or
difficult education for years without any support, funding or publicity. Maybe some of these people should attend the Think Tanks on Scholarship to tell their truths or at least question the soothsayers.

I am a citizen of Washington DC. I have taught in a school in my neighborhood in South west. No, I am not one of her victims. I taught in Arlington, Virginia for years, I taught in DODDS schools in Baumholder, GDE, and I have taught using technology in every state in the US but Montana, and North Dakota. I am not unaware of the plight of the Native American students, nor the Hispanic students. I am the digital equity chair of two educational organizations and we study these ideas and talk about them for our members, this essay however, reflects my own views.

Empowerment and Enterprise Zones

I taught in an initiative for the White House that crossed the country in areas of need and especially in urban areas. I have friends wo have invited me to Mississippi to teach and it was a wonderful experience, I have worked in 22 countries in educational technology during WSIS and for the GAID. The work in developing nations is not much different that the problem of the places without broadband. The key to successful education is teacher professional development of a quality nature.

My Beef, The Canonization of Ms . Rhee as the only Educational Leader

The Wall Street Journal recently wondered out loud why Michelle Rhee is not supported by the President.

Heavens forbid such a thing should happen!

Ms. Rhee is a business entrepreneur. She has worked her way into the think tanks of the rich and famous along with Mayor Bloomberg. She had a very brief teaching experience in Baltimore. She admits that in her short time of teaching that she was not very good.

Her plan works well economically, dump the older teachers, close and consolidate the schools and save the mayor money. Oh and get rid of the Union influence. This has been brought before the think tanks of the US. You know, the ones that most of us cannot afford. They cost anywhere from $4,000 to $10,000.
Regular people are not able to attend these thought police programs.

The programs bring her out as a provocative speaker. She is their rock star.
Her project is Teach for America. The ideas of the project are not bad. That students go to the best schools and then dedicate their time to schools in need is not a bad one.

Posted by: bill121 | July 1, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: FentybackMountain | July 1, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Hey Mike, I like your new blog. You still have some of the best nose for news around. But unless I missed it (which could be possible), I didn't see anything about the Washington Post editorial slamming Fenty for being a no-show at the Education Forum. Like I said, I could have missed it.

Posted by: tacard1 | July 1, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

It's now called Mova, not Halo. And Crew Club isn't really a gym.

Posted by: DJTMY | July 2, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

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