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DeMorning DeBonis: Nov. 3, 2010

TODAY IS NOV. 3, 2010 -- 60 DAYS UNTIL INAUGURATION

PREVIOUSLY -- Fenty write-in supporters make a statement -- Voter uses Fenty stamp on voting-machine screen -- Polls open smoothly in District

To wrap up Tuesday's results, I'll revisit the questions I posed a day ago:

1. How well will the write-in-ers do? They did pretty darn well, winning nearly 23 percent of the unofficial citywide tally and 43 percent in Ward 3 -- sending a message to Vincent Gray that "One City" will have to be more than a phrase. Viva la "democratic process."

2. How close will the GOP come to a victory? Not close at all. In fact, if the idea was actually to win a council seat, the Republicans' strategy of focusing on ward races flopped mightily -- especially in Wards 1 and 5, where third-party candidates outpolled them. In Ward 3, David Hedgepeth was unable to capitalize on Mary Cheh's Fenty snub, winning no better than 34 percent. Perhaps ex-Ward 2 candidate Cary Silverman would welcome a new contributor to his "Other 35 Percent" blog?

3. Can Patrick Mara eke out a win? He did indeed. Early returns from eastern Ward 1 had the State Board of Education candidate trailing incumbent Dotti Love Wade, but late precincts from the ward's gentrifying south and west reaches pushed him to a hard-won victory. Wade's loss is an embarrassment to her patron, council member Jim Graham, who did too little too late to help her listless campaign.

4. Is an elected attorney general in our future? It most certainly is. Three of four District voters would prefer to have someone new to vote into office four years from now. Barring an unlikely congressional intervention in the next 35 legislative days, the city's political posturing will gain a new dimension. Early names mentioned for the post: David Catania, Deborah Royster, A. Scott Bolden.

5. Does Gerry Connolly survive? It looks as though he just might, by the slimmest of margins. Two precincts are still to be counted in Fairfax County, with Democrat Connolly leading Republican Keith Fimian by fewer than 500 votes with a recount looming. The District might still have a friend in Virginia.

AFTER THE JUMP -- Harry Thomas gets some time to produce nonprofit documents -- full election news and reactions

*** MAIN COURSE ***

CITIZEN VINCE -- Only one must-read today: Nikita Stewart's examination of Vincent Gray's underrated political savvy: "Gray's triumphant rise as the District's seventh mayor appears swift and inadvertent. In six years, he went from running the nonprofit Covenant House to mayor of the nation's capital. But his friends, advisers and one-time opponents describe him as a man who has been at the right place at the right time and always prepared to take advantage of every opportunity. In the primary, Fenty's $5 million campaign coffers scared away most competitors. Outmatched by an army of Fenty paid workers, Gray cobbled together support from labor unions and business interests to pull off what some thought impossible a year ago. Gray also abandoned door-to-door knocking, the campaign tool that became the stuff of politicking lore because of Fenty's holey-soled shoes in 2006. Instead, Gray met voters in their living rooms and back yards and talked to them about balancing the budget, training residents for jobs and expanding public education. 'In many ways, his campaigning style is a throwback,' said former Ward 7 council member Kevin P. Chavous, unseated by Gray in 2004 in his first public-office win. 'The new consultant tells you to touch as many people as possible. He touches less people, but the conversations are probably more meaningful. ... That approach has worked for him.'"


*** SMALL PLATES ***

Harry Thomas Jr. has three weeks to cough up nonprofit documents (Post)

The Board of Elections and Ethics took its sweet time reporting results. Again. (D.C. Wire)

It's Kwame Brown's time to shine (Post)

Jonetta Rose Barras has some good organizational advice for Brown -- and some interesting intel: "Gray has lobbied Brown to appoint Ward 3's Mary Cheh chairwoman pro tempore and head of the education committee." She;d prefer Catania as ed-committee chair (Examiner)

At least one write-in-er is a real numbskull (DeBonis)

National coverage couldn't save write-in campaign (WSJ)

Interesting morning at Precinct 141 (DCist)

OCF ordered write-in campaigners to stop using old Fenty signs (Loose Lips)

Key ANC result: Bob Siegel, gay entrepreneur/impresario, ousted from his Near Southeast sinecure by Tommy Wells-backed challenger (JDLand.com)

Eleanor Holmes Norton: "You wouldn't have thought Congress could get more polarizing than it was under (former Speaker) Newt Gingrich, but this may be that Congress" (D.C. Wire)

Georgetown not down with Gray (Patch)

Dave Weigel wrote Fenty in, along with Carol Schwartz (Slate)

One guy wrote in Fenty "because, who knows, he might win" (The Hill)

Kudos JVLaB: Never heard a better description of David Schwartzman than "the nutty professor" (Examiner)

Tax amnesty brings in $20.8 million, beating expectations a bit (WBJ)

Virginia says it won't take animals evicted by "Wildlife Protection Act" (Examiner)

D.C. parents love charter schools (Examiner)

Michelle Rhee not married yet (Reliable Source)

Rhee's last day was Friday. Or Monday. Whatever, she's gone now. (D.C. Schools Insider)

In case you're not sick of reading things about Rhee, here is a "critique, point by point" (Answer Sheet)

God, I miss working with this guy (Loose Lips)


*** ON THE MENU **

Gray expected to hold noon press conference at the Reeves Center to announce his transition team -- check D.C. Wire for updates

By Mike DeBonis  | November 3, 2010; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Mike, The District  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Fenty write-in supporters make a statement
Next: D.C. Republicans in danger of becoming 'minor' party

Comments

Who care what "Barrtheass" has to say.

Celebrate your republican victories and stop trying to influence DC. You have no credibility.

Posted by: dccounselor72 | November 3, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

HUH???

Vince Gray REVERSED the electorate in Ward 3.

Won every Ward, nearly every ward in Skeptical Ward 3, where people seem to actually read and belive ths crap.

VINCE GRAY WINS MANDATE!

WaPo, you guys are so full of dung. Shameful.

The Washingt Post is dead, amateurs asleep at the wheel, and pushing nonsense into our community.

Posted by: tcs1999 | November 3, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

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