Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Last-minute lobbying on elected AG ballot question


It's flown pretty well under the radar, but the question being put to D.C. voters of whether to elect the city's attorney general is the subject of some last-minute campaigning.

Automated phone calls have gone out from groups supporting and opposing the change to the city charter, which would require an act of Congress regardless of the voters' will passing a congressional review period before becoming law.

Stumping against an elected AG is the National Black Church Initiative, a group led by the Rev. Anthony Evans, who was also a leading voice opposing the legalization of same-sex marriage in the District. The group sent robocalls over the weekend to an unspecified number of city households.

Evans said Monday morning that his opposition to an elected AG is mostly on fiscal grounds: "If the city continues to cut the budget, go after entitlements, our congregations are going to suffer," Evans said. "For us to authorize another major expenditure, it's just irresponsible." (For the record, the Office of the Chief Financial Officer has not foreseen a grave fiscal impact, though the current AG, Peter Nickles, disagrees, arguing the mayor will have to hire a new corps of lawyers to represent his own viewpoint.)

While Evans does not count himself a fan of Nickles, who wrote several key documents supporting the legalization of gay marriage, he argued that a mayor "needs to be able to count on his attorney general" and the city needs "four years of continuity," adding that he fears the "power-hungry attitude of some in this city."

Also issuing robocalls -- in addition to a sign-hanging campaign and some poll work -- is the "Yes on Amendment Four Committee." Paul Strauss, the city's elected shadow senator, is the most prominent face of the campaign, which he said is composed of "mostly lawyers and good government types."

Strauss argues for a switch to an elected top lawyer on self-determination grounds -- put simply, that District residents starved of congressional representation need all the democracy they can get. Like Evans, he played down the role that the controversial Nickles played in getting the matter onto the ballot.

"It's not about a person," he said. "It's about a process."

By Mike DeBonis  | November 1, 2010; 5:16 PM ET
Categories:  DCision 2010, The District  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Graham defends Wade against Mara's strong school board challenge
Next: Hosts of Gray's victory party owe city $860K in taxes

No comments have been posted to this entry.

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.

characters remaining

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company