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Last week’s cover story from Jeffrey Anderson was an archaeological dig of sorts, a reportorial unpacking of how a white, Trump-supporting Republican was able to win a citywide election—with surprising help from black voters. Though Ashley Carter’s race against D.C. State Board of Education incumbent Mary Lord, a Democrat, was nonpartisan, the District is most assuredly not, which is why we felt the November political upset that was virtually ignored in the local media deserved some attention and explanation. Carter is a woman, after all, who spends her days working for a national nonprofit outfit that argues the gender wage gap is no big deal.
Anderson’s reporting turned up a number of interesting nuances, among them the sense from activists east of the river that their disillusionment with current education representatives trumped (so to speak) party affiliation. But Carter also deployed some questionable campaign tactics, such as misleading mail pieces in Wards 7 and 8 that wrongly suggested she was politically aligned with former Mayor Vince Gray, who ran for and won his old seat on the D.C. Council in 2016.
It turns out there was more. “Really, REALLY disappointed that the author of this article didn’t mention or ASK Ashley about her use of photos of children in her ads without the parents permission?” angieanderson1 commented on our website. “And when those parents tried to talk to Ashley about their children being used for the ads without their permission, she blocked them on Twitter and Facebook.” (More on this in Loose Lips, p. 7.)
Others cited Carter’s victory as micro evidence that the GOP’s macro hopes for a second Donald Trump term could be realized four years from now. “Steve Bannon maybe too optimistic re @realdonaldtrump winning 40% of black vote in 2020 but path to 25-30 is there,” Nathan Field tweeted with a link to the piece.
And from LeeLee came another prediction: “She won’t be re-elected.”