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Loose Lips erroneously reports (3/28) that Democracy First, the citizens’ coalition responsible for leading the boisterous protest at Sen. Lauch Faircloth (R-N.C.)’s office on March 5, and the subsequent, and in the words of D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, “unprecedented and outstanding” hearing with him on March 20, was “the typical group of blowhard activists who foam at the mouth when Republican congressmen dis the city but turn into cowards when it comes to scolding local officials for incompetency.”
Apologists for the D.C. Council? Nothing could be further from
Democracy First’s primary agenda is to eliminate the current 13 member D.C. Council, and replace it with a 120-member “House of Delegates.” The purpose of this new D.C. legislature is to bring good governance to the District of Columbia for the first time in history, to secure adequate oversight of a $5.2-billion annual city budget and over 100 city agencies, to reduce costs of govemment through more effective oversight, to guarantee a better balance of power between the legislative and executive branches of government, to create a D.C. legislature that is comparable in size to other state legislatures serving similar populations, with a much more favorable constituent-to-representative ratio (4,500:1 as opposed to the current 68,750:1), to assure ethnic diversity in the District’s legislature, to elevate the quality of our future political leadership, and to effectuate much needed campaign license reform in local elections.
By creating a more inclusive legislature that is structurally better suited to cope with the many statelike responsibilities our unique urban center bears, we believe that a truly dynamic District politics can finally be born, bringing real accountability and responsibility to local self-governance. Apologists for local officials we most certainly are not.