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He didn’t get the Wilson Building job he wanted, but he still has the job that lets him go there a lot.
After a buzzy but ultimately unsuccessful bid to unseat D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, progressive advocate Ed Lazere is once again at the helm of the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute, the local think tank where he has worked since 2001. In January, Lazere took a leave of absence from DCFPI to run for office for the first time, campaigning to Mendelson’s left on issues like alleviating the negative effects of gentrification and development on the District’s low-income families and people of color.
He lost by about 30 percentage points in the June 19 Democratic primary, receiving 36 percent of the vote to Mendelson’s 63 percent. Although Lazere won some precincts in Ward 1 and one precinct in Ward 5, this was far from enough to topple Mendelson, who has been on the Council since 1999 and has citywide name recognition.
On Monday, Lazere announced his return to DCFPI in an email to the nonprofit’s followers. “I’m excited to be jumping back into DCFPI’s policy work and look forward to connecting with you in the coming weeks and months,” he wrote without mentioning the election.
In other words, he won’t be so far from the Wilson Building or out of touch with councilmembers. “I’ve spent many days working to get seven votes on the Council, which is what you need to win,” Lazere told City Paper earlier this year.