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Muriel Bowser kicked off her Election Day effort the same way she started her victorious primary day: in a dark Navy Yard parking lot at 5:30 am, to the tune of Alicia Keys’ “Girl on Fire.”

Some things have changed. For one, some of the Vince Gray diehards who woke up on April 1 ready to defeat her are now asking for selfies with her. But Bowser’s speech to her supporters was the same: Be nice to opposing voters, and don’t start partying until the polls close.


The rally doubled as a meeting place for the more than 40 vans and minivans organized by the campaign for taking voters to polls. Also distributed: green foam “All 8 Wards” fingers, inspired by Bowser’s own thumbs-ups to drivers.

Bowser, ahead by double digits in recent polls after 19 months of campaigning, compared herself to a marathon runner.

“Are you going to run through the tape with me?” Bowser said. “I feel like running through the tape.”