Ward 1 candidate Brianne Nadeau

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Challengers ruled at last night’s Gertrude Stein Democratic Club endorsement vote, with both Ward 1 challenger Brianne Nadeau and at-large hopeful Nate Bennett-Fleming receiving more votes from the LGBT-focused club than their incumbent rivals.

Nadeau received 70 votes from members to incumbent Jim Graham‘s 64, with club president Angela Peoples calling Nadeau’s victory “somewhat of a surprise” in a statement. Still, Nadeau fell 10 votes short of earning the club’s endorsement.

Bennett-Fleming also beat incumbent Anita Bonds in the balloting for the at-large race, receiving 68 votes to her 51 in a run-off after three other candidates were eliminated in the first vote. Bennett-Fleming, like Nadeau, didn’t have enough votes to win the club’s endorsement.

The importance of a Stein win can be contested by losing campaigns, since all it takes to vote is coughing up a membership fee and signing up in advance of the election. When LL talked to gay activist Rick Rosendall about his own group’s rankings earlier this month, Rosendall remarked that they held extra weight since “we don’t allow the packing of these meetings, like they do in Stein.”

Ahead of the vote, one Wilson Building wag familiar with the process told LL that he figured he could secure the Stein endorsement for any candidate by spending $500 on membership fees, then make the money back in contributions that the endorsement would earn.

After the jump, more endorsement news:

The Chosen People Get Choosey

The Jews United for Justice Campaign Fund, a 501(c)(4) associated with lefty Jewish group Jews United for Justice, endorsed Nadeau (a former member of its board) in Ward 1, Charles Allen in Ward 6, and Bennett-Fleming in the at-large race.

Sunglasses for Good Government

Who will win the coveted Sulaimon Brown endorsement? Who even knew it was up for grabs? The mysterious Vince Gray 2010 stalking horse and sunglasses afficionado sent out a press release today building up hype for his eventual mayoral and at-large endorsement. Not the endorsements themselves, mind you (although LL would bet on Brown repeating his 2013 Bonds endorsement).

While Gray benefitted from Brown’s help in debates last year, he won’t be getting Brown’s OK this time around. In his release, Brown calls Gray a “con artist and crook” and urges right-thinking Washingtonians to boot Gray and “his ruthless bunch of lawless thug’s” (sic) from the Wilson Building.

A Boost for Bonds

The D.C. chapter of the National Organization of Women endorsed Bonds yesterday in the at-large race.

Busboys and Socialists

Muriel Bowser apologized to Andy Shallal again last night for calling him a “rich socialist,” but the socialists don’t mind. The District chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America endorsed Shallal today, citing “his support of social and economic justice.”

Grosso Approved

After endorsing Nadeau over current Council colleague Graham in Ward 1, Independent At-Large David Grosso is keeping his endorsement hand strong. In a press release yesterday, Grosso endorsed Allen in the Ward 6 race, saying he needs Allen to join him on the Council on ethics and education issues.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery