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LL didn’t expect rats to be the hottest issue in the Ward 1 race, but here we are. Following D.C. Councilmember Jim Graham‘s introduction of an anti-rat bill Tuesday, challenger Brianne Nadeau is out with a statement saying Graham is all wrong on rat killing.

Graham’s bill would require businesses with food licenses to submit a plan for reducing rats nearby. In her release, Nadeau accuses Graham of being late to the rat problem in Ward 1 neighborhoods like Adams Morgan and U Street. She’s backed up by the manager of the company that operates U Street area restaurants (and alleged swagger-jackers) Marvin and The Brixton, who says in the release that Graham’s rat plan requirement would create an unnecessary burden on new restaurants.

Nadeau, who says rats are the top issues she hears about on the campaign, tells LL that she wants to see an anti-rat agenda that also covers residential areas and getting businesses to cooperate on shared alleys.

Graham, whose rat knowledge memorably includes the detail that “dog poop…is like an energy bar to rats,” says his rat policy isn’t coming out of nowhere. In an email to LL, Graham says his “realistic” rat plan requirement comes from information discussed in a November “rat summit.”

“A rat can live on battery cables so pizza is a great treat,” writes Graham.

Photo by Jule Banville