At least two established political groups in D.C. aren’t intimidated by the Fenty political machine.
The mayor’s choice to succeed him as the Ward 4 D.C. councilmember—-Muriel Bowser—-has piled up a lot of cash from politicos who have come to understand that helping Bowser translates into pleasing the mayor.
The D.C. Chamber of Commerce clearly isn’t so concerned about being a Fenty favorite. Ward 4 candidate Michael A. Brown tells LL that he has won the endorsement of the Chamber’s political action committee.
The Chamber’s nod bucks a trend set by the city’s political establishment. Most of the big-money bigwigs—-developer Herb Miller and hospital association bigwig Robert Malson, for instance—-have dutifully fallen in line behind Bowser. And it’s not like the Chamber couldn’t benefit from sucking up to Fenty: The group supported Linda Cropp in the 2006 democratic primary.
Chamber political action committee member Kelvin Robinson would only say that the group will announce their choice in Ward 4 on Wednesday.
This morning, Brown also stopped by the offices of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 20 to collect the local’s endorsement. The union’s backing wasn’t a big surprise. Council President Geo Johnson, who referred to the candidate as “Mike,” was a longtime pal of Brown’s father, Ronald Brown.
“I remember getting coffee for you guys,” Brown quipped during Johnson’s speech, which was heavy on criticism of the Fenty’s brand of machine politics. “The last political machine was [former Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley],” said Johnson. “We’re not going to have that in this city.”
AFSCME Council 20 spokesperson Dwight Kirk reports that Bowser was not even interviewed as part of the endorsement process. He claims her campaign was late in returning a questionnaire sent to all candidates.