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Posted at 03:03 PM ET, 09/22/2010

Fenty write-in campaigns begin

In the first of what are expected to be several similar efforts in the coming weeks, a "Run, Fenty, Run" page has appeared on Facebook urging voters to write in Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's name on their ballots in the Nov. 2 general election.

The page, which appears to have been created the three days after Fenty lost the Democratic nomination to D.C. Council Vincent C. Gray last week, already has 2,106 followers.

"We are citizens of Washington, DC who like the job Adrian Fenty has done as mayor, and who want to vote for him in November," the page states. "We are considering a write-in campaign -- if there is enough support. If you think Fenty is a good mayor, and if you would consider writing in his name in November, please click "like" on this page, and get others to do the same."

In recent days, Fenty has all but ruled out mounting a write-in a campaign. Last week, he declined the GOP nomination for mayor after more than 800 Republicans wrote his name on their primary ballot. Fenty also enthusiastically endorsed Gray at a D.C. Democratic State Committee unity breakfast on Thursday.

But unofficial Fenty write-in campaigns are expected to persist through the general election.

Paul Craney, executive director of the D.C. Republican Committee, said he expects that many Republicans will once again write in Fenty's name on their general election ballot because the party is not fielding a candidate.

"I think there is an undercurrent of disasstifciation with Vincent Gray and, to be honest with you, what happened in the primary was organic and I don't see that stopping in the next six weeks," Craney said. "If Vince Gray spends more time talking about firing (Schools Chancellor) Michelle Rhee and (Police Chief) Cathy Lanier, that is only going to be like putting gasoline on a fire."

Ronald Moten, a Fenty friend and strategist, said he's also heard talk of Fenty supporters mounting unofficial write-in campaigns.

"I've heard a lot of people say they are not voting for Gray," Moten said. "That is what I am hearing on the streets, so anything is possible."

Moten, one of Fenty's chief boosters during the campaign, added he won't be supporting Gray in the general because he thinks he ran "a crooked campaign."

"As all of this stuff comes out and people feel like they got cheated, who knows what will happen with a write-in," Moten said.

Sean Madigan, a Fenty spokesman, was not immediately available for comment.

--Tim Craig

By  |  03:03 PM ET, 09/22/2010

Categories:  2010 District Election

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