D.C. GOP demands elections board chair


Great GOP hope Patrick Mara, who is 0-for-2 on his D.C. Council runs. (BILL O'LEARY/THE WASHINGTON POST)

Today, for instance, DCGOP Chairman Bob Kabel is calling on Democratic Mayor Vincent C. Gray to appoint a Republican as chair of the Board of Elections and Ethics, arguing that Togo West’s sudden departure “creates a unique opportunity for the Mayor to show he is serious about ethics reform.”

“This will send shock waves throughout District politics that this Mayor will do whatever it takes to bring about ethics reform,” Kabel said in a release.

That, of course, is why it probably won’t happen.

Also, as my colleague Tim Craig notes on Twitter:

@mikedebonis GOP didn’t even field candidate for mayor or at-large in 10, but now it thinks it deserves to be chair of elections board?less than a minute ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® Favorite Retweet ReplyTim Craig
timcraigpost

That said, a board seat reserved for a non-Democrat has been vacant for more than a year. There’s no law that says a Republican has to fill it, but the DCGOP release argues that “[a]ccording to District law and tradition, a Republican has always been a member of the DCBOEE.” I reported in June that the party was pushing lawyer Stephen Danzansky for the post.

But Gray is certainly within his rights to pick an independent (16.3 percent of city voters!) or Statehood Green or Libertarian. If I were a city Republican, I’d be concerned about doth protesting too much.

Mike DeBonis covers Congress and national politics for The Washington Post. He previously covered D.C. politics and government from 2007 to 2015.
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