D.C. Del. Walter E. Fauntroy (D) announced his support yesterday for Hilda Mason of the Statehood Party to fill the at-large City Council seat left vacant when Julius Hobson Sr. died March 23.
Fauntroy joins five Democratic City Council members, six key, members of the D.C. Democratic Committee, and school board President Therman Evans in in supporting Mason, 61, a former teacher and member of the D.C. school board.
The Greater Washington Central Labor Council also endorsed Mason as the candidate it supports in the July 19 special election. Mason is currently holding the at-large Council seat as an appointee of the Statehood Party until the special election.
Perhaps the most compelling reason for my decision to support a candidate is the necessity for continued unity and continuity in the development of our new city government." Fauntroy told reporters at a press conference on the steps of the House of Representatives.
"... I must endorse the individual I believe represents the best possible prospects for supporting our efforts for complete self-determination. I believe that individual is Mrs. Hilda Mason ..." Fauntroy said.
I urge those citizens who have worked for me to now work for Mrs. Mason." Fauntroy added, "Those voters who voted for me, I ask you to vaote for Hilda Mason."
Mason, who was at the morning press conference, told reporters that she has worked with Fauntroy before and "(Fauntroy's) support today for my cadidacy indicates the mutual respect that our work together has earned."
Fauntroy noted that there has been opposition to Democrats supporting a non-Democratic in the special election. Because Democrats already hold two of the three at-large seats on the City Council they could not field a candidate in the special election under city laws.
On June 8 the D.C. Democratic Committee decided against endorsing any candidates in the special election.
However individual members of the committee have since endorse Mason and Fauntroy said yesterday he felt "compelled to support a candidate.