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The more, the merrier


D.C. restaurateur Andy Shallal, center, kicks off his bid for mayor Tuesday at Ben’s Chili Bowl. (Aaron C. Davis/The Washington Post)

D.C. officially got two new mayoral candidates Tuesday. Busboys & Poets owner Andy Shallal kicked off his first political campaign at Ben’s Chili Bowl with a few gentle swipes at incumbent Vincent C. Gray — saying, The Post’s Aaron C. Davis reports, that Hizzoner spends too much time “counting cranes” and that the city needs a better vision than the anodyne “One City.” But are voters ready for a candidate who pledges to put artists “at every meeting, at every table” and who proposes letting 17-year-olds vote in city elections? (More from WTTG-TVLoose LipsWAMU-FMDCistWUSA-TVAP) Meanwhile, D.C. Council member Vincent Orange (D-At Large) cleared up any lingering doubts about his intentions in a interview Tuesday, saying he’s in it to win it with a populist message calling for ramped up government spending on affordable housing, job training and more. Shallal and Orange have been invited to join the four other major mayoral candidates tonight at the first candidates forum of the campaign season, hosted by the D.C. Bar. A few seats are still available!

In other news:

Ron Kirby, regional transportation guru, is shot dead in his Alexandria home, shocking city political leaders (PostDr. GridlockWBJ)

Reta Lewis discusses her outsider candidacy (DCist)

Tommy Wells solidifies his advantage in celebrity-chef endorsements (@chefjoseandres)

Michelle Obama kicks off college-attendance push at Bell Multicultural High School (Post)

Hey Vince, Ted Leonsis has a donation waiting for you — but can you fix the traffic lights first? (Post)

Interim UDC president says he is not sticking around for long (Post)

D.C. man, 69, his daughter and grandson are killed in Virginia crash (Post)

Southern Avenue home invasion involved gruesome sexual assault (WaTimes)

Transgender inmates get limited exemption from D.C. jail razor ban (Metro Weekly)

Texas-based charter school chain with controversial past wants in on D.C. (Post)

DCPS unveils redesigned report cards (WRC-TV)

Michael Brown would very much like to spend Christmas in Florida (AP)

Inside the downtown start-up scene and its “nerdy, almost obsessive devotion to the minutiae of politics and policy” (The Switch)

Hey, another NoMa movie theater proposal! (Capital Business)

What Ralph Nader’s lawyer believes should have been included in my recent West End Library story (Post letter)

“Million Mask March” protester brought guns, bomb materials to Potomac Park (WJLA-TV)

Supermarket workers union extends contract negotiations till Dec. 15 (Post)

DDOT says it is considering making changes to the L Street cycletrack (WJLA-TV)

Load up your SmarTrip in the street, not on the bus (PlanItMetro)

It’s even harder being a hack inspector now (Post)

Teamsters say they’ve signed up 1,800 D.C. cab drivers (DCist)

GSA watchdog wants to make sure FBI swap is a fair deal (WBJ)

Clinton Yates and Ed Lazere talk Whole Foods and gentrification (Post TV)

The D.C. Historical Studies Conference kicks off this weekend with a look at black political activism during the Civil War (Post column)

Stadium Club security sues D.C. cop, Ravens player over June incident (D.C. Crime Stories)

Catholic University business school gets $1 million grant from Koch brother (WBJ)

Another D.C. Circuit nominee is voted down (Legal Times)

Streetcar wires start installation today (WAMU-FM)

Dimitar Peshev Plaza is now official (AP)

Watch a video, help find a murder suspect (WRC-TV)

Driver almost hits pedestrian, thinks she got too many tickets (WTOP)

Eleanor Holmes Norton drives electric Bimmer (Roll Call)

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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