The Washington Post

Muriel Bowser knocking on doors to kick off D.C. mayoral campaign

Muriel Bowser speaks to an audience at a candidates forum Feb. 23. (Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post)

D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser has begun showing up at residents’ doors asking them to support her as the city’s next mayor, walking neighborhoods in three wards over the weekend.

Bowser, who announced her 2014 campaign for mayor last month, is hoping to replicate the success of her political mentor, Adrian M. Fenty (D), who began knocking on doors two years before his winning 2006 bid for mayor.

On Saturday, Bowser joined several other former Fenty staffers — who still refer to themselves as the “green team” — in vote-rich Precinct 66 in Northeast in Ward 5. Bowser said Monday that she was energized by the response.

“People want a new mayor,” said Bowser, in a jab at Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D). “The willingness of people to talk, stay engaged with my campaign, and put up a yard sign is very encouraging to my campaign just five weeks into it.”

Bowser said she also knocked on doors this weekend in wards 3 and 4 in Northwest. On Tuesday, Bowser accompanied some of her “green team” volunteers to 15 precincts during the special election for an at-large seat on the D.C. Council.

Bowser said her pace will only accelerate over the summer.

“Obviously, we will be in all the wards, “ said Bowser, who is featured on the cover of last week’s Washington City Paper.

D.C. Council member Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6) is also considering running for mayor. Wells launched an exploratory campaign in February and has been holding community meetings across the city to gauge his chances.

Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) and David A. Catania (I-At Large) are also pondering campaigns but have not yet taken public steps toward doing so.

On Monday, The Washington Post’s Mike DeBonis reported that former city administrator Robert C. Bobb is taking “discreet steps” to explore a run for mayor as a Democrat.

Gray, meanwhile, is keeping his options open about whether he plans to seek reelection.

The Democratic primary for mayor has been scheduled for April 1. Candidates can begin circulating their petitions in November.

Tim Craig is The Post’s bureau chief in Pakistan. He has also covered conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan and within the District of Columbia government.



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