D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) easily won reelection yesterday but ended up diminished citywide. Facing token opposition, Bowser cruised to victory, capturing 76 percent of the votes for mayor. But she fell behind other winners in citywide races, landing next-to-last in votes captured at the polls. Many voters apparently decided to skip over her name on the ballot.
The vote totals tell the story:
Attorney General Karl Racine (D): 193,885
Council Chairman Phil Mendelson (D): 185,578
Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D): 185,535
“Shadow U.S. Representative” Franklin Garcia (D): 184,924
“Shadow Senator” Michael D. Brown (D): 166,983
Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D): 159,820
Council member Anita Bonds (D): 142,266
Bowser’s lagging citywide vote totals also mirror her diminished political clout. Her attempt to kick her rival and political nuisance incumbent Elissa Silverman (I-At Large) off the D.C. Council by way of a Bowser-funded surrogate, political neophyte Dionne Reeder, landed with a thud. Bowser threw boatloads of money, volunteers and personal time behind the Reeder challenge.
Silverman trounced Reeder across the city, losing to her only in Wards 7 and 8 in the eastern portions of the city. Bowser’s coattails were so short that she couldn’t even pull Reeder across the finish line in Ward 4 where Bowser, a former Ward 4 council member, has home field advantage.
Silverman strolled into Bowser territory and walked away with 12,130 votes to Reeder’s 6,899.
Bowser won her virtually unchallenged reelection bid. But the election also strongly suggests that in a citywide political brawl, Bowser has less of a bite.
And she started the fight.
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