Beatty Makes the Case for Her Candidacy
D.C. Council at-large candidate Mary Brooks Beatty supports economic development east of the Anacostia River and doesn't characterize herself as a "typical Republican."
Beatty, a former Ward 6 advisory neighborhood commissioner, won the Republican Party nomination for one of the two at-large seats on the D.C. Council on April 3. Beatty said that the residents in eastern Washington, not city officials and political leaders, should decide what type of commercial activity takes place in that area.
"I think the most important aspect of development is to make sure that neighborhoods are empowered," she said. "That means that the residents of Ward 7 and 8 have the largest impact on new development."
"While the city planners may propose ideas, it is important that Advisory Neighborhood Commissions, residents and community organizations are actively engaged in how the development is molded to the needs of the community."
Beatty, 61, said that affordable housing and "creating better and more job training facilities" should be priorities in Wards 7 and 8 "in order to keep current residents in the area." She said that the entire city should be "small-business friendly by improving the services of the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs."
"I have a lot of direct experience in helping small business along H Street," Beatty said. "Together with others, I helped create 55 new businesses and about 200 jobs along H Street, and want to do the same in Wards 7 and 8."
George Mason University political scientist Michael Fauntroy knows of Beatty but said she faces tough odds winning one of the seats in the Nov. 6 general election.
"She is a Republican in a city where the ratio is 9-to-1 Democrats," said Fauntroy, 45.
Beatty said she should be compared to another well-liked D.C. Republican: former D.C. Council member Carol Schwartz.
"I consider Carol to be independent and not defined by a label," she said. "She was known as Carol, not as 'the Republican.' She knew every neighborhood and was a friend to people all across the city."
Beatty said that she "actually has been well received in Wards 7 and 8."
"In fact, people talk to me usually without even asking my party affiliation," she said. "So, I feel that most people accept me for who I am, not my party."
The Endorsements are Announced
Endorsements of candidates seeking offices in the District of Columbia have been announced, bringing with them an array of resources and much-needed money for political campaigns.
The D.C. Tenant Advocacy Coalition [TENAC], on Oct. 24, endorsed incumbents D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, Interim D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and D.C. Council members Jack Evans [D-Ward 2], Muriel Bowser [D-Ward 4], Yvette Alexander [D-Ward 7], Marion Barry [D-Ward 8] and Vincent Orange [D-At Large]. A.J. Cooper, an independent running for one of the two at-large positions on the D.C. Council, got the nod for the non-Democratic spot.
Fifty-five percent of District residents are tenants and issues such as rent control and neighborhood development are also central in political campaigns.
The Metro Washington AFL-CIO's Committee on Political Education, on Oct. 23, endorsed Norton, Mendelson, Evans, Bowser, Alexander, Barry, Orange and D.C. Council member Michael Brown [I-At Large]. Labor unions have traditionally played a major role in the election of candidates in D.C. political races because the city is so heavily Democratic.
The Washington Teachers' Union released its endorsements for the D.C. State Board of Education on Thursday, Oct. 25. It supports Marvin Tucker for the at-large position and Jack Jacobson for Ward 2, Kamilla Anderson for Ward 4, Villareal Johnson for Ward 7 and Trayon White for Ward 8.
"WTU is proud to endorse such outstanding candidates in the State Board of Education race," said Washington Teachers' Union president Nathan Saunders, 47. "These candidates have the vision, energy and commitment to improve student outcomes by collaborating with local communities, parents and students to improve the quality of public education in the District."