Jim Graham. When something happens Ward 1, Graham is there. Some call his quickness in front of the camera, "Grahamstanding," but I believe that he is out front-and-center because he keeps his ear close to the ground. He's strong on quality-of-life issues and crime in a very diverse ward. Neighborhoods in his ward are undergoing unprecedented development, but he has not lost sight of issues such as affordable housing. He's survived his chief-of-staff's arrest for bribery -- if he was implicated, it would have come out by now. Graham makes occasional mistakes, such as his fight against the jumbo slice, but overall this is a Councilmember Ward 1 is fortunate to have. Voters should choose Graham over his challengers.
Mary Cheh. Cheh is unopposed in her bid for a second term and that's not without reason. My former law professor has been a strong voice on the Council, standing as a needed balance in separating law from politics that spout from D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles. Cheh has her issues -- election reform, the environment, animal protection, healthy food in schools -- some may find her pet issues too much to chew. But she has also tried to address issues ranging from nuisance properties to noise control. While she is unopposed, Ward 3 residents should check the box (or push touchscreen) for Cheh.
Ward 5 - Not Harry Thomas. Harry Thomas brags about his record of legislative accomplishment. I have yet to see it. I can't place my finger on anything positive from him. I can point to some of the damage. Giving out earmarks to favored organizations even after the Council declared them no more. Attacking a neighborhood newsletter for criticizing him. He opposed strong anti-gang measures, even as he represents war-torn Trinidad. He and his staff have been absent in numerous meetings to plan future libraries and parks in my neighborhood, despite serving as chair of the Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation. In that position, he presided over the embarrassing and offensive nomination hearing of Ximena Hartsock to lead the Department of Parks and Recreation, a hearing at which her qualifications were questioned on account of her citizenship (she's Chilean). His car even got booted for all his unpaid parking tickets. The Washington Post called Thomas "a major disappointment." Ward 5 residents have several better choices - Kenyan McDuffie, Delano Hunter, and Tracey D. Turner. The Post endorsed Hunter, a community organizer with Brookland Manor, who it called "an engaging newcomer who is running a grass-roots campaign."
Tommy Wells. Tommy Wells has his slogan -- a livable, walkable community. Some downplay his focus on smart transit, bike lanes, streetcars, noise control, park improvements, and pedestrian safety -- but Wells is building the infrastructure that makes the District an even better place to live, work, and play everyday. A former social worker, Wells' is closely tracking and seeking solutions to address our juvenile crime problem. The down-to-earth Councilmember, who can be seen riding to work and meetings on his bike, is responsive to his constituents in a ward that spans all four quadrants of the city. He faces opposition as he seeks a second term. Support Wells.