Editorial: Step Down, Michael Brown

Photo by RJSmith
A campaign sign for Michael D. Brown could mislead voters to think popular Michael A. Brown is running for re-election.
A campaign sign for Michael D. Brown could mislead voters to think popular Michael A. Brown is running for re-election.
This suggestion, no, let’s call it a plea, is addressed to Shadow Senator Michael Brown, the At-large candidate for the D.C. Council:

Drop out of the race. 
We make this plea because, as we all know, most of the votes you are getting are based on the misimpression that you are the Michael A. Brown, the present At-large Councilmember with very high name recognition.  Because of his high name recognition, you, Michael D. Brown, could be elected to the Council under what are essentially false pretenses – without the voters
having a chance to examine your credentials and your platform.

According to a Washington Post poll and a must-read interview by Post reporter Mike DeBonis, you are benefiting from the name "confusion" to the tune of a 12-percentage-point lead over incumbent and once-assumed front runner Phil Mendelson.

We're using middle initials here, but voters won't have that benefit, because you chose to use the ambiguous "Michael Brown" on the ballot.
You are not playing fair with the voters.  You have not mounted a serious campaign in the At-large race.  You entered to "make D.C. statehood a focus for the council," you said.  Yet, you have not appeared at forums, you have not raised money, you have not rallied statehood supporters.  Even your posters highlight “Democrat,” and barely mention “statehood.”

Ironically, this is the sort of maneuver, resulting in who knows how many erroneous votes, that makes Washington, D.C. a perennial butt of jokes and an easy target for disrespect in our nation. Rush Limbaugh, are you ready? Because of Michael D. Brown, even statehood could become a punchline in late-night comedy routines.
The District's voters should not be subjected to this damaging sleight of hand. Michael D. Brown, you should call Phil Mendelson and say: “I will drop out and endorse you if it’s done at a press conference with you and your colleagues who have endorsed you -- including D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray and Councilmember Michael A. Brown -- and you make a renewed commitment to D.C. statehood.”
This press conference will do two things: 1) It will get the real attention and commitment to statehood you say you want, and 2) It will make you an honest politician with the real political identity to hold these Councilmembers to their promise.

The Georgetown Dish has endorsed Phil Mendelson due to his strong record on good government and representing the full spectrum of D.C.'s neighborhoods and community concerns. But, with due respect, Mendelson is beside the point in this case.

This is about basic integrity, the District's reputation, and the rights due all our citizens, up to and including statehood. For the good of all of us, step down, Michael D. Brown.


0 Comments For This Article


that has got to be the funniest editorial i have ever read. all three candidates are horrible.


It's fine if you like Phil Mendelson, and you can editorialize as you wish, it is simply not true, factual, or fair to say that Michael D Brown has not appeared at any campaign forums. He has appeared at all of them, including the televised one held by NewsChannel 8 and others. It's entirely possible that Phil Mendelson's low poll numbers are due to the terrible editorial from the Washington Post and not your suggestion that DC Voters are too stupid to know who they are actually voting for. As for the fact that his poster's have the word Democrat on them, that is actually a legitimate means of showing he is not the Non-Democratic incumbent on the Council who you seem to think he is trying to impersonate.


The 1:45 PM commenter is essentially correct that Michael "D" appeared at some of the candidate forums. He probably did not appear at "all" of them, as no candidate likely attended every single one of those redundant events. But the commenter is entirely WRONG in this supposition:

"It's entirely possible that Phil Mendelson's low poll numbers are due to the terrible editorial from the Washington Post ...."

The Post editorial came out well AFTER the poll results were announced, IIRC at least a full week after the poll was published, and thus well after the polling was actually conducted. The "terrible editorial" did not exist at the time the Post did its polling. The 12-point margin favoring Michael "D" is obviously the result of his stealth exploitation of identity confusion.


Commenter at 1:45 PM yesterday was essentially correct that Michael "D" attended candidate forums, although it's unlikely he attended "all of them." Which of any of the candidates other than Vince Gray actually attended "all" of the forums he or she was invited to?

That commenter is entirely wrong, however, to say that Mendelson's poll numbers "are due to the terrible editorial from the Washington Post." The editorial was published well after the poll results were published, and certainly at least a full week after the polling was actually conducted by WaPo. Michael "D" gained an unfair advantage in the poll, without doubt, because WaPo never identified him as NOT the incumbent Michael "A" when it did its poll. WaPo never published the actual text of its question, IIRC. WaPo is helping Michael "D" in his stealth campaign to steal the election using identity confusion.