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For DC Council at-large: Peter Shapiro

The DC Democratic primary for at-large councilmember will finally end a 17-month game of musical chairs between Sekou Biddle and Vincent Orange. When the tune stops on April 3, neither should take the seat. We endorse Peter Shapiro because we believe he is the best candidate.

Image from Peter Shapiro.

While the Washington Post and Washington City Paper were both far too quick to dismiss Shapiro's work in Prince George's County, he knows firsthand how to work for and with a diverse, and often vulnerable, constituency, and he can accomplish this without the pandering the current councilmember is known for.

After serving for two years on the Town Council in Brentwood, Maryland, constituents elected Shapiro to the Prince George's County Council from 1998 to 2004, and he served as council chair for two years. He also sat on the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board, where he was chair in 2003.

Shapiro worked with community stakeholders to bring a grassroots vision to fruition along Route 1, which has culminated in the Gateway Arts District. Despite the economic downturn, revitalization continues along the corridor, stopping dead in its tracks at the District's doorstep on Eastern Avenue.

Shapiro is ready and committed to bridge the gaps along DC's gateway corridors, starting with Georgia Avenue, and his record more than suggests that he is fully capable of doing so. Additionally, his involvement on local boards, including the Latin American Youth Center, the Nonprofit Roundtable of Greater Washington, and the Washington Area Housing Partnership, exemplifies his longstanding commitment to community development.

As executive director of the College Park City-University Partnership, Shapiro was a constructive voice in critical town-gown disputes, where he was able to win support from both sides. The Prince George's County Council elects their chair, and their choice of Shapiro strongly demonstrates his ability to work collegially with other councilmembers to work toward common goals. This skill is missing in many members of the current DC Council.

The District is a part of a diverse metropolitan region. Its issues affect communities hyper-locally and also cut across jurisdictional lines. A councilmember with a proven ability to think and work regionally will only benefit District residents in the long-term.

Incumbent Vincent Orange's record, particularly with regard to economic development, stands in stark, disappointing contrast to Shapiro's. Orange has long viewed the city's urbanity as something holding us back. He has exploited it, particularly in Ward 5, by touting a brand of economic development best defined by poorly-designed big-box stores and clear-cutting, greenfield development. Meanwhile, revitalization and small business development along Rhode Island Avenue, New York Avenue, and Bladensburg Road has floundered.

At the recent candidate forum, Orange repeatedly uttered Tommy Wells' catchphrase "livable, walkable." If he truly has come to believe in strengthening urban spaces as a top priority, he has not demonstrated that with more than words, at least not yet. Whether he wins re-election or remains in public life in other ways, he will have opportunities to actually walk the walkable walk, and hope he will avail himself of these.

Biddle's experience with education is impressive, but in both the past and current campaigns he has not been able to articulate a clear vision for how having him on the council will change education for the better. Nor has he made a compelling argument for electing him in other ways beyond simply not being Vincent Orange.

We do hope Biddle will continue to advocate around education policy, where DC's discourse still focuses too much on "horse race" issues such as how education news affects a mayor's political fortunes rather than what will best help DC's kids succeed.

Meanwhile, your vote on April 3 ought not to turn on vote-splitting game theory. Instead, vote for the best candidate for the job. That candidate is Peter Shapiro.

This is the official endorsement of Greater Greater Washington, written by one or more contributors. Active contributors and editors voted on endorsements, and any endorsement reflects a strong majority or greater in favor of endorsing the candidate.


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This would be a great time to have instant runoff voting (or some system of ranked-choice voting)!

by Gavin on Mar 26, 2012 12:33 pm • linkreport

GGW goes with Shapiro, Post and CityPaper endorse Biddle, Vincent Orange wins the seat.

What is it going to take to get some progressive organization in this city?

by Campy on Mar 26, 2012 12:34 pm • linkreport

I hate voting against GGW, but I'm going with Sekou Biddle. I don't see how Shapiro has articulated any more of a vision than Sekou has. Biddle's education background is the tie breaker for me. (And, to be honest, I don't love that Shapiro's resume is all outside of DC.)

by DrewCourt on Mar 26, 2012 12:42 pm • linkreport

I don't vote in DC, so discount my views as you like, but Shapiro's the real deal -- his elected experience, regional perspective, collegiality all make him someone who's going to be effective from day one. I had the chance to observe his work in the County from a perch at the State, and Peter made good things happen. The fact of past effectiveness as an elected has to influence your assessment of future prospects.

by jnb on Mar 26, 2012 12:58 pm • linkreport

Meanwhile, your vote on April 3 ought not to turn on vote-splitting game theory. Instead, vote for the best candidate for the job.

Why? Are you planning on providing a separate post on this subject?

by Falls Church on Mar 26, 2012 1:05 pm • linkreport

I have a lot of respect for Peter and I agree with GGW that he's the best person for the job. I have a hard time figuring out why some people point to his experience in PG County as a negative - is he really to be penalized for embracing the community around his alma mater (UMD, go Terps!) and running for public office in a jurisdiction which is 0 miles away from DC? By all accounts he was well-respected in PG, and I'm convinced his previous experience will only make him an even more effective council member in DC.

by dc_chica on Mar 26, 2012 1:10 pm • linkreport

Shapiro was getting my vote regardless of this endorsement, but hopefully the publicity will spur others to do the same

by HJenkins on Mar 26, 2012 1:12 pm • linkreport

Wow, it's been an hour since the first comment, and the approval voting bots haven't arrived yet.

Campy, in what sense would the Washington Post be part of any progressive organization?

by Keith Ivey on Mar 26, 2012 1:36 pm • linkreport

Ah, I see now why the first comment hasn't attracted the swarm I expected. A certain phrase seems to have been added to the spam filter.

by Keith Ivey on Mar 26, 2012 1:37 pm • linkreport

I couldn't agree more with Campy. Two candidates split the "not Orange" vote, and he wins again. I'm sure Mr. Shapiro would be a good CM, but with an at-large race like this, you have to go with the candidate who has the most name recognition. Biddle's the only one with a shot.

by Adam L on Mar 26, 2012 1:41 pm • linkreport

I don't see why work in another city/state means that same work ethic (or not) can't be translated to this seat. Whether it will is a different story.

IMO, being a carpetbagger started the initial cancellation process. But coupled with Shapiro's own position, readying himself to fight w/the same colleagues he refers to as petty and corrupt pretty much (despite this endorsement) casts him as an who is willing (and able) to "loan" himself 50k just to make a name for himself here in DC. We just had enough of that w/Michelle "the fighter" Rhee and what do we have to show for it? Just wasn't worth it.

I'm not a Biddle fan but would most definitely choose him over Shapiro any day. At least he has some roots here.

by HogWash on Mar 26, 2012 1:42 pm • linkreport

Oh, and I'm voting Orange!!!

by HogWash on Mar 26, 2012 1:43 pm • linkreport

Like any DC primary election, it is about getting YOUR voters to the polls. How do you think Marion has been elected so many times? His voters are reliable and they get to the polls...or rather the are gotten to the polls.

While I would like to Sekou take all depends on who's voters show up in all wards. Sadly, VO will probably get this one

by Some Ideas on Mar 26, 2012 1:46 pm • linkreport

Keith: It wasn't the spam filter, but as the notation above the comment form explains, the elections team decided to set all comments on endorsement posts to be pre-moderated and to set a higher bar for them to avoid some of the nastiness that often surrounds endorsement posts.

As you can see we've approved comments by people saying they're voting for 3 different candidates here, but not comments that are rude and obnoxious regardless of for whom.

The voting system spam folks haven't tried to submit things yet, but those will probably not be approved for these endorsement posts under the higher standard.

by David Alpert on Mar 26, 2012 1:48 pm • linkreport

HogWash: Peter Shapiro was born in the District of Columbia. If you require deeper "roots" than that, I'm afraid that you cannot be helped.

In addition, your comparison to Michelle Rhee doesn't make any sense. She never ran for office, so your comparison lacks any ground to make a logical debate. This isn't just contrarian, it's illogical.

by Geoffrey Hatchard on Mar 26, 2012 1:52 pm • linkreport

First things first: if Shapiro is a "carpetbagger" because he lived in PG County (home of a lot of displaced DC natives, last time I checked), even though he was born and raised in the District (a title of dubious distinction that shouldn't make any difference in a candidate's fitness to serve in DC's government), it's simple to tag quite a few current Councilmembers as "carpetbaggers" simply because they spent some of their life outside of DC (or, worse yet, were born somewhere else [gasp!]).

That said, I actually consider it a benefit that Shapiro has governmental experience outside the DC political sphere. The Council, more than ever, needs new ideas and new blood, as well as somebody who doesn't have to learn political maneuvering as he goes. And that's where Shapiro has a huge advantage, to my eye: his experience in PG County gives him the needed experience to hit the ground running, while his experience outside of the polluted DC political fishbowl provides new perspectives on how to move DC forward.

While I respect Biddle, I find that his campaign has a hard time finding a stand on any position other than education. Furthermore, when asked repeatedly about sources of campaign funding in the special election, he couldn't produce data that any candidate worth his salt would be able to produce in a heartbeat. During his short tenure as At-Large Councilman, he was OK, but also worked hard to not ruffle any feathers, rather than to define where he stood on important DC issues. His campaign is an example of mealy-mouthed platitudes (on everything except education) that try to speak to all without actually saying anything at all.

And as for Orange? I've always found his politics divisive and out-of-touch with making DC a better place to live for all of its residents. Sure, he's a consummate campaigner, but what did it bring to Ward 5? Decimation of local retail blocks for the allure of big-box, suburban-style retail that contributes far less to the District than promised.

by randomduck on Mar 26, 2012 2:09 pm • linkreport

Very worried that the Biddle/Shapiro will just split the smart money vote, and all the voters who vote for Orange solely because they don't see any reason not too will tip this election in his favor.

Just remember people, you get who you vote for! When we have to deal with this guy for the next 4 years, you have only yourself to blame!

by Kyle W on Mar 26, 2012 2:19 pm • linkreport

I'm with HogWash: any candidate who thinks corruption on the the Council (or anywhere else for that matter) is a problem is automatically disqualified from office in my opinion.

Plus "carpetbaggers" are the real problem in this town. The entrenched kleptocracy that's been saddling DC with dysfunction for decades are people Harry Thomas Junior--a local boy who went to Wilson. Go Tigers!

by oboe on Mar 26, 2012 2:30 pm • linkreport

I too am concerned about splitting the "not Orange" vote. Since Mr. Biddle has won both the CP and WP endorsements, I believe he will be the more viable candidate in this election. I think Peter Shapiro is a wonderful person and potential public servant for the District, but he has a better chance running against Phil Mendelson in two years, when he can develop more current community ties across the city.

In the mean time, I am not sure GGW does this any service as it does nothing more than pave the way for a full term for Vince Orange (until he decides to run for Mayor.

by William on Mar 26, 2012 2:46 pm • linkreport

I like Shapiro and I like his "outsider" experience (which, no, doesn't make him a "carpetbagger"). Being an "outsider" is a canard too often thrown about in politics, but I think this is the right application of the trope; it's not that he's some maverick wildman in a legislature, but that he has had success in other relevant political environments and is interested in trying to extend some of those successes into DC. That's the kind of outside influence I like to see coming into the district.

HogWash: does the still-alleged $100k in funny money going from Thompson to Orange give you less pause than the notion that Shapiro doesn't live in DC right now? I feel like you have your candidates crossed if you're looking for someone who will play well with others and truly act with the best interests of his constituents in mind.

by worthing on Mar 26, 2012 2:47 pm • linkreport

Hmmm HogWash, let's see, Sekou Biddle and Peter Shapiro both born in DC, Vincent (Mitt Romney) Orange not born in DC. I'm personally voting for Biddle, but could care less where he came from. I remember two years ago when Orange ran against Kwame Brown, I was leaning toward Orange at that point. I remember Orange supporting Michelle Rhee, courting the NW vote and begging WaPo for an endorsement. Then, last year, Orange changed tactics, decided he was a WTU supporter and played race politics east of the river. Orange will do whatever it takes to win and will change his position based on what it would take to get votes.

by Ward(6)Cleaver on Mar 26, 2012 2:51 pm • linkreport

I expect the results to be:

Orange 40% (WINNER)
Biddle 35%
Shapiro 25%

If Biddle or Shapiro were to drop out and endorse the other:
Orange 45%
Not Orange 55% (WINNER)

by Ward 1 Guy on Mar 26, 2012 2:53 pm • linkreport

@GH, my apologies to Shapiro. I checked the web and didn't make the "dc native" connection. Guess he's the Mitt Romney of the race.

Michelle Rhee campaigned "against" dc schools/teachers. Shapiro is campaigning "against" the council. Both used their "anti" position in hopes of furthering their own agendas. Rhee's performance and the mayor's ousting demonstrated the danger in politicizing education. She was as dangerous as any politician could be. Shapiro is a pol and seems to have the same attitude and the last we thing we need is more divisive and nastiness on the council.

@Random, I agree that the council needs new blood but remain unconvinced that Shapiro is the man for the job. A grand stander? Likely so. But the best candidate? Not by a long shot.

Vote Orange 2012.

by HogWash on Mar 26, 2012 2:54 pm • linkreport

I'm with HogWash: any candidate who thinks corruption on the the Council (or anywhere else for that matter) is a problem is automatically disqualified from office in my opinion.

No, you're actually "with" yourself on this. I am very capable of speaking for myself without you serving as my spokesman. Fortunately we're on separate sides of the issue since I don't share your belief about what automatically disqualifies someone from office. I would call your smear exactly what it is but it likely wouldn't make the cut.

by HogWash on Mar 26, 2012 3:00 pm • linkreport

does the still-alleged $100k in funny money going from Thompson to Orange give you less pause than the notion that Shapiro doesn't live in DC right now?

Well considering that he's donated to candidates around the country in addition to the two prior Mayors and council chair and Orange's funds were certified by OCF, no it doesn't give me that much pause. It does make me question why OCF isn't more effective and why has this been going on for as long as it has. And that's not a good thing.

I feel like you have your candidates crossed if you're looking for someone who will play well with others and truly act with the best interests of his constituents in mind.

WRT this, I can't cite any instances where Orange hasn't played well or acted outside of his constituents interests. However, I am open to receiving more information from those who know.

@W6, at what point did Orange go from being a "rhee supporter" to her detractor? I guess I'm trying to understand how you drew such a straight line from support Rhee/court NW/Post vote to WTU/racial politics support EOTR?

by HogWash on Mar 26, 2012 3:27 pm • linkreport

I wrote to both progressives running and encouraged them to play "rock paper scissors" for it, and the loser would endorse the other. Think of the publicity and good will! And this would benefit the people of DC.

Instead, they'll probably split about 60% of the vote and Orange will win with 40%. I wonder if one of them is getting paid by Orange to stay in the race? Only Orange benefits from this scenario. The rest of us lose.

by Tom A. on Mar 26, 2012 3:28 pm • linkreport

Meanwhile, your vote on April 3 ought not to turn on vote-splitting game theory. Instead, vote for the best candidate for the job.

If Shapiro were far superior to Biddle, maybe I could go along with voting for someone who almost certainly will, if even moderately successful, put Mr. Orange in office. Can't do it this time. It's not like writing in your neighbor in the Delegate race to let Norton know not everyone loves her.

I can see where some people might view some aspects of Shapiro marginally more attractive than Biddle, but not enough to justify keeping Orange and the band of money-grubbing thieves that support him in office for another four years.

It was close for me until I learned that Shapiro's wife is the treasurer on his campaign and has worked as a consultant for all the big developers in town for years. She is tapping right into that same pay-to-play crowd that has run this place. Biddle really is our only hope. This is no time for a protest vote.

by Hila on Mar 26, 2012 4:05 pm • linkreport

"carpetbagger" was originally a term of abuse used by racist white southerners against white northerners who moved south during Reconstruction. Its use here is ironic, to say the least.

by AWalkerInTheCity on Mar 26, 2012 4:19 pm • linkreport

Hogwash, I highly doubt more than 1-2% of the readership of GGW would ever vote for Orange. I remember him from the Ward 6 Mayoral debate six years ago. He's anti-gay-marriage, for allowing church congregants to ignore parking laws (and double park surrounding residents with impunity), and more of the same nonsense we're currently getting from Gray.

Personally, I support Shapiro, but I'd take Biddle to keep Orange out of the seat. Why don't we have preferential balloting (aka IRV)?

by RM-S on Mar 26, 2012 5:15 pm • linkreport

This is so frustrating. Bryan Weaver wrote a GGW piece last June on what progressives need to do to win a city wide race in this election cycle. To a T this exactly what Biddle has tried to do .... in his redux run. But we hate him so much from his last run --- being the insider Democrat, being a childhood friend of Kwame, challenging Weaver and Patterson's signatures --- that we are going to vote for a candidate who has absolutely activism in DC. So we are going to reelect VO. Early on Shapiro met with all kinds of progressives across the city (Mara, Weaver, Wells) and promised that he would not be the spoiler in this race, and if the numbers were not there he would withdraw and back Biddle to defeat Orange. It is obvious that Shapiro will not win, and honestly it would be hard for Biddle to win in a one on one vs VO --- but nobody except VO can win in a 4 way race. Shapiro could win great support for a future run from the middle if he stepped down to back Biddle now. But he won't because he is running for a future special election if VO is forced to step down. It's lame, but it is what it is - we get the council we deserve for not knocking off the mortally wounded, flip-flopping, corrupt VO because of some BS progressive code.

Based on Shapiro's lack of keeping his word to make sure VO is not the winner in April. I will never back him for any office in the future.

by Ward 5 Progressive on Mar 26, 2012 7:51 pm • linkreport

I think that there may be honest disagreement about whether Shapiro's cause is hopeless; he may not have withdrawn based on a (potentially misguided) belief that he's in the running.

These aren't national races, there isn't good polling on this question. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt, as he's never (to my knowledge) shown himself to be unprincipled.

In the end, unless I (and everyone I know, Shapiro supporters all) hear something that suggests this race is more open than we think it is, we (and I imagine many if not most Shapiro supporters) will fall in line behind Biddle, to keep Orange off that seat.

Is there any sign that the Gray coalition is fracturing, after so many months of scandals and disappointments?

by RM-S on Mar 26, 2012 8:48 pm • linkreport

I am concerned about the holes in how Mr. Shapiro explains what he has been doing for the last eight years.

He left the PGC Council half-way into his second term because he got an offer he couldn't refuse from the University of Maryland, somehow left that position at a time and for a reason that have not been made known, moved into the city three years ago, apparently pottered around in worthy nonprofits but did not test his meddle in community politics, and then decided he was worthy for city-wide office. He may not be hiding something, but he sure is making it look as though he might be.

I like his idea about publicly funded elections, but I see no reason to believe that he will always be looking for the main chance elsewhere.

I have no such doubts about the equally thoughtful Sekou Bidle.

by Worried about Opportunism on Mar 26, 2012 8:59 pm • linkreport

Sekou Biddle has consistently impressed me with his deliberative thoughtfulness and progressive core values. He examines what is, imagines what could be, and sets out to produce results.

I cherish new blood -- and granted, Shapiro certainly isn't brand new to the District. If Sekou hadn't entered the race, Shapiro far and away would have been a terrific choice over Orange. But Shapiro's DC community and political credentials simply pale in comparison to Sekou's.

Importantly, Sekou is skilled as a bridge builder between different constituencies -- while still retaining a core constitution of progressive values for social justice. The benefit of that in producing real change can be enormous -- something I think is being lost sight of. It's about results in public policy (and beyond). Sekou is uniquely skilled at being able produce consensus that usually seems intractably elusive.

I truly believe Shapiro doesn't belong in *this race -- something I'm never quick to say. I think Sekou has run a good race in this election -- better than the one he ran one year ago, when I was employed on his campaign. I know Sekou sometimes doesn't interject with a certain aggressiveness that might be desired, but I have confidence in him, and think he deserves election to the Council. I think all DC residents -- and certainly including progressives -- deserve to have Sekou on the Council. Replacing Vincent Orange is just too important. He is a bad stain. I just don't see a realistic way to get rid of that stain without supporting Sekou.

After living in DC for 11 of the past 13 years, I just recently moved to Arlington. I was disappointed that I wouldn't be able to vote for Sekou, but I'm enthusiastic and resolute in supporting him.

by Dennis Jaffe on Mar 26, 2012 9:39 pm • linkreport

I am a Shapiro supporter, and I did work on Bryan Weaver's campaign last year that opposed Biddle. Last year, before Shapiro announced, I was hopeful that Biddle could reboot and really be a strong force for progressives in D.C. Unfortunately, that just never seemed to happen.

I'm very puzzled by Biddle. He had so many resources heading into 4/26, but he just didn't seem to connect with people, or energize. I don't know why, maybe it's just he tried to be all things to all people and that ended up being just flat. It allowed him to be defined by the company he kept rather than any message he might have.

I saw the same thing this time around. If I had to choose one word to describe Biddle's campaigns, I'd probably go with "meh."

When it came down to "who should stay in the race," it became a lot more complicated than simply "Peter should drop out." Peter still has more resources and I would say a better organization than Biddle. While some of his money was in the form of a loan from himself, as election day nears it still means more money -- a gap that Biddle was unable to close.

How this all plays out, I don't know. But I do know that Peter is passionate about what he believes in, and he also has a record of getting things done. And we really do need people who can get things done, especially now. Peter has the right experience for what our city needs, and that is why I am supporting him and I would ask that people give him a fair shake and consider him to be just as viable as an option as Biddle.

by Dave Stroup on Mar 26, 2012 10:39 pm • linkreport

@Dave Stroup

$50,000 is more than "some" of the money Peter Shapiro has loaned himself that you are considering as "more resources". Part of a viability test in an election is support as reflected by donations by people who are actually going to be voting for a candidate. Your statement undercuts the test for Shapiro's viability in this race.

I agree that he would make a good council member, but on this cycle, his remaining in the race clears the way for Orange. As a "good progressive", I am not sure how or why you think that is a good result.

by William on Mar 27, 2012 7:32 am • linkreport

Dave Stroup - "I would ask that people give him a fair shake and consider him to be just as viable as an option as Biddle."

That is an interesting way to phrase that. I think that most who would be comfortable voting for Biddle would also consider Shapiro a viable option.
For me, it's just a case of, to paraphrase Voltaire, letting the better be the enemy of the good.

by Thaps on Mar 27, 2012 7:53 am • linkreport

@ Campy on Mar 26, 2012 12:34 pm

In some small remote parts of the country, the prominent local democratic organization represents progressives and liberals, in this town at the city leadership level, the dems are a part of the problem of corruption routinely "vetting" and supporting candidates that have no business in office.

by Already voted on Mar 27, 2012 8:51 am • linkreport

This would be a great time to have instant runoff voting (or some system of ranked-choice voting)!

Well, that's not going to happen, so the only alternative is for aspiring politicians to put their egos aside if they want to defeat another officeholder they want to get rid of.

by Tyro on Mar 27, 2012 8:57 am • linkreport

Then, last year, Orange changed tactics, decided he was a WTU supporter and played race politics east of the river.

I think this is a bit unfair to VO; as he himself explained it, he walks and talks like everyone in every ward of the city. If Mitt Romney were a lobbyist for a local utility, he'd be Vince Orange.

by oboe on Mar 27, 2012 8:58 am • linkreport

1. Correcting my post above:

"...I see no reason to believe that [Shapiro] will not always be looking for the main chance elsewhere."

2. @Dave Stroup

To the best of my knowledge, the first call for anyone to drop out of the race came from a posting on GGW suggesting that Biddle should do so. I do not know whether that post was authorized by Mr. Shapiro, but I found it unseemly on two counts.

First, it was suggesting that a relatively seasoned and unsullied candidate should yield to someone who had just materialized in DC and in DC politics relatively recently and without a track record among our electorate.

Second, the primary reason cited was the size relative size of the campaign war chests: Mr. Shapiro had the most money, so Mr. Biddle should drop out. Especially in DC right now, that is not to my mind defensible reasoning.

by Worried about Opportunism on Mar 27, 2012 10:56 am • linkreport

"First, it was suggesting that a relatively seasoned and unsullied candidate should yield to someone who had just materialized in DC and in DC politics relatively recently and without a track record among our electorate."

If by seasoned you mean an incumbent who came in third, behind a Republican, then perhaps you have a point.

If by unsullied you mean someone who put Kwame Brown's father on his payroll until he had to fire him, and someone who got his appointment by having Kwame Brown, Harry Thomas, Jr. and Marion Barry whip votes for him, then perhaps you have a point.

"Second, the primary reason cited was the size relative size of the campaign war chests: Mr. Shapiro had the most money, so Mr. Biddle should drop out. Especially in DC right now, that is not to my mind defensible reasoning."

If it was a level playing field, where no one was facing a candidate with over $100,000 I would tend to agree with you. However, until Initiative 70 is law and we see real campaign finance reform, no one is going to win an election here on good feelings or passion alone. Two things, which I must say, Biddle is lacking.

by Dave Stroup on Mar 27, 2012 11:52 am • linkreport

Well, according to, Orange just beat Biddle by less than 1,000 votes, while Shapiro took over 5,000 votes. This is not "vote-splitting game theory" - it is how actual elections work. Shapiro has played the role of spoiler, which was utterly predictable and is now borne out by the results. I hope GGW takes stock of this election and thinks twice about its endorsements in the future - they should be redesigned to effect real political change instead of unwittingly fracturing the progressive vote.

by Jeb on Apr 4, 2012 6:29 am • linkreport

Thanks a lot, GGW, another Orange term. That's really going to help the city. Sometimes you need to think real world. Biddle may not be perfect, but Shapiro was not going to win this. Biddle is a heck of a lot better than Orange. People think "horse race" because that's what actually happens.

by Andrew on Apr 4, 2012 8:54 am • linkreport

While I doubt GGW's endorsement caused Orange to win, people who voted for Shapiro or Holden and preferred Biddle to Orange definitely did not vote in their own best interest.

by David C on Apr 4, 2012 10:29 am • linkreport

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