Dec 6, 2021 - Politics

Scoop: D.C. attorney general backs Zachary Parker for Ward 5

Zachary Parker and Karl Racine having a conversation, taken from a campaign video.
Screenshot of Zachary Parker (left) campaign video on YouTube

D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine endorsed in the Ward 5 D.C. Council race on Monday, backing the president of the State Board of Education, Zachary Parker.

Why it matters: Racine's endorsement is highly coveted, as several of his picks have gone on to win seats on the D.C. Council.

What they're saying: "There's only one candidate who is prepared, who is earnest, chock full of integrity and honor, and understands the most important issues that confront the District of Columbia," Racine says in a campaign ad released Monday morning by the Parker campaign. "Zach Parker is a leader."

  • In a statement, Parker said he was honored to receive the endorsement and praised Racine as a "resolute statesman."

State of play: The race is the most competitive ward-level contest in the June 2022 Democratic primary. The incumbent, Kenyan McDuffie, declined another term in order to run for attorney general, after Racine ruled out a campaign this cycle.

  • Candidates for Ward 5 include former council members Vincent Orange and Harry Thomas Jr.
  • In addition, former D.C. government official Faith Gibson Hubbard and advisory neighborhood commissioner and Ward 5 Democrats chair Gordon Fletcher are running.
  • Candidates debated last month, aiming to break out in a crowded field to represent the city's second-fastest-growing ward.

Parker has advocated for a more independent Education Board to shape schools policy.

  • To address crime, he has said he supports more investments in violence interruption efforts and social programs.

Racine endorsed four sitting council members in their first wins: Trayon White (Ward 8), Robert White (At-large), Janeese Lewis George (Ward 4), and Brooke Pinto (Ward 2).

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