Challenger David Grosso (I) beat out incumbent Michael Brown for the at-large D.C. Council seat reserved for non-Democrats
For the first time in nearly 15 years, a D.C. council incumbent has lost in a general election. Independent David Grosso defeated incumbent Independent Michael Brown for the second at-large seat reserved the non-Democrats.
Grosso, a former council staffer and relative newcomer to the world of D.C. politics, defeated the well-known Brown by more than five points. Brown conceded to Grosso, it appeared, via Twitter.
Brown, the son of the late U.S. Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown, was criticized during the race for mismanaging his personal and campaign finances. Brown announced earlier this year that more than $100,000 was stolen from his campaign account. Authorities are still investigating the incident.
Grosso, meanwhile, showed surprising fundraising prowess during the race. During the final stretch — when Brown had practically no money left because of the alleged embezzlement — the Grosso campaign spent heavily on advertising.
Grosso defeated Brown by more than 18,000 votes, according to the Board of Elections and Ethics.
All of the other incumbent council members up for reelection cruised to victory. Chairman Phil Mendelson (D) was reelected. Vincent Orange (D) retained his at-large council seat, and Marion Barry (D-Ward 8), Muriel Bowser (D-Ward 4), Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7) and Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) will return to the council.
Three charter amendments on the D.C. ballot were also overwhelmingly approved.
The measures were a result of last year's ethics reform legislation. One measure makes it easier for a council member to be expelled for gross misconduct; the other two deal with disqualifying council members or mayors who are convicted of felonies while in office. All three were approved by about a four-to-one margin. A full list of the D.C. election results is on the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics website.