Evans, Gray, Robert White Lead GLAA Ratings in June 14 D.C. Council Primaries
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Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013

May 11, 2016 (Revised May 20, 2016)

Contact: Rick Rosendall, President
202-328-6278

Evans, Gray, Robert White Lead GLAA Ratings in June 14 D.C. Council Primaries

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Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans and Ward 7 candidate Vincent C. Gray earned top ratings of +10 from the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA) for the June 14 D.C. Council primaries. Other strong scorers were At-Large candidate Robert White with +8.5 and Ward 8 Councilmember LaRuby May with +7.5. At-Large Statehood-Green candidate G. Lee Aikin, the only non-Democrat to respond to GLAA's candidate questionnaire, earned +7.5. GLAA held its ratings meeting on May 10. A key to available ratings points is provided below.

The following are explanations of the individual ratings for D.C. Council primary candidates. Note: Ratings marked with an asterisk (*) indicate a candidate who did not return GLAA's questionnaire and was therefore rated solely on his or her known record on GLAA's issues.

At-Large

Democratic candidate Robert White (+8.5) agreed with GLAA on all issues and offered impressive substance in his questionnaire. He has been an ally of the LGBT community in his past work for Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton and Attorney General Karl Racine.

Statehood-Green candidate G. Lee Aikin (+7.5) agreed with GLAA on all issues and showed good substance in her questionnaire. She has a record of supporting LGBT concerns.

Democratic candidate David Garber (+6.5) agreed with GLAA on all issues and showed good substance in his questionnaire, but has a limited record on LGBT issues.

Democratic incumbent Vincent Orange (+4), who a decade ago called rival mayoral candidates morally unfit for office for supporting marriage equality, showed significant improvement over his performance in 2012 (when he earned a +0.5). He agrees with GLAA on most issues, but opposes GLAA on school vouchers. He offered no substance in his questionnaire. In recent years he has been an ally for LGBT issues on the Council.

Republican candidate Carolina Celnik (+1.5) was rated based on her late-submitted questionnaire. She opposes GLAA on school vouchers, separating Emergency Medical Services from the Fire Department, and Death with Dignity, but provided some positive substance. She has shown no record on LGBT issues.

Ward 2

Democratic incumbent Jack Evans (+10), who is unchallenged, agreed with GLAA on the issues and offered strong substance in his questionnaire. His extensive record of support for LGBT issues includes sodomy repeal, domestic partnerships, condom availability, clean needle exchange, creation of the police department's Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit, reestablishing the Office of Police Complaints, and marriage equality. He ties Ward 7 candidate Vincent C. Gray with the highest rating in this primary cycle.

Ward 4

Democratic candidate Leon T. Andrews, Jr. (+6) agreed with GLAA on most issues and provided some substance in his questionnaire. He has a good record on LGBT issues.

Democratic incumbent Brandon Todd (+5) disagreed with GLAA on school vouchers and separating Emergency Medical Services from the Fire Department, and offered limited substance in his questionnaire. He has been an ally for LGBT issues on the Council.

Democratic candidate Calvin H. Gurley (+3.5) agreed with GLAA on most issues but offered little substance and has a limited record on LGBT issues.

Democratic candidate Ron Austin (0*) did not submit a questionnaire and has no known record on LGBT issues.

Ward 7

Democratic candidate Vincent C. Gray (+10) agreed with GLAA on the issues and offered strong substance in his questionnaire. The former mayor's extensive record includes launching the LGBTQ Youth Task Force, the Bullying Prevention Task Force, the city's first transgender employment initiative under Project Empowerment, the Transgender and Gender Identity Respect Campaign, and ending the denial of healthcare coverage to transgender residents. As Council Chair in 2009 he shepherded marriage equality legislation through the Council. He ties Ward 2 incumbent Jack Evans with the highest rating in this primary cycle.

Democratic incumbent Yvette M. Alexander (+5.5), the sole current councilmember who voted against marriage equality in 2009 (the other "no" vote then was the late Marion Barry), showed significant improvement over her performance in 2012 (when she earned a -3.5). She agrees with GLAA on most issues, though she offered limited substance in her answers. She has supported pro-LGBT legislation on issues including birth certificates, cultural competency for healthcare providers, and prohibiting conversion therapy for minors. She has also allocated additional HOPWA funding of $500,000 in Fiscal Year 2016. On the other hand, she is noncommittal on the Death with Dignity bill currently pending in her committee.

Democratic candidate Delmar Chesley (0*) did not submit a questionnaire and has no known record on LGBT issues.

Democratic candidate Grant Thompson (0*) did not submit a questionnaire and has no known record on LGBT issues.

Ward 8

Democratic incumbent LaRuby May (+7.5) agreed with GLAA on all issues, showed significant substance in her questionnaire, and has been a reliable ally on the Council, including with her signature on a joint letter to Rep. Jason Chaffetz in October 2015 opposing congressional imposition of private school vouchers on the District.

Democratic candidate Trayon White (+4) agreed with GLAA in his questionnaire, but offered little substance and has a limited record on LGBT issues.

Democratic candidate Aaron Holmes (+2) agreed with GLAA on most issues, but offered scant substance and has no known record on LGBT issues.

Democratic candidate Maurice T. Dickens (+0.5) submitted a late questionnaire response. He opposed GLAA on separating EMS from Fire, on Death with Dignity, and on the Police Monitoring Enhancement Amendment Act. He offered no substance. He has no known record on LGBT issues.

Democratic candidate Bonita Goode (0*) did not submit a questionnaire and has no known record on LGBT issues.


GLAA rates candidates on a scale of -10 to +10, based on their answers to our questionnaire and their record on behalf of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The questionnaire addresses a variety of issues including public health, public safety, human rights, youth and seniors, and defending LGBT consumers and businesses. The GLAA agenda, questionnaire, and complete candidate responses are available online at www.glaa.org.

All candidates were provided a copy of "Building on Victory," GLAA's 2016 policy brief on LGBT issues in Washington, D.C.

Ratings should not be interpreted as endorsements. GLAA does not endorse candidates in partisan elections.

GLAA has rated candidates in every D.C. primary and general election since 1971. Independent council candidates will be rated prior to the general election.

Founded in 1971, the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C. is an all-volunteer, non-partisan, non-profit political organization that defends the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the Nation's Capital. We are the nation's oldest continuously active gay and lesbian civil rights organization.

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GLAA Ratings for June 14, 2016 D.C. Primary Election


To see the full text of a candidate's questionnaire responses, click on his or her name below.


At-Large DC Councilmember

Candidate
Party
Rating
Robert White
Democrat
8.5
G. Lee Aikin
Statehood-Green
7.5
David Garber
Democrat
6.5
Vincent Orange (Incumbent)
Democrat
4
Carolina Celnik
Republican
1.5

Ward 2 DC Councilmember

Candidate
Party
Rating
Jack Evans (Incumbent)
Democrat
10

Ward 4 DC Councilmember

Candidate
Party
Rating
Leon T. Andrews, Jr.
Democrat
6
Brandon Todd (Incumbent)
Democrat
5
Calvin H. Gurley
Democrat
3.5
Ron Austin
Democrat
0 *

Ward 7 DC Councilmember

Candidate
Party
Rating
Vincent C. Gray
Democrat
10
Yvette M. Alexander (Incumbent)
Democrat
5.5
Delmar Chesley
Democrat
0 *
Grant Thompson
Democrat
0 *

Ward 8 DC Councilmember

Candidate
Party
Rating
LaRuby May (Incumbent)
Democrat
7.5
Trayon White
Democrat
4
Aaron Holmes
Democrat
2
Maurice T. Dickens
Democrat
0.5
Bonita Goode
Democrat
0 *

Note: Ratings marked with an asterisk (*) indicate a candidate who did not return a questionnaire
and was therefore rated solely on his or her known record on GLAA's issues.

Key to available ratings points

Questionnaire: yes/no+/- 2 points
Questionnaire: substantive grasp of issues+/- 4 points
Record:+/- 4 points
Total available:+/- 10 points

Click here to view a detailed breakdown of all candidates' ratings points.

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