WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser gained the Democratic major on Tuesday, overcoming a progressive rival and nearly guaranteeing that she’s going to win a 3rd consecutive time period to guide a metropolis confronting inequality, crime and public security issues.
Bowser defeated At-large Councilmember Robert White, who harshly criticized her response to spiraling violent crime charges, and Councilmember Trayon White, who represents Ward 8, the poorest and most crime-ridden space within the district.
The winner of the Democratic major is the prohibitive favourite within the November normal election within the closely Democratic metropolis. That may make Bowser the second mayor to win three consecutive phrases, tying with Marion Barry, who presided over the town repeatedly from 1979 to 1991.
The first in Washington unfolded as many cities which might be Democratic strongholds debate methods to deal with crime. In Washington, homicides have risen for 4 years straight, and the 2021 homicide rely of 227 was the very best mark since 2003. In January, a candidate for the D.C. Council, Nate Fleming, was carjacked at gunpoint. On Sunday night time, gunfire erupted at a avenue live performance 2 miles from the White Home, killing a 15-year-old boy and wounding three others, together with a police officer.
Below strain from activists calling to defund the police, Bowser largely stood by her police division, preventing public battles with the D.C. Council over the police finances. She quietly changed an older white police chief with a youthful Black successor and has pushed for funding to construct Metropolitan Police Division staffing, presently at 3,500, as much as 4,000 officers over the subsequent decade.
In April, the D.C. Council’s judiciary committee reduce $6 million from Bowser’s $30 million finances proposal to rent extra officers, focusing on incentives Bowser claimed had been very important to draw good candidates. The committee, on which neither of her challengers serves, did approve a $20,000 hiring bonus to assist recruit extra cops, one thing Bowser introduced just a few days earlier than the first.
“I’ve by no means been to a neighborhood the place they mentioned they didn’t need the police. By no means,” Bowser mentioned in a radio debate final month. “We want the police that we want.”
In the summertime of 2020, following mass protests over the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, Bowser publicly feuded with then-President Donald Trump after racial justice protesters had been forcibly cleared from an space close to the White Home. Bowser responded by renaming the protest epicenter Black Lives Matter Plaza and commissioning a mural with “Black Lives Matter” painted on a stretch of sixteenth Avenue, one block from the White Home, in large yellow letters.
Bowser, 49, campaigned on her expertise and management and her historical past as one of many faces of Washington’s ongoing quest for statehood. She additionally obtained good marks for her dealing with of the pandemic, usually working in coordination with the D.C. Council.
Robert White, 40, had a historical past of profitable rebel campaigns, having unseated an entrenched incumbent for an at-large Council seat in 2016. He proposed tackling crime by means of a large private and non-private youth jobs program that Bowser derided as unsustainable.
Trayon White, 38, invoked the spirit of Barry, the late mayor and council member who stays a controversial however beloved determine amongst many Washingtonians. A former grassroots neighborhood activist, White was a protégé of Barry’s and opposed Bowser’s bids to rent extra cops. He favors neighborhood violence intervention packages, one thing he says Bowser was sluggish to embrace.