- The Washington Times - Monday, December 10, 2012

The D.C. Democratic State Committee selected its chairwoman, Anita Bonds, to fill a vacant seat on the city’s legislative body until a special election this spring.

Ms. Bonds will serve as an interim at-large member of the D.C. Council until April 23, when city voters will choose their preferred candidate to fulfill the term vacated by council Chairman Phil Mendelson, a Democrat.

Mr. Mendelson rose from his at-large seat when former chairman Kwame R. Brown resigned in June and pleaded guilty to bank fraud. His victory in a November election ensured he will remain chairman through 2014, leaving his at-large seat up for grabs.

Critics say the party-selection process is a poor way to install a city lawmaker, even for a short time, because it does not reflect the direct will of city voters. The selection of an interim replacement for Brown, who also rose from an at-large seat after the 2010 elections, by the city’s Democratic committee in January 2011 was widely criticized as a back-room deal.

Looking forward, Ms. Bonds has said she plans to run for the full-term seat in a crowded field that includes former at-large candidate A.J. Cooper.

Mr. Cooper, who ran as an independent in November, has filed to run as a Democrat. Other Democrats who plan to run this spring include John Capozzi, Matthew Frumin, Jon Gann and John F. Settles II. A Statehood Green party candidate, Perry Redd, has also picked up nominating petitions from the D.C. Board of Elections.

Ms. Bonds overcame interest in the interim seat from Mr. Capozzi and Doug Sloan during the appointment at Catholic University.