Continued from page 1

If and when a Democrat steps down, as happened in recent years, it was up to Ms. Bonds‘ party to ensure the vacant seat stayed in the hands of Democrats.

And that is precisely where she now sits, in the Democratic seat vacated by Phil Mendelson after he became council chairman. Mr. Mendelson sits where another Democrat, Kwame R. Brown, perched before he shamed himself out of office.

Back to Michael. A Brown, who has taken his liberal Democratic self out of the race.

In doing so, he has paved the way for Mr. Mara, who could easily be tagged a Republican In Name Only, or Rino, as they say.

With Mr. Brown’s name still on the ballot, the race becomes a crapshoot for Ms. Bonds, who now has to best a ghost candidate, Mr. Brown, and a Republican and others who all speak the same tongue.

So, here we go.

Another election that will produce another shade of blue.

Should I even bother egging Ms. Bonds and Mr. Mara on to shake things up?

• Deborah Simmons can be reached at