- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 25, 2002

The D.C. Republican Committee voted Monday to nominate D.C. Council member Carol Schwartz as its mayoral candidate in the Nov. 5 general election. The move puts Mrs. Schwartz at an interesting crossroads. The committee said it hopes Mrs. Schwartz will accept its nod. So the question is will she, indeed should she, accept the nomination?
Mrs. Schwartz has three-times won the nomination honor, and three-times lost in the general election. And, while her nomination this time around presented unique circumstances, her bottom line and the one for potential supporters remains the same: Can she win?
Her best showing in a mayoral race came in 1994, when Mrs. Schwartz captured 42 percent of the vote in the general election compared to Marion Barry's 56 percent. In 1998, voters barely paid attention, handing Anthony Williams a mandate that prevailed into the September 2002 primaries. Mrs. Schwartz remains a populist today, and handily won re-election two years ago to her citywide council seat. For some reason, though, voters have yet to elevate her status in City Hall. Republicans hope this year will be different.
This year already is quite different from election years past. The mayor's bungling of what should have been an easy re-election bid continues to reverberate citywide. It's what led to both his write-in candidacy on the Democratic primary ballot and Mrs. Schwartz's on the Republican. In those races, Mr. Williams still won over Republicans, winning 1,700 write-ins on the Republican ballot compared to 999 for Mrs. Schwartz. As far as crossover votes are concerned the very Democratic votes Mrs. Schwartz must win in order to claim victory in November just 540 Democratic voters saw fit to write in her name. That is hardly a compelling "Run, Carol, Run" showing.
Nonetheless, we look forward to Mrs. Schwartz's entry into what otherwise would have been a non-race race.

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