InTowner Newspaper, “enthusiastically urge the re-election without hesitation of at-large Councilmember Phil Mendelson”

Thanks to the InTowner for this endorsement (huge PDF on Page 2).

In light of Councilmember Phil Mendelson’s long record of effective advocacy for residents across the city and for his thoughtful approach to carefully analyzing the complexities of policy issues as they affect our laws and regulations—and ultimately our daily lives—and crafting legislation solutions, we have no reason to suggest that there might be any good purpose to vote him off the council.

When we took a look at the 25 bills, eight resolutions, and five reports that the council’s public safety committee, of which he is its tireless chairman, has been responsible for issuing over the past year-and-a-half, we can only conclude that its highly competent output reveals much about the skill and worth to our city of the council member. This we are not prepared to advocate tossing aside.

Among his accomplishments that are of major importance has been his work in getting the council to declare the role of the city’s attorney general as being independent from the Executive Branch and calling for the position to be filled by election.

Another major accomplishment has been his bringing to fruition the “Omnibus Public Safety and Justice Amendment Act” which affected 39 separate laws by improving various provisions thereby improving law enforcement. The Act also created new crimes, including one dealing with illegal firearms in motor vehicles, and added a new authority to address gang violence by establishing a practical, on-the-streets intervention mechanism designed to reduce such violence.

We are puzzled by complaints that we hear in some circles that the council member is not “aggressive” enough, that he’s too “low-key” and therefore isn’t effective. We strongly disagree. While we admire legislators who come on strong (but only if they are especially smart and knowledgeable), this doesn’t mean that one who is quiet isn’t equally effective. This is a council member who is deliberative, a stickler for detail, one who watches out for every nuance in the language of the legislation that he is called upon to vote. We need members on the council with that skill to ensure that what gets enacted into law doesn’t later reveal flaws that create unintended consequences for the city or for individual citizens.

With this, along with his constant watching out for efforts by city government officials seeking to chip away at civil rights in the name of crime prevention or other perceived dangers by bureaucrats, we enthusiastically urge the re-election without hesitation of at-large Councilmember Phil Mendelson.


Phil Mendelson Receives Gertrude Stein Endorsement, Wins 62% of the vote against gay challenger

Phil Mendelson received the endorsement of the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club this evening, winning with 62% of the votes cast.  Mendelson’s name was placed in nomination by former Ward Six Councilmember Sharon Ambrose who spoke forcefully of Phil’s “honesty, institutional knowledge and focus on detail that is critical to Council deliberation especially during these fiscally trying times.”

Mendelson has won the Stein endorsement previously, as well as the Stein Justice Award in 2009 and the Wanda Alston Democratic Service Award in 2008.  This year, however, the At-Large endorsement prize was particularly important and hard fought.  

Campaign supporter, Barbara Helmick, reminded the overflow crowd that Mendelson, the Councilmember who is most responsible for marriage equality in the District, has been the community’s strongest ally on the Council, repealing anti-gay laws in the criminal code, securing full rights and responsibilities of Domestic Partners, and greatly expanding parental rights of LGBT families.

“We need to value our straight allies,” she said, “What do you imagine that it would it say about the political sophistication our community — especially this year — were we not to vote for Phil simply because his opponent is gay?”

“You know a man by the company he keeps,” reminded activist Bob Summersgill, “This year Phil has also been endorsed by the DC Firefighters, Sierra Club, DC for Democracy, DC Latino Caucus, Friends of the Earth Action and too many labor organizations to count — which speaks volumes about his support from the public safety sector, environmental community and working men and women. Phil is the progressive candidate in this race.”  

Among those Stein members proudly wearing Mendelson stickers last night were Deacon Maccubbin, of Lambda Rising,two former Stein Club Presidents – Paul Kuntzler and Kurt Vorndran, AIDS activist, Dr. Patricia Hawkins and civil rights legend Dr. Frank Kameny.

Phil was visibly moved by the large outpouring of support from friends and community activists from across the city that enabled him to win the coveted endorsement.  “The LGBT community has stood behind me in every race that I’ve ever run,” he said. “But this year, it’s particularly meaningful.  I thank the members of Stein for their overwhelming vote of confidence.  I’m humbled by their support.”

Walk with Phil on the Fourth!

JOIN US! – Come join Phil and fellow campaign supporters at the 44th annual Palisades Fourth of July parade on Sunday.  It’s DC’s answer to Norman Rockwell – a real old-fashioned neighborhood parade.

WHO’S COMING?  Phil Mendelson’s supporters, neighborhood children on decorated bicycles, the Washington Scottish Bagpipe Band, Andean musical groups, the D.C. Different Drummers Marching Band, the D.C. Fire Department Engine Company 29, the United Horseman’s Association, clowns, vintage cars, all the candidates and — anybody who’s anybody.  

THERE’S A FREE PICNIC – BRING THE KIDS!  After the Parade, there will be a free picnic at Palisades Recreation Center with hot dogs, juice and fresh fruits.  There will be clowns, a spray area, horseback rides, and two moon bounces.  It’s a terrific time.

WHERE TO MEET — Phil and company will have a vintage red convertible decked out for the Fourth of July.  We’ll be flying the flag, greeting the crowds and handing out stickers along the route.  And we’ll meet at 11:30 just south of the corner of Whitehaven Parkway and Mac Arthur Boulevard, N.W.   

RESERVE YOUR MENDELSON T-SHIRT- Call Barbara Helmick at (202) 462-6702. So, put on your shorts and sneakers and grab a camera.  Lots of Kodak moments just waiting to be captured.  Next to the fireworks, the Palisades Parade is the best show in town!  

TO VOLUNTEER, DONATE OR GET A YARD SIGN the easiest way to do that is go to our website:  And don’t forget to “Friend Phil” on our new Facebook page: Phil Mendelson For Council on Facebook.

 For more information about Phil’s campaign: or call us at  202-604-5033

Come Join Phil and March in the Pride Parade on Saturday, June 12!

Washington, DC – June 12, 2010 — This week is Pride Week in the District of Columbia. A week-long series of cultural, athletic, community and religious events presented by Washington’s LGBT community, it is one of the most festive times of the year in DC and marks a prelude to summer. A commemoration of the Stonewall Riots in NY, where gay men and lesbians stood up to oppression, Pride has become a tradition throughout the world and here in Washington where our city will host 250,000 people this weekend.

“Especially this year — the 35th Anniversary of Capital Pride and year when marriage equality became a reality in the District of Columbia — it’s a time for all Washingtonians to celebrate our diversity and reflect on the gains that we have made as a community working together,” said Mendelson.

Phil wishes all the members of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community in the Washington Metropolitan Area a very happy pride and looks forward to seeing everyone at the Parade on Saturday evening and at his booth on the Festival grounds on Pennsylvania Avenue on Sunday afternoon.

Phil is marching in the Pride Parade on Saturday, June 12, as he has done for the past dozen or more. And his daughter, Addie, will be riding in the convertible as she does every year, helping to distribute thousands of ‘flowered’ leis to the crowd. If you’ve never marched in a Pride Parade it’ll be an experience you’ll remember forever. So, come on down and walk with Phil and friends. It’ll be a heck of a lot of fun. We line up just south of P and 23 Street, NW beginning at 5:30PM. We’ll have Mendelson tee-shirts on hand for you to wear. If you have any questions, give a call to Celeste at 202-270-6877. And remember — this parade goes on no matter what the weather. But nothing rains on this parade!

Happy Pride, everyone! 

Fundraiser at the home of Nancy Polikoff and Cheryl Swannack

June 3, 2010 6:00pm – 8:00pm
2904 GarfieldTerrace, NW

Hosted by:

Laura Astrada Shannon Davis ∙ Evi Beck ∙ Jeff Berns ∙ Adam Bink ∙ Robert Brannum ∙ Barrett Brick ∙ Leslie Calman ∙ Michael Crawford ∙ Ruth Eisenberg Letitia Gomez ∙ Mary Farmer Laura Flegel ∙ Rev. Robert M. Hardies Christopher Nealon ∙ Barbara Helmick ∙ Donald Hitchcock ∙ Paul Yandura ∙ Meryl Hooker Kyle Todd ∙ Craig Howell ∙ Brian Ions ∙ Frank Kameny ∙ Barbara Lewis ∙ Andy Litsky ∙ Deacon MacCubbin Jim Bennett ∙ David Mariner ∙ Shannon Minter ∙ Nancy Polikoff Cheryl Swannack ∙ Robert Raben ∙ Cathy Renna ∙ Debbi Rich ∙ Linda Watts ∙ Mitchell Story Dr. Douglas Favero ∙ Kurt Vorndran ∙ Jannette Williams ∙ Imani Woody ∙ Michele Zavos ∙ Ellen Cull