Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013
For Immediate Release
Revised October 10, 2014
Contact: Rick Rosendall
Catania, Mendelson, Snowden Top GLAA Ratings
Strongly contested races for Mayor and At-Large Council were reflected in the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA) candidate ratings for the November 4 general election. Mayoral candidate David A. Catania, Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, and At-Large Council candidate Courtney R. Snowden each earned the highest possible rating of +10.
The following are explanations of the individual ratings. Note: Ratings marked with an asterisk (*) indicate a candidate who did not return a questionnaire and was therefore rated solely on his or her known record on LGBT issues.
Independent candidate David A. Catania (+10) submitted a strong questionnaire, and has an extensive record of advancing LGBT issues. Notable among his recent efforts are the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act and the Senior HIV/AIDS Education and Outreach Program Establishment Act of 2012.
Democratic candidate Muriel E. Bowser (+9) submitted a strong questionnaire revised from the primary, and has a strong record. Her co-authorship of the LGBTQ Homeless Youth Reform Amendment Act of 2013 is noted and appreciated.
Independent candidate Carol Schwartz (+8.5) submitted a strong questionnaire, and has a strong pro-LGBT record from several decades in and out of public office.
Statehood-Green candidate Faith (+3.5) agrees with GLAA on every issue, but showed a weak understanding of the issues and a weak record.
Libertarian candidate Bruce Majors (+2) has an unusual response to many of questions. His and his party's ideological distrust of government is at odds with policies and reforms favored by GLAA. Consequently, many of his responses were interpreted as non-responsive or negative.
Independent candidate Nestor Djonkam (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Democratic incumbent Phil Mendelson (+10) has been our champion on the council. His record, including shepherding the marriage equality effort through the council over a period of many years, is unchallenged. Most recently, Mr. Mendelson introduced and moved through the Council the Civil Marriage Dissolution Equality Amendment Act of 2011 and the Judicial Declaration of Parentage Amendment Act of 2011. Both are technical and not attention grabbing, but very important for protecting our families. He is one of only three candidates in the November 4 general election to receive the highest possible rating of +10.
Republican candidate Kris Hammond (+3.5) agrees with GLAA on most issues, and offered some substance. He earns credit for his public advocacy of marriage equality.
Statehood-Green candidate G. Lee Aikin (+3) (whose rating in the At-Large primary race is used here) agrees with GLAA on most issues, but fails to demonstrate an understanding of the issues. She has no known record.
Independent candidate John C. Cheeks (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Libertarian candidate Kyle Walker (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Independent candidate Courtney R. Snowden (+10) has a strong questionnaire and has a lengthy record of advancing LGBT causes in her work with the Raben Group, the Human Rights Campaign, GLSEN, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and others.
Independent candidate Graylan Scott Hagler (+9) agrees with GLAA on the issues and is a longtime ally who leads an LGBT-affirming congregation. He testified in June in support of the Conversion Therapy for Minors Prohibition Amendment Act of 2013. His service on the Steering Committee of DC Clergy United for Marriage Equality is noted and appreciated.
Independent candidate Elissa Silverman (+8) shows detailed understanding of D.C. government, including the history of the D.C. Human Rights Act and the ANC process. She reported on LGBT issues for many years and has worked on the District's transitional employment program.
Democratic incumbent Anita Bonds (+7.5) has a strong questionnaire and has shown herself to be a reliable ally in her short time on the Council. In her revised submission she added substance to her questionnaire and provided additional record information. Her recent LGBT-related record includes supporting Council member Cheh's successful effort to obtain nearly $1 million in additional funding for homeless LGBT youth; working with the Dept. of Corrections to institute a program offering voluntary HIV/AIDS/STD testing upon release from DC Jail; supporting legislation that expands the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana; working with Health Committee Chair Alexander to give authority to the Dept. of Health to administer $1.5 million in grants for HIV prevention and intervention programs in FY15; and supporting repeal of Prostitution Free Zones in the Judiciary Committee.
Independent candidate Robert White (+7.5) shows an understanding of the issues and built a solid record on legislative matters as Legislative Counsel to Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, including defending the District's marriage equality law and needle exchange program.
Independent candidate Kishan Putta (+6) agrees with GLAA on nearly all the issues, and offered some substance. His record includes working in planning and executing DC Health Link outreach and enrollment; working to lift the outdated liquor license moratorium on 17th Street, NW; and testifying for the Repeal of Prostitution Free Zones Amendment Act.
Independent candidate Brian Hart (+5) agrees with GLAA on most issues. His work on the DC Appleseed Center's HIV/AIDS reports and his work to lift the moratorium on liquor licenses in Adams Morgan are noted.
Independent candidate Khalid Pitts (+5) agrees with GLAA on most issues, but offered limited substance. He defended the rights of LGBT inmates at DC Jail, and worked with SEIU and as a member of the D.C. Health Exchange board for non-discrimination in health coverage.
Statehood-Green candidate Eugene Puryear (+4.5) has an ideological stance often at odds with GLAA's perspective. His answers were often interpreted as non-responsive or negative. He has a limited record on LGBT issues.
Independent candidate Wendell Felder (+3) agrees with GLAA on most issues but offered little substance. His non-profit organization's LGBT-affirming educational efforts with children are noted.
Independent candidate Michael D. Brown (+2) agrees with GLAA's issues but offered no substance, and documented no LGBT-related record.
Republican candidate Marc Morgan (+2*) did not return a questionnaire but his record includes his employment as a fundraiser for Equality Ohio to defeat Issue 1; Arizona Together in the No on 102 campaign; and the National Minority AIDS Council are all very admirable. However, his support for the campaigns of anti-gay politicians John Boehner, Robert Ehrlich, and Laura Knapereck detract from his record.
Independent candidate Calvin H. Gurley (+1) offered confused rants instead of substance, and documented no LGBT-related record.
Independent candidate Eric T. Jones (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Libertarian candidate Frederick Steiner (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Ward 1 Councilmember
Democratic candidate Brianne K. Nadeau (+5) has a strong questionnaire, but has a limited record on LGBT issues.
Independent candidate Ernest E. Johnson (+1.5) agrees with GLAA on most issues, but offered no substance and provided no information on his record.
Libertarian candidate John Vaught LaBeaume (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Ward 3 Councilmember
Democratic incumbent Mary M. Cheh (+8.5) has a strong questionnaire and a long track record of solid support of LGBT issues. Her co-authoring the LGBTQ Homeless Reform Amendment Act of 2013 and authoring the Conversion Therapy for Minors Prohibition Amendment Act of 2013 are particularly notable.
Libertarian candidate Ryan Sabot (0*) did not return a questionnaire and provided no information on his record.
Ward 5 Councilmember
Democratic incumbent Kenyan McDuffie (+4.5) agrees with GLAA on several issues, but has not established a strong record in his short time on the Council.
Libertarian candidate Preston Cornish (+1.5) has a political philosophy that aligns with GLAA on some issues but not others. He cited his employment at the Reason Foundation, which supports marriage equality and drug legalization, but he did not specify what he himself has done to advance those issues. Also, that organization in its libertarianism opposes anti-discrimination laws that GLAA supports.
Ward 6 Councilmember
Democratic candidate Charles Allen (+8.5) has a strong questionnaire and a long history of supporting LGBT issues as a Council staff member and President of the ward 6 Democrats. He testified in favor of marriage equality before the Council, presenting the Ward 6 Democrats' resolution in support. His rating is very good for a first time candidate.
Libertarian candidate Pranav Badhwar (+2) has responses in his questionnaire that reflect his libertarian outlook, but often clash with GLAA's positions. He has no known record.
GLAA rates candidates on a scale of -10 to +10, based on their answers to our questionnaire and their record on behalf of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. The questionnaire addresses a variety of issues on marriage and family, public health, public safety, human rights, youth, and protection for LGBT consumers and businesses. GLAA's policy brief, questionnaire, and complete candidate responses are available online at www.glaa.org.
All candidates were advised to read Building on Victory, GLAA's policy brief on LGBT issues in Washington, D.C.
Ratings should not be interpreted as endorsements. GLAA does not endorse candidates in partisan elections.
The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C., founded in 1971, is a local, all-volunteer, non-partisan, non-profit political organization devoted to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights in Washington, DC. We are the nation's oldest continuously active LGBT civil rights organization. We have rated candidates for office in every D.C. primary and general election since 1971.
To see the full text of a candidate's questionnaire responses, click on his or her name below.
Ward 1 Councilmember
Ward 3 Councilmember
Ward 5 Councilmember
Ward 6 DC Councilmember
Breakdown of available ratings points
|Questionnaire: yes/no||+/- 2 points|
|Questionnaire: substantive grasp of issues||+/- 4 points|
|Record:||+/- 3 points|
|Championship: taking the lead on an issue|
of concern to LGBT people
|+/- 1 point
|Total available:||+/- 10 points|
Note: Ratings marked with an asterisk (*) indicate a candidate who did not return a questionnaire and was therefore rated solely on his or her known record on LGBT issues.
The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC is a local, all-volunteer, non-partisan, non-profit political organization, founded in 1971 to advance the equal rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in Washington, DC. We are the nation's oldest continuously active gay and lesbian civil rights organization.