Thursday, March 22, 2007

Why is there so much hatred toward Muriel Bowser?

As I have said many times I haven't made up my mind yet how I will vote, or for that matter who I will endorse. But a friend of my wrote me today asking a very interesting question: Why did Muriel Bowser win her ANC seat so convincingly?

ANC FOR SMD 4B09 (1) 1/1 100.00%
Under Votes: 84
Over Votes:
MURIEL E. BOWSER 601 89.57%
Write In, if any 70 10.43%
Total ... 671 100.00%

The above is from the DC election website. It seems Muriel Bowser won her ANC seat with 601 votes and only 70 votes were written in against her. It appears noone even officially ran against her. So where is the all hate from?


NitPicker said...

It certainly says something positive about Muriel Bowser that nobody ran against her. But to put that 89.57% vote in context, there were three other unopposed commissioners in her ANC, and their percentages were 97.38%, 97.47%, and 95.36%. The last of those was running for the first time.

One could ask why Muriel attracted over twice the percentage of negative votes as compared to any other unopposed candidate.

RCPage in Ward4 said...

In past 4B elections, the seat in some SMDs didn't always have multiple candidates and/or significant voter turnout. So for some ANCs, their elections were "shoe-in". These types of patterns across the city aren't uncommon, based on what I have seen in results posted over the years on the BOEE website.

Speaking for myself and what I know from some of Muriel Bowser's her critics, she just has not done some of the work that she claims to have done in her community. As treasurer of the ANC---and in fairness, as with some past treasurers--several reports during her term were submitted delinquent, and cited by the DC Auditor in its September 2006 report.

I personally took issue with her position on a development issue at a January 2006 special ANC meeting. When her colleagues suggested that input be solicited from apartment tenants residing in an area impacted by a proposed development, she harshly snapped, "They can move!"

Even if I weren't a renter, I would take exception to her response. As a renter and taxpayer, I am not going to vote for anyone, who in so many words told me to go to hell, only a year ago. It will be interesting to see how she squares her sentiments with the affordable housing rhetoric that helped to earn her the endorsement of Service Employees International Union (SEIU).

Anonymous said...

RCPage, can you enlighten me on the work for which Muriel Bowser take credit but did not do? I have seen several posts about this but I don't recall seeing details of the "false claims."

I think that most voters can live with several delinquent reports to government overseers. But it sounds like Muriel Bowser has taken credit for creating the internet, or something like that.

vague ponderings said...

PoP I believe it goes back to what someone said in an earlier post: some people have an overinflated idea about what role the ANC is supposed to serve and Muriel didn't meet their overblown expectations. I go back, once again, to the bullet hole in the window complaint. I don't know why anyone with good sense would think the ANC needed to come see that and it's certainly not how I want my ANC spending his or her time.

As for the development in Riggs Park, I did attend a meeting about that issue in late 2005 and I think that Muriel's position seemed to be "let's revitalize this neighborhood and make it a destination and not a wasteland" whereas many of the older residents (and Riggs Park is primarily filled with retirees who have owned since the houses were built) are stereotypically averse to change. But whether Muriel is in charge of it or not, change is coming and these folks can help guide it to ensure that some of the attributes they care about remain in the community, or get run over. That's not me being callous it's me being a realist. The city has changed and Riggs Park must adjust.

On another note, I'm glad I found this blog. Tho I live in Lamond-Riggs, I spend 1/2 of my time in Petworth so I feel vested in both communities. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said... short order:

1)Protest against a liquor store
2)Chevron oil spill isues
3)Maintenance issues at LaSalle

It's one thing to show up for some photo ops after others have done the actual work, and it's another to be engaged in the process. I can distinctly recall when a LaSalle ES parent made several pleas for her assistance for maintanance at the school, to no avail. She was also noticeably silent at PSA402 meetings about a spate of shootings that occurred in her community during summer 2005.

It's not a "hatred" for her that is being expressed. Not everyone in DC is ignorant about who is seeking to represent their interests, and what they have or have not done to convince that they are qualified.

RCPage in Ward 4

Cherita said...

Well I am Cherita Whiting and I went to the residents house about the bullet hole because he called me as the Chair of the ANC in which Muriel Bowser is his commissioner. She had not responded to his plea for help so he reached out to the press they in turn contacted me. When I went to his house which just around the corner from Muriel Bowser's home he wanted to complain that MPD has told him not to fix the window, and no one would answer as to why.....He wanted and had the right to as Muriel for help since she is his elected commissioner, the resident explained to me that his calls went out to Muriel unreturned and he never got any response or visit from her so he complained and when he contacted the press the reporter called me.

The resident was then happy to see myself and the reporter now I don't know if a story was ever written but I did contact MPD and found that due to a MPD error no one ever came back out and told this resident that he could now remove the window and have it fix....all he wanted was to find someone to help him Muriel didn't I did.

On to the other issue mentioned here, I as the Chair of the ANC had to as the treasurer Faith Wheeler put in writing to the Auditor what we did or put in place to never allow what muriel Bowser did as the treasurer. Wesley Hickman another commissioner also worked on this because of his concern about us being audited and about thr regulations and ANC laws that were not followed. Our reports were over 60 so odd days late on more than 1 filing date and the auditor has the dates listed on our audit report. So as the treasurer muriel did nothing but cause more work for me as the chair...during the time she was treasurer i was the vice chair so I was not the person who needed to be watchful of her actions. and also for clarity any commissioner can expect that once the anc has taken a vote that the reports or budgets will be sent to the auditor in a timely fashion...not 68 days, 54, 62 days late.
I would also like to comment on the issue of Muriel Bowser stating that she lead the protest again Tiger Mart...if you check the newspaper files you will see one candidate "Rev. Hagler" leading a protest which was before Muriel even lived in the neighborhood...He lead the protest, he was out there waving signs, after that protest no resident ever changed their mind about how they felt....we have been having meeting in the community about the Chevron Oil Spill, they didn't start with her...she has taken issues that have been on going and tried to put her stamp on them...and lastly no one has ever wanted to run for ANC in Muriel's single member district so if no one is running against you you very well should win.

Anonymous said...

No one ran against her, that is why she won. Her own residents have blasted her on the 4D listserv for being none responsive. The bottom line is some people like her and some people don't, but why are people acting like they can't believe that she hasn't done everything under the sun....we have issues right now in Riggs that she is doing NOTHING about, some that she hasn't even got a clue. I Cherita yesterday about an issue in Riggs with the building and noise from the rec center, Muriel has done nothing Cherita made a call and also gave me a number to keep handy and so far today it is better. Muriel Bowser may smile in your face but she is not the one to win this race. These are my feelings and you do not have to agree but I have my own opinion.

Anonymous said...

For information about the role of ANCs, check out the DC government website below: Some ANCs probably go too far to act like City Councilmembers or city agencies by trying to deliver services to residents. They should focus on managing the process of gathering ideas and information, at a grassroots level, to help advise government officials.

"The Advisory Neighborhood Commissions consider a wide range of policies and programs affecting their neighborhoods, including traffic, parking, recreation, street improvements, liquor licenses, zoning, economic development, police protection, sanitation and trash collection, and the District's annual budget."

"The ANCs present their positions and recommendations on issues to various District government agencies, the Executive Branch, and the Council."

Anonymous said...

call it what you want...I call it how I see it and most residents in Riggs Park will say who is muriel bowser, they don't even know her.