Stein Club Endorses Graham, Thomas, Wells, Pannell and Panetta
Washington, DC - August 16, 2006 – The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club (Stein Club), the largest LGBT political organization in the District, endorsed the following candidates on Monday, August 14:
Jim Graham – Ward One
Harry Thomas, Jr. – Ward Five
Tommy Wells – Ward Six
Philip Pannell – Shadow Senator
Mike Panetta – Shadow Representative
A candidate for office must receive at least 60% of the vote of members present in order to receive the Stein Club’s endorsement. All votes were conducted by secret ballot.
In the first vote, Jim Graham received 79.35 %, Philip Pannell received 80%, and Mike Panetta received 64.44%. On a second run-off ballot, Tommy Wells received 70.59% and Harry Thomas, Jr. received 61.70 %. The Stein Club did not reach an endorsement in the Ward 3 race. On a second run-off ballot, Erik Gaull received 59.72 % and Bill Rice received 26.39%
“The strong participation of our members in the endorsement meeting and the endorsement results demonstrate that the LGBT community will play a key role in this year’s elections,” said Mario Acosta-Velez, President of the Stein Club.
“We are sending a strong message that the Stein Club is committed to mobilizing LGBT voters to elect candidates supportive of the LGBT community,” Acosta-Velez concluded.
"The fact that so many candidates sought the Stein endorsement highlights the important role our community plays in the District's political process,” said Darren Bowie, Stein club’s Vice President for Political Affairs.
The Stein Club, founded in 1976, is a membership organization dedicated to growing the political participation, representation, and visibility of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community in the District of Columbia’s political process. It is also the local organization of National Stonewall Democrats, a grassroots network connecting LGBT Democratic activists from all across the United States.