Image by Dan Reed.

Weekly, Regional Policy Director Dan Reed and DC Policy Director Alex Baca will share with you an action you can take in the immediate future that has the potential, sometimes great and sometimes small, to increase the number of homes in our region, decrease the trips people take by car, make all of it safer, and not screw people over in the process. This week: congratulations to our primary endorsees in DC; rent stabilization in Prince George’s County; and don’t forget to vote for our endorsees in Alexandria and Arlington’s primaries.

If you have any questions, email about Maryland and Virginia Do Somethings, and about Washington, DC, Do Somethings—or, about whatever you want to talk about.


Pride’s here! GGWash will be, per usual, marching in Saturday’s parade, and you can, and should, do it with us! Being in parades is literally my worst nightmare, and I tend to be somewhat inward-facing in my contemplation of my queerness as a general matter, so I, myself, will not be there—but it’s doubly meaningful to me that my colleagues show up in a way that I struggle to. You can sign up here to march with them here, and you can also buy a wonderful and hilarious Gayer Gayer Washington t-shirt, which, yes, was designed with crop-top potential in mind.

As Pride cometh, the election fadeth away. big congrats to all of GGWash’s primary endorsees: It’s over! You did it! Regardless of outcome, we’re very proud of Robert White, Janeese Lewis George, Eboni-Rose Thompson, Salim Adofo, Ankit Jain, and Oye Owolewa for their hard work during the District’s primary election, and are grateful to all candidates who participated in GGWash’s endorsements process. Here are my very quick takes on the races in which we endorsed:

  • At-large Democratic seat: Incumbent Robert White won his race with 82 percent. I would like to think that he is taking this as a mandate to go hard. He can start, literally, today: The council is still working on the budget and, in my opinion, at least a couple more members should make a run at raising revenue. White is better-poised to do so than ever, considering the Committee on Housing’s budget supports permanent supportive housing and emergency rental assistance vouchers, both of which badly need more funding. As we said in the very first line of our endorsement of him this time around, “It often feels like White is continually running for office,” and it’s reasonable to assume that he’ll make another executive bid in 2026. It’d be nice if he led that seemingly inevitable race with serious, tangible achievements.
  • Ward 4: It’s Lewis George’s ward, and you’re just living in it. No, but seriously, Ward 4 knows what it wants. Congrats, Janeese! We’re looking forward to the incumbent showing her values for a more equitable, working-class-friendly city through strong support for the forthcoming bus-priority project on Georgia Avenue (which is going to require moving a lot of space currently given over to drivers), and more, and more dense, housing throughout her ward.
  • Ward 7: Wendell Felder didn’t really nail our questionnaire, but, you know, props to him on his win. He counted among his fans some Friends of the Streetcar affiliates; I hope, for their sake, that Felder really does deliver on the street, though, whatever happens, I expect a rather Brandon Todd-ish setup for the mayorally aligned young Wendell. I also hope that Payne sticks around in local politics to disprove the allegations of carpetbagging, and that Thompson continues to follow her ambition to heights greater than the State Board of Education.
  • Ward 8: It’s always frustrating to see a field split three ways and deliver the incumbent a win. I’m disappointed that our endorsee, Salim Adofo, didn’t pull it off, because I was intrigued by the potential that the Ward 8 race might leap over the Trayon White status quo. A new Ward 8 councilmember would have forced a more considerable shuffling of committee assignments, and could have reset some councilmembers’ expectations of the office. I genuinely don’t quite know what Ward 8 residents can or should expect from their councilmember in his third term, but it’s obvious enough voters—between about 20 percent for Rahman Branch and 28 percent for Adofo—would have preferred an alternative to White. I hope this race indicates the building of a more dynamic political bench in Ward 8 going forward.
  • Shadow seats: Go Oye! Go Ankit! We’re stoked for both of our endorsees, who ran against longtime Democratic-party stalwarts and won, which made the shadow-seats elections a bit spicier than they are typically. The District’s senator and representative roles are nonvoting, volunteer positions charged with advocating for statehood, and we are particularly pleased that Jain, our incoming shadow senator, is closely aligned with GGWash on housing, transportation, and land use. We’re looking forward to the ability to more publicly yoke our issues, like road pricing and the Height Act, to the pursuit of statehood.

The next phase of our endorsement work in the District’s 2024 elections will be for Advisory Neighborhood Commission seats. If you’re a sitting ANC and are planning to run again, let me know (especially if, but regardless of whether, we endorsed you in 2022)! Send me an email at If you are considering running for an ANC seat, I’d also appreciate it if you let me know, and if you saved the date for our training on how to run for an ANC seat, and what to consider when serving as a commissioner: Mark your calendar for Monday, July 1, 2024, and Monday, July 8, 2024. I’ll share signup forms as soon as I set them up, and more information on our ANC endorsement process when I’ve got it. —AB


Next weekend: I’m moderating a panel on housing supply and equity at a fundraiser hosted by Communities United Against Hate, a nonprofit “whose mission is to unite our diverse community to combat bigotry, support victims of hate, and promote inclusiveness in the DMV and elsewhere.” Joining me will be panelists Brian Kramer, an MCPS teacher and former GGWash contributor, Chuck Cook, chief legislative officer for Maryland’s housing department, Montgomery County planning director Jason Sartori, author and researcher Richard Kahlenberg, and state delegate Vaughn Stewart. There will be food! It’s Saturday, June 15 from 2-4 pm in Potomac, but you’ll have to RSVP to get the address.

Meanwhile: Last spring, Prince George’s County enacted a temporary rent stabilization bill–one of the strictest in the region–capping rent increases at three percent. Even though rents in the county are significantly lower than neighboring jurisdictions, it also has a higher share of rent-burdened households, paying more than 30% of their monthly income on housing, meaning they’re even less able to absorb a large rent increase.

Before the bill expires in October, the County Council could make rent stabilization permanent. What’s on the table now is basically what Montgomery County passed last year: rents can go no higher than three percent plus inflation or six percent, whichever is lower.

That was a compromise between proposals from the more moderate and progressive wings of the council, and Prince George’s County may follow suit. The current bill is sponsored by six of the eleven councilmembers, some of whom tend to be more business-friendly. Meanwhile, tenant organizers want to keep the cap at three percent, and councilmember Krystal Oriadha, who represents inside-the-Beltway communities like Suitland and Capitol Heights, is considering a stricter bill.

In a recent WTOP story, Oriadha and Brian Anleu, who represents the Apartment and Office Building Association, laid out the urgent need for rent stabilization, and its limits:

“We need housing at all levels, including market rate, including what some people label as ‘luxury housing,’” Anleu said. “The reality is when you build housing at those price points, it opens up housing for other people downstream…”

Oriadha said it’s too late for that.

“The reality is that currently, right now, we have residents who can’t afford what’s happening,” she said. “So what happens to them? Let’s say we don’t do anything for the hope of new housing that people also can’t afford? And then the current housing that people cannot afford?”

They’re both right. Our position is that rent stabilization is a sometimes food: it keeps tenants in their homes and communities, keeps neighborhoods stable and protects people from predatory landlords–but it cannot produce affordable homes, nor can it guarantee long-term affordability in a community. Only building more housing can do that.

Earlier this year, our friends at Enterprise Community Partners–people who build and advocate for affordable housing–gave a presentation to the County Council where they described the delicate balancing act of rent stabilization. Make the rules too strict and nothing gets built, meaning renters have even fewer choices; make them too loose, and low-income renters keep getting displaced. Their recommendation was to cap rent increases at no more than 10%, higher than Montgomery County, but comparable to DC’s law.

There’s no public hearing scheduled for Prince George’s rent stabilization bill yet, and we don’t have a position on it–especially if a competing bill is on the way–but we’ll keep you posted.

If you have a few minutes: Tell your friends in Arlington and Alexandria to vote, and make sure they’ve seen our endorsements!—DR


There are just eight days left of early voting in Virginia before the actual election day June 18, and if you haven’t already, please check out our endorsements for Arlington County Board and mayor and City Council in Alexandria! Here’s how you can help get them elected–in addition to voting, of course:

Visit the candidates’ websites, where you can find opportunities to volunteer and donate to their campaigns:

See if you’re registered to vote in Virginia and make a plan to vote!

If you’re planning on early voting, here’s where you can go in Arlington or Alexandria.

If you’re voting on Election Day, find your polling place in Arlington or Alexandria.

I encourage you to support these eight campaigns however you can!—DR

Your support of GGWash enables us, Dan and Alex, to do our jobs. Our jobs are knowing how development and planning works in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. If it’s appropriate to take action to advance our goals, which we hope you share, we can let you know what will have the most impact, and how to do it well. You can make a financial contribution to GGWash here. And if you want to see Do Something in your inbox, scroll down and sign up for our daily emails.