WASHINGTON (AP) — District of Columbia residents will elect the seventh mayor in the history of District self-rule in November. Here are five things to know about the election:
1. DEMOCRATIC DOMINANCE: Seventy-six percent of registered voters in the District are Democrats, but even that number doesn't do justice to the party's dominance of local politics. Just six percent of registered voters are Republicans, while 17 percent are independents. The Democratic nominee has gone on to win every mayoral election in the city's history. The current mayor and 11 of the 13 D.C. councilmembers are Democrats. The other two council seats are reserved for members of a non-majority party and are held by left-leaning independents. No Republican has been elected to the council since 2004.
2. INCUMBENT WOES: In April, Mayor Vincent Gray lost the Democratic primary, becoming the District's second straight one-term mayor. Adrian Fenty served one term before he was ousted in the 2010 primary by Gray. While Fenty's brusque personality was largely blamed for his ouster, Gray was damaged by scandal. Five people who worked on his 2010 campaign have pleaded guilty to felonies, and the outgoing mayor remains the subject of a federal investigation.
3. BOWSER'S RISE: The Democratic mayoral nominee, D.C. Councilmember Muriel Bowser, is a protege of the hard-charging Fenty, known for orchestrating a mayoral takeover of the District's public schools. With his endorsement, she won a crowded race for his former council seat, and her team of advisers and fundraisers includes many Fenty loyalists. They are nicknamed the "Green Team" for the green campaign signs favored by Fenty and Bowser.
4. MONEY RACE: Bowser has raised $2.7 million for her mayoral bid and had more than $1 million left to spend as of Aug. 10. Her closest challenger, independent Councilmember David Catania, has brought in $770,000 and had $460,000 left to spend. No other candidate has raised more than $70,000.
5. POSSIBLE HISTORY: Should Catania upset Bowser, he would become the first white mayor and the first openly gay mayor in the city's history. He is also a former Republican, although he left the party in 2004 and has since compiled a progressive record on many issues, including gay marriage and access to health care.