District of Columbia voters were on track to pick Councilmember Muriel Bowser as their new mayor on Tuesday night, according to preliminary election results. Bowser had previously defeated current Mayor Vincent Gray in the Democratic primary.
As Washington City Paper reports, Bowser “handily won” the mayor’s race. Her main competitor, Independent Councilmember David Catania conceded at his election night party, according to City Paper.
Bowser was first elected to the D.C. Council in a 2007 special election to fill the open Ward 4 seat left by Adrian Fenty when he became mayor.
Bowser had been leading in the polls in the overwhelmingly Democratic city and as The Washington Post reported this week, she has already been quietly laying the foundation for a mayoral transition team.
Voters also approved Initiative 71, which would legalize the recreational use of marijuana. However, because of D.C.’s Home Rule relationship with Congress, lawmakers on Capitol Hill could, in theory, intervene. But it’s unclear if Congress will take any such action.