**FILE** D.C. Council member Kenyan McDuffie announces his bid for the city's attorney general during an Oct. 21 press conference outside his Ward 5 home. (Abdullah Konte/The Washington Informer)
**FILE** D.C. Council member Kenyan McDuffie announces his bid for the city's attorney general during an Oct. 21 press conference outside his Ward 5 home. (Abdullah Konte/The Washington Informer)

The D.C. Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that D.C. Council member Kenyan McDuffie is ineligible to run for attorney general because he doesn’t meet the requirements of city law.

The court affirmed the decision of the D.C. Board of Elections made on April 18. Bruce Spiva, a rival candidate for attorney general, initiated the challenge against the Ward 5 councilman.

Specifically, the court said McDuffie had not actively engaged in the practice of law for 5-10 years, as defined by the statute. His attorney Baruch Weiss had argued before the court that McDuffie was eligible for the position due to his work as a council member and that entailed legal work.

The court accepted the argument of the attorneys for the board and Spiva. The court had to move quickly because appeals for candidates to appear in the June 21 Democratic primary had to be completed by the end of business Thursday.

The McDuffie campaign issued the following statement shortly after the ruling:

Our legal team has reviewed today’s decision from the D.C. Court of Appeals. While we respect the three-judge panel, we respectfully disagree with its conclusion, which we believe — along with many legal scholars and legislative authorities— is contrary to the language, legislative history and intent of the statute. It is also at odds with the position of the majority of the Councilmembers who authored and voted in support of the qualifications language. Furthermore, the court’s decision deprives District of Columbia residents the opportunity to elect the leaders of their choice.

We are deeply grateful to the countless District residents and elected, civic, clergy, and community leaders in all 8 Wards for their support. In order to continue the fight to ensure that the doors of democracy are fully open for all District residents, we have filed for an emergency stay and expedited petition for rehearing en banc by the full D.C. Court of Appeals of today’s panel decision and will be continuing our campaign.

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1 Comment

  1. I am so happy he is out. Can’t run for his old seat as Ward 5 CM, a job he didn’t perform in the first place, and now out as AG. Go back to private practice and chase ambulances, that is better suited for him.

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