D.C. Councilmembers unanimously voted to recommend expelling Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans from the governing body at a meeting Tuesday.
The D.C. Council’s ad hoc committee, which was created to review findings of the Council’s investigation into Evans’ business dealings and is comprised of every councilmember except Evans, voted 12-0 to recommend removing Evans from his position. The decision comes almost a month after a report on the Council’s investigation into Evans’ actions revealed that the Ward 2 representative had violated D.C. Council ethics codes at least 11 times.
“Mr. Evans has betrayed each and every one of us – his colleagues, the government and the residents of the District of Columbia,” Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh and the chair of the ad hoc committee tweeted Tuesday. “I don’t think there is any other action that we can fairly take other than expulsion. Nothing short of that would be proportionate to what he’s done.”
Evans declined the committee’s invitation to testify at the meeting. Evans did not return a request for comment.
Chairman Phil Mendelson said in a statement released Tuesday Evans’ behavior created “severe” circumstances that required Councilmembers to determine whether he’s fit to serve on the Council.
“The voters are supreme: they decide whom to elect, and whom to vote out of office,” Mendelson said. “For each of us, our compact with the public is unilateral. So the circumstances must be extreme for the Council as a body to intervene.”
Mayor Muriel Bowser said the Council decided Evans’ behavior was an “egregious breach of the public trust.” But she said Evans has also advanced the “great quality of life” in Ward 2 for nearly 30 years.
Bowser said she has asked the Council to be “fair and urgent” when considering how to reprimand Evans.
“As a former member of the Council and now mayor, I stand by them as they make these very difficult decisions,” she said.
The ad hoc committee will meet again on Dec. 10.