Marion C. Barry to run for his late father’s seat


Like father, like son.

Marion Christopher Barry, the 34-year-old son of Marion Barry, the iconic former D.C. mayor and council member who died last year, is running for his father’s seat on the district’s council.

Barry — who goes by Christopher — declared his candidacy Monday, according to the D.C. Board of Elections. A special election to fill the late Barry’s seat will be held on April 28, 2015.

The newly minted candidate, whose candidacy has been rumored since shortly after his father died, later sent a tweet about making his bid official.

In December, Barry told The Washington Post that he was “just listening to what the people want,” adding that “God will send me the message” about whether to run or not.

Despite his name recognition, the path to the council will not be an easy one for Barry. He enters into a race with 24 declared candidates, including a number of prominent Democrats in Ward 8.

During his years of power in D.C., the older Marion Barry became a national symbol of African-American political leadership.

Barry was infamously busted in 1990 on law enforcement surveillance tape smoking crack cocaine in a drug sting involving the FBI and Washington police. That footage was televised. Barry was convicted of possession and served six months in prison.

Barry, however, made a comeback and was elected to a fourth term as mayor in 1995. After leaving the mayor’s office, the older Barry was elected to the council of the District of Columbia where he served until his death.

Christopher Barry avoided prison in 2011 by pleading guilty for one felony PCP charge and another misdemeanor marijuana charge, according to the Washington Post. Barry received 18 months of supervised probation for the plea.