At-large D.C. Councilman Phil Mendelson was selected by his colleages Wednesday morning to take over as chairman of the body until a special election in November.

Several legislators noted the importance of showing unity in selecting their next leader after a tumultous week in which Kwame Brown resigned as chairman before being hit with a federal bank fraud charge and a campaign finance charge.

While Mendelson's election as chair came easily, picking his No. 2 did not. A heated and emotional debate was launched, and Vincent Orange failed in his attempt to get that No. 2 spot, the council pro tempore position.

Council members eventually selected Michael Brown for the position. Only at-large members were eligible.