In the 2010 Mayoral primary, 54% of District voters voted for Vincent Gray to be Mayor of the District of Columbia. Recently, 3 DC City Councilmembers have called on the elected Mayor for his resignation because of the continued drama in his 2010 Mayoral campaign, starting with the claim by Mr. Sulaimon Brown that he was offered a job and was paid by the Gray for Mayor 2010 Campaign to discredit the competition, specifically Adrian Fenty, to the most current development that more than $650,000 were injected into a shadow campaign to help the than DC Council Chairman Vincent Gray defeat former Mayor Adrian Fenty. There is an on-going investigation on these allegations with the US Attorney for the District of Columbia, Ronald Machen.
Now, arguably, for whatever reason, a lot of people disliked the former Mayor and wanted him out of office. Mayor Fenty started his campaign way in advance of Vincent Gray, and with a historical record of over $4 million dollars he still lost by a 10% margin. And yes, while no one wants to be on the side of wrong doing, it is highly unlikely that the alleged shadow campaign worth around $650,000 would have changed the outcome of the election. Once the on-going investigation is over, I believe we’ll be able to better assess any real impact this so call shadow campaign could have had in the 2010 ;election outcome. The verdict is still out on how much Mayor Gray knew of this shadow campaign. If Mayor Gray wasn’t aware of what some people were doing on his behalf, is he still guilty anyways, as one Councilmember who called on his resignation implies? Yes, it may be true that the ultimate person responsible for his campaign is Vincent Gray, but to think that he should be responsible for everyone in the city that campaigned outside of the legitimate 2010 Gray for Mayor Campaign is simply unreal and not practical, if he was unaware of such campaigning. The latter is the benefit that some members of the DC Council are not willing to give the Mayor, but that most residents of the city believe is necessary in this process. I believe that the premature calling on the Mayor’s resignation by our city legislators, while an investigation is on-going, is reckless behavior that will only bring more unnecessary drama and elevate the negative perception of the city.
These are important points. The legal process should play out. The involvement of the Federal Government in local electoral politics is a terribly intrusive thing that undermines voters’ confidence in their ability to elect people of their choice to serve in office. This is a sinister game of chess being played over our heads.
Julianne M. Robertson King Esq.