Washington’s Mayor Sees Bright Side

Photograph by Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray in this file photo.

Washington Mayor Vincent Gray, who is under investigation for allegations of misusing campaign funds, was upbeat and optimistic about his tenure over lunch at the Georgetown Ritz Carlton.

Gray was the guest and interview subject of Washingtonian editor-at-large Carol Joynt as part of her “Q & A Cafe” program, which is aired on local television.

Gray cited progress in the field of education, saying the District of Columbia has “the most robust early-education program in America.” He also said that unemployment has declined to almost 8 percent from more than 11 percent when he took office.

When Joynt questioned him about how his administration is seen by investors in the wake of his scandals, he saidm“I haven’t had one question from Wall Street. They look at the books.” (Two Gray aides pled guilty in federal court to misusing campaign funds and lying under oath. He is still under investigation.)

Gray acknowledged “the hugely changed population” in the District, but dodged questions about the possibility of a white mayor. City Councilman Jack Evans is among the likely white candidates to run against Gray next year. If Evans should prevail, he would be the District’s first white mayor.

At the lunch, Gray also waded into lighter subject matters, such as his fondness for bulk-shopping at Costco (he buys his cat food there) and his preference for San Francisco to win the Super Bowl.

 

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