I stumbled across an embattled mayor today as I left a DC Council hearing on chronic truancy. The mayor was walking towards a scrum of reporters waiting outside his van at the D Street entrance of the Wilson building and I just tagged along behind and then joined the scrum afterwards.
It was interesting, though, what the ensuing exchanges bode for our city is disheartening.
Mayor Vincent Gray expressed "surprise" at the call for his resignation by one-time ally Mary Cheh of the Council, while saying he was not at all suprised by the same call by David Catania. He also voiced the same "frustration" that many of us are feeling as the city's executive branch is besieged by almost daily reports of an out-of-control and corrupt 2010 campaign.
To his credit, he seemed calm and composed despite the situation. He attempted, a bit in vain, to redirect the beat reporters attention to how well the city is functioning and a new plan about something or other about to be hatched soon. He also drew attention to his staff and how well they are functioning amidst the gathering storm.
Were the salty reporters buying in? I don't think so. After Gray was wisked away, one of them asked "What did he say?" Almost in perfect harmony, the scrum replied "Nothing."
It looks like a few weeks of avoiding responsibilty for the actions of his campaigns, both lighted and shadowed, are ahead.