By Mike DeBonis and Annie GOWEN, Washington Post – D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser launched a mayoral bid Saturday, kicking off a year-long Democratic primary campaign that is likely to center on the pace of progress in city government, the ethics of elected officials and the direction of the city’s remarkable growth.
Promising to fight for a “fair chance and a seat at the table” for all District residents, Bowser made her announcement in front of her childhood home in North Michigan Park, a neighborhood of brick duplexes and modest detached homes that have housed working-class, mostly African-American Washingtonians for generations.
Council member’s comments indicate strategy to exploit Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s perceived weaknesses.
“Will you go the distance with me?” Bowser asked a cheering crowd of more than 100 supporters. “It won’t be easy, but we need a change.”
Bowser’s remarks Saturday and in an interview with The Washington Post indicate that the Ward 4 Democrat is designing her campaign to exploit Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s perceived weaknesses — his deliberate bearing and the wide-ranging federal investigation into his 2010 campaign.Bowser did not mention Gray directly in her announcement but said city residents want a mayor who is “not seduced by the perks of the office or the power that comes with it, but humbled by the opportunity to lead.”
“Corruption has robbed is of our focus, our momentum, our need to think big and act swiftly,” she said. “We’ve settled into the status quo.”
Bowser, a political confidante of former mayor Adrian M. Fenty, becomes the first candidate to officially enter the race, leapfrogging Gray, who could announce a reelection bid before late fall, when candidates begin circulating ballot petitions for the April Democratic primary. Other council members could also enter the contest: Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6) has formed an exploratory campaign, Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) has said he plans to run, and David A. Catania (I-At Large) is pondering a bid.
Read more at The Washington Post – http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/muriel-bowser-enters-dcs-mayoral-contest/2013/03/23/e8116376-93c8-11e2-ba5b-550c7abf6384_story.html