Loose Lips

Vince Gray Starts Talking

Vince Gray has spent more than a year staying quiet about the federal investigation into his last campaign. Everything from questions about his friend's guilty plea to whether he would even finish his first term elicited only a "no comment" from the mayor.

With the deadline for a re-election campaign looming, though, the mayor has changed his mind about silence. On today's episode of WAMU's Kojo Nnamdi Show, Gray insisted that he's innocent.

"I have said that I did nothing wrong from the very beginning," Gray says. Not only that, the mayor claims, he's prepared to answer more questions about the scandal in another campaign.

It's reminiscent of Gray circa 2011, when he was less able to hold his tongue when asked about campaign malfeasance. When this whole thing started with Sulaimon Brown, Gray threw a press conference to deny (incorrectly, as it turned out) that his campaign gave money to the fringe candidate.

Today's interview makes Gray look like a candidate for re-election, but the mayor stayed cagey about whether he's running. Gray rejected the Thanksgiving deadline to declare floated by the Post's Mike DeBonis, saying only that he'll announce his decision "within the next few weeks."

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • drez

    "When this whole thing started with Sulaimon Brown, Gray threw a press conference to deny lie (incorrectly, as it turned out) that his campaign gave money to the fringe candidate."

  • ward4forever

    Gray will have many questions to answer. Can he plausibly deny that he knew nothing about the $650,000 shadow campaign conducted on his behalf out of his own campaign office?

  • Chris hauser

    We need as many candidates as possible for mayor so as to have as much in the mix as can fit on the ballot.

    Eight would be great.

  • http://ruckoneword@aol.com Knowone

    Gray will win again if he run. He have done excellent job since he became mayor.

  • RealDC

    Gray will beat the current group of dud mayoral candidates with ease!!

  • Pingback: Rats in the city

  • knownothing

    Hi Knowone,

    Can you please define what you mean by an excellent job since he became mayor?

    Does that mean you're going to ignore what happened during the race?

  • Typical DC BS

    Amazing how many DC voters think his conduct while winning the mayor's office was acceptable. Same 30% - 40% base who thinks former Mayor Barry's conduct is acceptable. And they wonder why there's no traction for making DC a "state" (besides the idea being laughable for the PC capital of the world).

  • SEis4ME

    @knownothing, well that's a rather odd question. Someone says that the mayor has done an excellent job as Mayor and your response is to ask whether he/she is going to ignore what happened BEFORE he got in the position in which he/she credits Gray's excellence?

    Isn't that like asking whether we should ignore the Redskins' win yday because they sucked in the preseason?

    Typical, uhmm...70% of people approve of Ted Cruz...of course..they're all Tea Partiers..which tells u a lot. BTW, where is this polls u reference showing how many voters who found the way in which he won won acceptable?

  • drez

    Gray has for the most part done an okay job maintaining the status quo.
    He's benefited from the achievements of Williams and Fenty, and a resurgent National and local economy. He's not been bold, or innovative, or really done anything new. He's been mired in ethics and crony scandals.
    He's not raised the bar in any significant way.
    He can't leave soon enough for me.

  • SEis4ME

    Drez, you're such a Tea Party with your logic. Can you please cite one...just ONE example of an elected mayor, governor or even POTUS who created an entire government on his/her own and didn't build upon what their predecessors did? Obama didn't. Bloomberg didn't. Adrian Fenty surely didn't. Rhee SURELY didnt. Yet, you not surprisingly didn't suggest that Fenty benefitted from Williams' mayoralship.

    So What bold, innovative ideas for our great city do you suggest the mayor get involved in?

  • Blevins

    Drez, no need to concern yourself with nonsense. First of all, are you a tea party of one? I guess this "tea party" stuff is the new onecitidiot meme-in-training?

    Of course no mayor/ POTUS is independent of their predecessor, but of course that wasn't your argument, was it? So silly. And as you of course know, Rhee departed from her predecessor's course almost completely - hence the union outrage, although maybe that happened prior to your antagonist arriving here?

    Whatever.

  • SEis4ME

    BLEVINS, and you're just as much an idibot as Drez. What exactly do you think the point of that nutcase talking about Grays lack of progress/vision and how whatever accomplishments he's had are due to the work of his predecessors?

    Rhee most certainly did capitalize on Cliff Janey's Master Facilities Plan which is the blueprint she used to put life in what were crumbling schools. But of course you're an idibot which explains why you wouldn't know or care to remember that.

    BTW, Fenty reversal on whether a mayor should control DC schools ensured that Rhee had the ability to perform in ways none of her predecessors had the opportunity to.

    Know your history before you run out into the street and get knocked tf out.

  • Typical DC BS

    @SEis4ME: Uh, maybe you're not paying attention every couple years when Mr. Barry is re-elected with the same 30% - 40% of the vote, because his opponents aren't bright enough to run just ONE candidate against him. Same idiots in Ward 1 who run multiple candidates against Ms. Graham. The percentage of voters who don't vote for Barry and Graham is ALWAYS greater than those who do, but by splitting their votes among various opponents, will never oust Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

    In your own words, KNOW YOUR HISTORY and look at the statistics.

  • SEis4ME

    Uhm...WTF does that have to do w.ur suggestion...well lie...that the the people who vote for Barry are those who thought the way Gray won was acceptable. That was your accusation. .well lie. I only asked that you provide evidence to support your lie.

    Also, Barry...ALWAYS has an opponent..sometimes several..running against him. KNOW your history idibot

  • Blevins

    "BTW, Fenty reversal on whether a mayor should control DC schools ensured that Rhee had the ability to perform in ways none of her predecessors had the opportunity to"

    Well Fenty's, but that omission aside, I would like to thank the imbecile above who (inadvertently, I'm sure) gave an example of a mayor bringing a bold, innovative idea to bear. Cheers!

    Rather than make a federal case and specious arguments against the fact(s) that Gray has maintained the status quo (he has),has failed to innovate (he has), and has spent the entire term mired in scandal (he has), onecitidiots would do well to admit the above and accept the fact that they are ok with all of it.

  • SEis4ME

    Hey nutjob, did you see me suggest that Fenty did nothing or was marginal as Mayor? Uhmmm..no! So whats your point?

    The fact is that his "idea" was the same ine he voted against when his own predecessor tried to change the structure.

    And yes, I am perfectly fine w.a mayor maintaining the status quo if it works better for the city than disrupting it. Shouldn't we all be? It's no surprise that you (like DumRez) can't cite any innovation you believe the city lacks. So it works better for idibots like you to throw the "no innovation" charge because...well...just because.

    That's why you fools continue to suck at the nipple of the Tea Party. They too don't really know what their issue w.Obama is..beyond the fact that he exists at all.

  • noodlez

    AS IF MAINTAINING THE STATUS QUO IS A BAD THING. IT ACTUALLY IS A GOOD THING. ASK FLENTY SINCE HE COULDN'T MAINTAIN IT ALONG WITH HIS MAYORALTY.

    FOLKS ON HERE MINIMIZING GOOD THINGS AND ACCENTUATING THE BAD. GIVE IT A REST!

    FENTY AND CREW STOLE MONEY! THERE WAS A DIRECT LINK. HE CIRCUMVENTED LAW. THERE WAS A DIRECT LINK. NICKLES COVERED UP AND CLEANED UP. ENOUGH OF THE BULL SHIT!

    MAYOR GRAY HAD DUMBASSES AROUND HIM WHO OBVIOUSLY COULDN'T READ THE POLLS, TEA LEAVES OR PULSE FROM THE STREET. THAT SHIT WAS NOT NEEDED. SINCE HE HAS BEEN IN CHARGE HE HAD TO DODGE A FEW POTHOLES OUT THE GATE PUT IT'S BEEN A CADILLAC RIDE EVERY SINCE. STAND DOWN DETRACTORS. STAND DOWN.

    THIS ONECITIDIOT IS OK WITH IT!
    YOU BAMMA'S ARE THE ONE'S THAT IS GOING TO HAVE TO DEAL WITH 4 MORE YEARS OF THE STATUS QUO OR YOU CAN ALWAYS HAVE A VOLATILE ADMINISTRATION WITH BOWSER OR EVANS.

    ONE CITY.

  • Blevins

    So many trying to coin phrases, so many fails. From some of the idiocy above we can extract the below, presented for your amusement:

    you please cite one...just ONE example of an elected mayor, governor or even POTUS who didn't build upon what their predecessors did?
    - This was funny, as the poster above went on to cite an example his or herself, and then came back with this:

    Hey nutjob, did you see me suggest that Fenty did nothing or was marginal as Mayor? Uhmmm..no! So whats your point?
    - Whoa boy - we've got a live one here! Independent of what Tony might have wanted to do, he was unable to advance his position. Hence, Rhee's role was a departure from her predecessors. Like it or not, Fenty built that model in DC. Not his predecessors.

    AS IF MAINTAINING THE STATUS QUO IS A BAD THING. IT ACTUALLY IS A GOOD THING.
    - Were the US government, mayors included, to consistently maintain the status quo, life here would be much different. Think about that for a minute and listen to yourself, sir.

    MAYOR GRAY HAD DUMBASSES AROUND HIM
    - Agreed. Dumbasses who he hired. And called lifelong friends. Who is the dumbass here?

    ...A VOLATILE ADMINISTRATION WITH BOWSER OR EVANS.
    - Huh? Are constant federal investigations and guilty pleas not volatile enough for you?

    And one last one, just for giggles:

    "Also, Barry...ALWAYS has an opponent..sometimes several..running against him. KNOW your history idibot"
    - Cheers to this person for once again proving that reading comprehension was taught (wherever they are from) in grade 12...

    Thanks for playing. Stay in school. If time allows, perhaps some of us will grace you with a post or two on these "innovations" you so desperately seek, as you lack the capacity to articulate your own.

  • noodlez

    YO BLEVEE- YOU ALL OVER THE PLACE SON. SLOW DOWN!! YOU DRIVING RECKLESS. STAY IN YOUR LANE.

    I COULD HAVE SWORN FLENTY WAS AGAINST MAYOR CONTROL OF SCHOOLS BEFORE HE WAS FOR IT. CLASSIC FLIP-FLOPPER. RHEE DIDN'T DO ANYTHING BUT FIRE A BUNCH OF TEACHERS, JUKE TEST SCORES AND STATS AND CONTRIBUTED TO FLENTY'S DEMISE!

    DON'T HAVE TO LISTEN TO MYSELF I'LL TAKE THE STATUS QUO OVER A FAILED ADMIN LIKE PREVIOUS ONE ANY DAY.

    I'M SURE MAYOR DELEGATED MOST OF THE HIRING THUS THE IGNORANCE INVOLVED. SOMETIMES TRUSTED FOLK AREN'T WHO THEY PRETEND TO BE.

    EXACTLY HOW MANY IN MAYOR GRAY'S ADMINISTRATION PLEADED GUILTY? MAYOR GRAY ADMIN UNDER CONSTANT INVESTIGATION? I THOUGHT IT WAS HIS CAMPAIGN. IF I'M WRONG I STAND CORRECTED!

    SLIM YOUR WEAK ASS ATTACKS HAVE PROVEN OVER TIME TO BE JUST THAT. GOT TO GIVE YA PROPS ON THE COINED PHRASE THOUGH. I'M SURE THAT WILL GO DOWN IN WCP LORE.

    THE ONE CITY TRAIN STILL ON SCHEDULE.

  • SEis4ME

    My, My, My!

    You gotta lol at the consistent level of idiocy in your responses. It explains why you decided to include my quote but CONVENIENTLY left the tie that binds it all together. What I actually wrote was, Can you please cite one...just ONE example of an elected mayor, governor or even POTUS who CREATED AN ENTIRE GOV’T ON HIS/HER OWN and didn't build upon what their predecessors did

    THAT is the entire quote in context. I understand why you excluded the part in ALL caps because it made it impossible to refute what I said while at the same time declaring that the point of quote was something other than what was clearly expressed.

    That said, you’ve yet to show any of us here where I stated that a mayor is never able to advance his own special projects. You’ve also yet to show where Fenty (or Rhee for that matter) created an ENTIRE GOV’T on their own. After making such a fool of yourself I know it’s painful to acknowledge, BUT, having a school chancellor report to the mayor is NOT an example of creating a gov’t. Again, read the ENTIRE quote.

    And about this last little gem, “Cheers to this person for once again proving that reading comprehension was taught (wherever they are from) in grade 12...”

    Well unless you’re reading on a different board, your Tea Party bosom buddy suggested that none of Gray’s opponents are smart enough to find a candidate to run against him. I factually stated that he’s always had “opponents” run against him. Surely you’re not suggesting that supporters of a candidate find opponents to run against their guy/gal? Although it would be consistent w/your logic here..its actually rather silly and counterintuitive.

  • Blevins

    Well unless you’re reading on a different board, your Tea Party bosom buddy suggested that none of Gray’s opponents are smart enough to find a candidate to run against him.

    Read what you wrote above again. Read post #13. Take your time. Read what you wrote above, again. Then read post #13, yet again. What's different about these two things? C'mon, you can do it.

    And btw: Washington.

  • Blevins

    Well unless you’re reading on a different board, your Tea Party bosom buddy suggested that none of Gray’s opponents are smart enough to find a candidate to run against him.

    Read what you wrote above again. Read post #13. Take your time. Read what you wrote above, again. Then read post #13, yet again. What's different about these two things? C'mon, you can do it.

    And btw: Washington.....

  • Drez

    noodlez I might be able to accept that Gray mistakenly surrounded himself with and staffed his campaign with a few bad actors, but...
    1) The people who have pled guilty are not strangers to Gray. They were his close friends and coworkers for years.
    2) No candidate under the sun can possibly be unaware that they have 30% more money at the time of the election (the all important primary) than they have raised.
    3) The legal campaign and the shadow campaign shared the same building and the same staff.

    Gray may say he was too busy running the council to know what was going on. But given that he is by all accounts a smart and details kind of guy, that explanation is entirely implausible and remarkably self-serving. Just like his hiring and mistakenly trusting the team he put together to do this in the first place.
    It's bullshit.

  • Blevins

    Well unless you’re reading on a different board, your Tea Party bosom buddy suggested that none of Gray’s opponents are smart enough to find a candidate to run against him

    HA HA HA HA. Since I'm in moderation, I'll repeat:

    Read the above. Several times if necessary. Then go back and read number 13. Twice, if it will help. Now please read number 14. Again, twice if it will help. Take your time. Now read the above quote again. Notice anything?

    As I said, thanks for playing and stay in school.

  • SEis4ME

    Blevins, I know..I know you couldn't refute anything I said about creating a gov't from scratch. You clearly didn't want to acknowledge how you cherry picked from my quote and it's kewl. So you go back to discussing undisputed facts about Barry and those who've run against him?

    As you can see, I don't have to be indirect. I can DIRECTLY reference what you've said here and offer my take on why I might disagree. If you would rather ask readers to go back and reference an earlier post and decide it unnecessary to explain your point, then that's on you.

    because his opponents aren't bright enough to run just ONE candidate against him.

    My point about Barry still stands. That is (again), unless you're telling me that he's run unopposed.

  • Blevins

    Creating an "entire government" from scratch is a strawman so silly that it defies a response. But if I must play along - Washington (POTUS). And the ancient greeks (y'know, from a history class - you've taken those, right?). A more rational, or analytical approach would be to ask which mayors or POTUS have made a dramatic break from the status quo, or directly reversed the course of their predecessors. But, as we know, analysis isn't your thing.

    I parsed your quote in an attempt to make any of which you speak of make sense.

    And if you still don't understand what was funny, or what I was discussing re: your posts in 13 and 14 as compared to the nonsense in 20, then I can't help you. I tried though. Maybe consider a GED?

    Continuing to respond is futile, so I won't.

  • noodlez

    @DOWNTOWN-I'LL GIVE YOU THAT #21 WITH THIS CAVEAT.
    HOW BEST TO HIDE SHADY DEALING THAN TO COMMINGLE?

    ONCE SHADOW WAS ESTABLISHED MAYOR GRAY WAS DAMNED IF HE DO AND DAMNED IF HE DON'T. HIS LOYALTY RUNS DEEP YOU CAN'T FAULT A MAN FOR THAT!

    THE D.C. CODE AS I KNOW IT GROWING UP IN MY BEAUTIFUL NEIGHBORHOOD IS YOU DON'T TELL EVEN IF YOU KNOW WHO DID IT AS LONG AS YOU DIDN'T KILL ANYONE THEN SO BE IT! TRUST ME EVERYONE KNEW WHO DID THE CRIMES IN MY NECK OF THE WOODS IT WASN'T A SECRET AMONG US ONLY TO THOSE WHO DIDN'T COUNT. DOES THAT MAKE US CULPABLE??? ALSO I PITIED THE FOOL WHO COULD'T HOLD THEIR WATER.

    MAYOR GRAY THE TRUE WASHINGTONIAN IS BEHOLDEN TO THE D.C. CODE. HOW MANY FOLK YOU KNOW DID SOMETHING WRONG AND/OR AGAINST THE LAW AND TO THIS DAY YOU HAVEN'T SAID A WORD TO ANYONE?

    ONE CITY THAT'S HOW WE ROLL.

  • noodlez

    @DOWNTOWN-I'LL GIVE YOU THAT #21 WITH THIS CAVEAT.
    HOW BEST TO HIDE SHADY DEALING THAN TO COMMINGLE?

    ONCE SHADOW WAS ESTABLISHED MAYOR GRAY WAS DAMNED IF HE DO AND DAMNED IF HE DON'T. HIS LOYALTY RUNS DEEP YOU CAN'Y FAULT A MAN FOR THAT!

    THE D.C. CODE AS I KNOW IT GROWING UP IN MY BEAUTIFUL NEIGHBORHOOD IS YOU DON'T TELL EVEN IF YOU KNOW WHO DID IT AS LONG AS YOU DIDN'T KILL ANYONE THEN SO BE IT! TRUST ME EVERYONE KNEW WHO DID THE CRIMES IN MY NECK OF THE WOODS IT WASN'T A SECRET AMONG US ONLY TO THOSE WHO DIDN'T COUNT. DOES THAT MAKE US CULPABLE??? ALSO I PITIED THE FOOL WHO COULD'T HOLD THEIR WATER.

    MAYOR GRAY THE TRUE WASHINGTONIAN IS BEHOLDEN TO THE D.C. CODE. HOW MANY FOLK YOU KNOW DID SOMETHING WRONG AND/OR AGAINST THE LAW AND TO THIS DAY YOU HAVEN'T SAID A WORD TO ANYONE?

    ONE CITY THAT'S HOW WE ROLL.

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