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Posted at 11:34 AM ET, 09/23/2010

Holder brings official support from White House

Attorney General Eric C. Holder arrived at the John A. Wilson Building at 11 a.m. Thursday to give D.C. Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray official "congratulations" and support from the Obama administration after his win in last week's Democratic mayoral primary.

"You're looking good, man," Holder said when he saw Gray in the lobby of city hall.

Holder and Gray then spoke to reporters shortly before they went into the chairman's office for a closed-door meeting.

"I want to congratulate our presumptive mayor and talk about how the Obama administration is committed to making sure we do all we can with regard to public safety and continue what I think is a good relationship between the administration and the city government," Holder said.

Holder said he will be asking Gray what he wants President Obama to be "focusing on" and "what things specifically he wants the Justice Department of focus on."

In his campaign against Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D), Gray often spoke about renewing the push for voting rights or statehood for the District. But Holder largely avoided questions from reporters about Obama's views on those issues.

After his victory in last Tuesday's Democratic primary, Gray also fielded a congratulatory phone call from senior White House adviser Valerie B. Jarrett.

Gray advisers say the chairman never received a call from Obama, as some would have expected. But Holder said, "It's been a relatively short period of time between now and when the primary occurred."

"I'm here as a representative of the administration to convey our congratulations and our continued support," Holder said. He spent about 20 minutes with Gray before leaving.

The meeting is the latest in a series of get-togethers Gray is holding after last week's election. On Wednesday, Gray and Fenty met for about 35 minutes to begin laying the groundwork for the expected transition. Later today, Gray plans to meet with Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee.

By  |  11:34 AM ET, 09/23/2010

Categories:  2010 District Election, 2010 District Election, 2010 District Election, 2010 District Election, 2010 District Election

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