Vincent Gray’s big decision

October 15, 2013

Vincent Gray has a roughly a month left to decide whether to run for a second term. (Katherine Frey/The Washington Post)

It’s been a great month for Mayor Vincent C. Gray: He succeeded in killing a “living wage” bill that threatened his bid to lure Wal-Mart to the city, he stepped onto a national media stage following last month’s Navy Yard rampage, and the shutdown has given him a perfect platform to raise awareness of his favorite issue: the District’s subservient relationship to Congress. But, and it’s a capital-B but: He still has not announced, or seemingly made any plans at all, for pursuing a second term. Only two months ago, his old friend and political hand Vernon Hawkins pleaded guilty to a federal charge connected to Gray’s 2010 campaign, and a grand jury continues to review evidence in the case. Meanwhile, the declared mayoral candidates have nearly $2 million combined, and other candidates are ready to jump in. And ballot petition pickup day is less than a month away.

In other news:

In the course of revamping vending regulations, the D.C. Council quietly repealed anti-ticket-scalping laws (WTTG-TVWJLA-TV)

Big Chair Coffee, the cafe that was supposed to save Anacostia, is closed (Post)

The beat goes for D.C. government as city leaders look to tap more reserve money (DofDWaTimesWAMU-FM)

Wal-Mart says 11,000 people have applied for 1,800 jobs at its first D.C. stores (Housing Complex)

More than 2,000 people have applied for 600 jobs at the new Marriott Marquis (Capital Business)

Barack Obama heads up 14th Street, makes some sandwiches (City Desk)

Forty percent of mayoral campaign money raised so far is from outside D.C. (WAMU-FM)

More on the downballot campaign finance reports (Loose Lips)

During first shutdown week, hotel business was down 9 percent vs. last year (Housing Complex)

DDOT is finally mailing out new visitor parking passes (WTOP)

The case for increasing TANF payouts (DCFPI)

With Medicaid business secure, AmeriHealth Caritas enters the Medicare market (WBJ)

Restaurant worker shot on Spring Road during Sunday night robbery attempt (WJLA-TVWTTG-TV)

Two shot in Benning Road parking lot Monday evening (PostWRC-TV)

Eleanor Holmes Norton, Donna Edwards co-sponsor House bill to force Redskins name change (WTOP)

Could Wilson High students be the real ones with the real power to change the name? (TNR)

Marion Barry thinks the Redskins are cursed: “Man, change the name already!” (@marionbarryjr)

Public ice rink planned for Shaw Middle School campus (Housing Complex)

Why Cool “Disco” Dan became a legend: “It wasn’t just quantity — it was quality too” (Village Voice)

Save some birds: turn out the lights (Post column)

Mike DeBonis covers local politics and government for The Washington Post. He also writes a blog and a political analysis column that runs on Fridays.
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Mike DeBonis · October 14, 2013