Fenty: My Personality Not the Issue

Mayor Says Voters Want to Know What He's Done

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    Does it matter what kind of personality the mayor has, or does it just matter what gets done?

    That seems to be shaping up as a campaign issue between Mayor Adrian Fenty and D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray.

    Last week on the Kojo Nnamdi "Politics Hour" on WAMU, Gray was busy ticking off attibutes of his character when he added, "maturity." We asked him if that meant Fenty was "immature" and whether personality is an issue in the election, Gray said, "yeah."

    Well, on the Kojo show today, Fenty was having none of it. The first question Fenty was asked was whether he had revealed his true personality or whether he had changed personalities. He was asked why some people refer to him as a "jerk."

    The unflappable mayor said people could ask him about his personality, but he said voters are asking about their neighborhoods and communities and school reform and other significant public policy issues.

    While many of the 13 council members complain the mayor has been dismissive of them, Fenty clearly is being more accomodating at groundbreakings and other events by letting the council members speak. He even participated with Gray at a couple of public events this week.

    The mayor said there is "natural tension" between the council and the executive branch of the mayor, and that will continue, but he said there is no personal animosity.

    The mayor did acknowledge criticism separately from D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton that Fenty had not had a private meeting with her since his election.  Fenty said he'd take "100 percent of the blame" for that and do something about it.