From what I’ve read and observed from Gray over the past few years, much of Gray’s criticism is based on style and less on policy substance. A lot of sentiment here is that Fenty governs as a competent, but arrogant Mayor who treats the Council as a fiefdom, something with which I agree (see here for more). Or, as the DCist blog put it, “Poll Shows Fenty’s Personality Sucks, But Not His Policies“. The narrative the traditional media will probably beat is that that Gray has an opportunity to appeal to African-Americans- one poll had Fenty at 22% approval in that community, and Gray represented Ward 7, a 97% African-American ward on the east side of the Anacostia River, with some of the highest rates of poverty in the city. January’s WaPo poll showed Gray leading Fenty by thirty points among African-American registered Democrats in a matchup. What will really be interesting to me is how the candidates talk on the stump about their support for the city’s new law legalizing same-sex marriage equality.
The problem with Fenty isn’t that he is too brash, the problem with Fenty is that he has zero respect for the law.
You would think that someone might look at Fenty’s dismal approval ratings with black voters and intuit that something was very wrong. You would be mistaken.
The problem with Fenty is his illegal disaster capitalism maladministration that is trashing DC’s already troubled school system, his cuts to DC’s childcare program, giving away public property to his cronies, and abuse of the city’s contracting laws.
If Fenty prevails it will be because many people, especially white voters, willfully ignore the obvious signs of corruption.