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For a guy who became mayor by capitalizing on his predecessor’s communications blunders, Vince Gray sure had a tough time sending a message in 2011. From vacillating on what he thought about questionable political hires to having to fire his new image guru because she voted in D.C. while living in Maryland, Gray had a year Adrian Fenty might have recognized. Both mayors let little self-inflicted political problems grow so large they threatened to drown out their message. It’s not too late for Gray to relearn the lesson of 2010’s election: In politics, politicking matters.