It’s taken Vince Gray months and months to decide whether to run for re-election. But it only took seconds for Chuck Thies—-local political consultant, commentator, and prolific Twitter provocateur—-to decide whether he would manage the campaign.

“I told him that I am a soldier in his army,” says Thies, who learned of Gray’s plans yesterday.

As for the still-ongoing investigation into Gray’s 2010 campaign, Thies, who was in the running to manage that campaign as well, reiterated Gray’s position that the mayor did nothing wrong. Still, Thies says he’ll make sure that whatever campaign staff is brought on—-Thies says he doesn’t know yet who the campaign chairperson and treasurer will be—-will be well-versed in Hatch Act rules about separating governing from campaigning. “We understand that this will be a highly scrutinized campaign,” says Thies.

Despite working for Gray, Thies offered some unsolicited advice for the mayor’s many rivals. LL’s sincerely not sure how to take it, but here goes. “Campaigns are about the future, they’re not about the past,” Thies says. “This  campaign is about the future.”

While Gray said in an email to supporters today that his formal launch wouldn’t come until January, Thies says he’ll be busy this month building the campaign’s infrastructure and gathering the required 2,000 signatures due by Jan. 2. “Not a bad place to be—-the best campaign manager and the best candidate in town,” Thies says.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery