First David Catania, now Mary Cheh.
Two members of the D.C. Council called on Mayor Vince Gray to resign today, after federal prosecutors laid out details of the shadow campaign allegedly funded by city contractor Jeff Thompson that helped him win the 2010 election. Catania, who’s clashed with Gray frequently, wasn’t much of a surprise. Cheh, who endorsed Gray enthusiastically in 2010 over incumbent Adrian Fenty—even though Fenty was far more popular among her upper Northwest Ward 3 constituents—was.
“Whether or not he knew of the massive election fraud that was taking place in his name, he is responsible for it,” Cheh said in a statement. “I believe that he would do a great public service if he would step aside now.”
Meanwhile, two senior aides to Gray’s official campaign, Mo Elleithee and Steve McMahon, wrote an op/ed for the Washington Post that calls the shadow campaign a “betrayal.” Some excerpts:
For more than a year, we’ve watched — first with disbelief, then sadness and anger, and now, disgust — as revelations about an illegal shadow campaign in the District’s 2010 mayoral race have dominated headlines and contributed to a widening trust gap between city leaders and residents.
This was not at all what we signed up for. …
The shadow campaign was at its core a betrayal. It was a betrayal of everything our campaign stood for. It was a betrayal of the candidate by some people he trusted. And it was a betrayal of the voters who put their trust in our promise to change the way local government conducted business.
And that may be the biggest crime of all.
Update, 6:44 p.m. Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser has now called on Gray to resign, as well.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery