You are hereTalking Points Memo: DC Mayor Rejects Concept Of Issa Probe, But Pledges To Cooperate

Talking Points Memo: DC Mayor Rejects Concept Of Issa Probe, But Pledges To Cooperate


March 18, 2011- House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chair Darrell Issa (R-CA) has pledged to dig deep into the scandal-plagued Washington D.C. government. The already embattled new mayor of the city, Vincent Gray, says he doubts much will come of Issa's sniffing around. Still, if Issa wants to spend his time on D.C., Gray says, the mayor's office will help him.

Yesterday, Issa announced his plan to add another investigative body to the several already looking into charges that Gray promised a job to and paid off a fringe candidate in last year's Democratic mayoral primary. The candidate, Sulaimon Brown, received less than 300 votes in the election that saw Gray oust incumbent Adrian Fenty by a wide margin. But Brown was known for his early and unending barrage of attacks on Fenty in candidate forums, which Brown later said drew him attention from the Gray camp. Brown says team Gray paid him to stay in the race, and then rewarded him with a six-figure job in the District government once Gray won. Gray denies all of it, and says all he did was help Brown get a job interview.

The tale has fomented frustration with Gray in the city and has led to formal investigations by the city campaign finance office, U.S. Attorney and the FBI. Gray has promised to cooperate with all of them, just as he has with Issa's. But the mayor also seems to be using the occasion of the Issa probe to turn attention away from his scandals and back toward a conversation D.C. loves to have: how much Congressional oversight is too much?

"Mayor Gray believes that there are sufficient investigative bodies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, addressing and responding to Mr. Brown's allegations," reads a statement released by the mayor's office today. "Congressional involvement is not likely to illuminate any additional issues or information."

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