Mayors try to put partisan politics aside during national conference


WASHINGTON (WCMH) — The United States Conference of Mayors winter meeting is happening this week in our nation’s capitol.

As partisan gridlock grips Washington D.C., mayors from nearly 300 cities gathering there say they are working above politics. Most say the work isn’t about who’s red or blue, but about what works.

“We all care about our city, and we all care about our community, and we’re willing to put our ideology aside to do what is best for our community,” said Grand Rapids, Michigan Mayor Rosalynn Bliss.

Yet, at the very moment she said that, just a few blocks away, a deeply divided Senate argued over removing the President from office.

“It is interesting to be in this place where there is so much divisiveness and so much partisanship,” said Bliss.

At the Mayor’s Conference, the chatter is not about the President, but about what one another is doing in their cities.

“Well as a famous mayor said, there’s no Democratic or Republican way to plow snow or fill potholes,” said Mayor Jim Brainard of Carmel, Indiana.

The mayors gathered say tough issues like affordable housing, gun violence, the census and aging infrastructure are proof they have a lot in common.

“The effort to really invest in our water system isn’t a partisan issue, we just long for action,” said Dayton, Ohio mayor Nan Whaley.

They say the goals are simple. Talk up what works, warn about what doesn’t, and listen.

“We want to be here so that we can kind of talk to the powers that be to explain the needs that we have. and it doesn’t matter if the powers that be are democrat or republican, we’re still pushing them to help our cities,” said Lansing, Michigan Mayor Andy Schor.

“We’re focused on getting things done for our community, not on partisan politics,” said Brainard.

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