D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser launched a mayoral bid Saturday, kicking off a year-long Democratic primary campaign that is likely to center on the pace of progress in city government, the ethics of elected officials and the direction of the city’s remarkable growth.
Bowser made her announcement in front of her childhood home in North Michigan Park, a working-class Northeast neighborhood of brick duplexes and modest detached homes that have housed working-class, mostly African American Washingtonians for generations.
Her remarks Saturday and in an interview with The Washington Post indicate that the Ward 4 Democrat is designing her campaign to exploit Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s perceived weaknesses — his deliberate bearing and the federal investigation into his 2010 campaign.
“Will you go the distance with me?” Bowser, 40, asked a cheering crowd of more than 100 people Saturday. “It won’t be easy, but we need a change.”
She did not mention Gray directly but said, “Corruption has robbed us of our focus, our momentum, our need to think big and act swiftly.”