CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx announced this morning that he will not seek reelection this year. The announcement comes after some speculation that Foxx is a possible pick to become President Barack Obama’s new transportation secretary.
Foxx made his announcement to WSOC-TV’s Blair Miller, in an interview late last night at the government center.
“As I said, when I came into this office, I had a very clear idea on where I wanted to push the city towards and we’ve made a good bit of the way there,” Foxx told Miller. Foxx’s full interview will be broadcast on the news station this evening.
An official statement from Foxx’s office was released this morning.
“My grandfather often paraphrased the book of Ecclesiastes when he said, ‘There is a season for everything under the sun,’” Foxx’s statement reads. “I remember his words as I announce today my decision not to run for reelection.”
His statement also describes his political career, the objectives he has accomplished and the issues still facing the city, including several items he says will be accomplished over the next 60-90 days. Among them are questions over ownership of the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, Carolina Panthers stadium upgrade incentives, the long-stalled Capital Improvement Plan and efforts toward completing the city’s 2030 transit plan, including a streetcar system.
Foxx was first elected to City Council in 2005, where he served until his election as mayor in 2009. He was the first Democratic mayor in over 20 years, the youngest Charlotte mayor and the city’s second African-American mayor.
Foxx’s LGBT history
The mayor also made several historic firsts with the LGBT community, becoming the first sitting mayor to address LGBT constituents in a public forum at the LGBT Community Center of Charlotte in December 2010. He was also the first mayor to offer regular welcome letters to LGBT events in the city.
He’s been seen as largely supportive of a variety of local LGBT issues. He was in favor of personnel policy changes protecting LGBT workers, instituted by former City Manager Curt Walton in April 2010 and December 2012. The mayor also supported the addition of domestic partner benefits to the city’s budget in June 2012.
Foxx also spoke out against Amendment One, the state constitutional amendment banning recognition of same-sex marriages passed by voters in May 2012.
Yet, Foxx has not been outspoken on other LGBT issues. He offered no comment on the issue of marriage equality last week during the historic U.S. Supreme Court cases on California’s Proposition 8 and the federal Defense of Marriage Act. And, he has not been a proponent of other local changes that would require the vote of City Council, including the addition of LGBT protections in the city’s Commercial Non-Discrimination Ordinance. The last time the city council voted on a stand-alone LGBT measure was in November 1992, when it defeated an inclusive public accommodations measure.