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Former Rep. Floyd Flake rallies Fenty supporters

Washington Post Editors

D.C .Mayor Adrian M. Fenty campaigned in Northeast Washington Thursday night where a New York City preacher and former congressman blasted the Washington Teachers' Union and chastised residents for not standing by Fenty, who he said has been forced to make tough decisions.

Rev. Floyd Flake, who spent a decade in congress before returning to his 25,000 member congregation in Queens in the late 1990s, headlined a Fenty rally at the Holy Comforter Missionary Baptist Church.

"Somebody has to step up," said Flake, adding that "one of the biggest barriers" to education reform is the agenda of the union. "If it were their children, they would want them to have the best education."

He spoke to the audience of about 100 of the virtues of residents and officials charting their own future, especially as it relates to gentrification, a concern among some D.C. residents who fear they might be priced out of the city.

"I support this mayor because I believe in this moment in history he is the only one that gives you some hope of being able to have a community that would have some hope, that would look like us, still living here in the next generation," Flake said. "...He is the one who has the foresight to see the future, rather than holding on to the past."

Northwest resident Delores Freeman said city residents don't give Fenty enough credit. She and several other Northwest residents attended the rally wearing Fenty T-shirts.
A row of Northwest residents wearing Fenty T-shirts.

"He has done a lot for the city and people should give him the credit that he deserves," said Freeman, a retired federal worker.

Rev. Steve Young, the church's pastor, read from a pamphlet listing seven of Fenty's accomplishments -- including recreation centers and new libraries. "Seven is a sign of completion," Young said.

Fenty spoke at the event and highlighted some of his administration's projects in Northeast Washington, including the construction of a new H.D. Woodson High School and the opening of the new Deanwood Public Library and Recreation Center.

"Professionally, what drives me is to make sure that our city, the one we all live on, is a beacon of excellence where people from around the country can say that that is our nation's capital, where they get things done," Fenty said.

The event was billed as a faith rally for Fenty, and four other preachers attended. One preacher, Rev. Michael Bell, came and left with Flake and two ministers sat in the audience, but did not speak.

Flake, who serves on the board of a New York charter school, highlighted the improvement in city's education system. And he said too much has been made of the firing of some D.C. teachers.

"The best change agent for Washington D.C. sits in this room," he said, referring to Fenty.

-- Hamil R. Harris

By Hamil R. Harris  |  August 27, 2010; 10:25 AM ET
Categories:  2010 District Election  
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More people out of state who don't live in dc speaking up for Adrian Fenty. Please. I don't believe those of us who live in dc need to be "educated" about Fenty by people who don't live here. Looks like they've got too much time on their hands or got called in by a friend in need. I hope it doesn't work. They can have him.

Posted by: mjvdc | August 27, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

This was illegal. Churches cannot endorse particular candidates for public office. The IRS should revoke the church's non profit status.

Posted by: peteyamama1 | August 27, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Rev, Flake. Who care what you say. Go back to NY and mind your own business. You can't even vote here. The residents will vote for the person that they want for mayor of DC.

I remember when `Steve Young sold and used drugs.

Birds of a feather flock together.

Posted by: samvped205 | August 27, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Rev.Flakei admire you but you do not know what you are talking about.Fenty is not the one for DC. What are you going to say when he is indicted for corruption?

Posted by: diahhna | August 27, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I've been told, Mayor Fenty is alleged to be an Atheist and he doesn't belong to a church. Why is King Fenty attending a rally in a church. Floyd Flake doesn't live or vote in the District. Who cares what this Flake have to say. LOL

Posted by: Ward4DC | August 27, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Why is NY so interested in DC local politics? They don't have a dog in this hunt. They don't pay taxes and clearly don't know what they are talking about.

The projects they speak of, are projects of the Williams Administration.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | August 27, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

rev. young has a stake in this fight.fenty crew has been in negotiations with the good rev. development projects in ward 7 the last year. by his crew i mean,skinner,omar,and i can name more but u should get the picture. just wanted 2 put my 2 cents in. have a good day...

Posted by: alleyes | August 27, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

"facts are non negotiable"....
Fenty has brought the district in to the 21st century...

Posted by: pdv1 | August 27, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Alright! Rally the 100 people in attendance...sounds like a ground swell of support for Fenty.

Posted by: winston61 | August 27, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Wow... so many thing I could say.

1. Whens the last time Fenty went to Church? Maybe you ministers are preaching to the wrong ones here. The fact that you let him use your religion for his personal goals stings.

2. the church's pastor, read from a pamphlet listing seven of Fenty's accomplishments -- including recreation centers and new libraries. "Seven is a sign of completion," Young said.

Well then hes done right? Lol

3. He spoke to the audience of about 100 of the virtues of residents and officials charting their own future, especially as it relates to gentrification, a concern among some D.C. residents who fear they might be priced out of the city.

Really? Come on now, we must be talking about two different people. How are we going to stay in the city if we all are getting fired? Duh!!!

4. From New York?

AGAIN?!?!?! Is there not any one influential person FROM DC who can speak about the Mayor? MUST all of his saviors come from out of town? Wow!

Posted by: tformation1 | August 27, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

"facts are non negotiable"....

MAYOR ANTHONY WILLIAMS has brought the district in to the 21st century...

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | August 27, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the quote from the church's pastor that seven is a sign of completion. So Fenty's work is complete and it's time for him to go.

Posted by: UrbanDweller | August 27, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Interesting.... the "event" was held in Ward 7, but, no mention of any fenty supporters who actually live in Ward 7.

Maybe that's why they had to ship in folks from NW?

I believe the Gray Campaign has already conceded the NY vote to fenty.... so they, can all just come on back vote for him on Sept 14th. Wait a minute... that's right, New Yorkers cant vote in DC!

Oops, on to Plan D! Understand Jersey has a lot of potential voters with time on their hands..... LOLLLLLLLL

Posted by: Ward7Resident | August 27, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Who is this man? he don't live in Washington. D.C. and why do we care what he have to say.Talk to me if you live in DC and you know fenty what he have done in this city if you not white he have done nothing so when we vote him out of office then he can go to NEW York and you and give him a job

Posted by: ruckoneword | August 27, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

peteyamama1 is correct. This was illegal and indeed this church's tax exempt status should be revoked immediately.

Fenty is a desperate man. I suggest he concede his loss to Gray and spend the next 4 years reflecting on his mistakes and getting some therapy from a qualified professional. After that, he may be ready to run again.

Posted by: UrbanDweller | August 27, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

Floyd Flake is yet another New Yorker imported to assist Fenty. His friendship with Fenty is a perfect example of how birds of a feather flock together.

Just Google "Floyd Flake" and you will get a sense that Fenty is truly trying to sit at the master's knee for lessons on cronyism. Here is a short blurb from the NYTimes that appeared on June 18, 2010:

The Rev. Floyd Flake, a former United States representative, is the head of the Greater Allen African Methodist Episcopal Cathedral in Queens and one of New York's most influential and politically savvy black pastors. Mr. Flake has remained a political force as the church has expanded under his leadership to some 20,000 parishioners and an annual budget, including subsidiaries, of $34 million, according to its Internet site.

His endorsements, never assured based on political party, are valued for his perceived influence over his parishioners and in the wider African-American community, and he has backed Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in his last two campaigns.

Mr. Flake's finances have become a matter of public interest. In 2010, he emerged as a minor partner in a bid to operate a casino at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens. Mr. Flake, with a stake of less than 1 percent, said he was motivated by the real estate development potential, but he withdrew just as all investors were required to disclose their financial holdings. The bids were later thrown out amid allegations of political favoritism, and the bidding process is now the subject of a state investigation.

In June, an article in The New York Times detailed the church's sale in 2006 of a 300-unit apartment complex for the elderly in southeastern Queens. The church sold the project for $14 million to a for-profit partnership that included Mr. Flake, the Rev. Edwin C. Reed, who was then the church's former chief financial officer, and two real estate developers, Peter G. Florey and Leonard T. D'Amico.

Posted by: sheridaw | August 27, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

I overheard a conversation between 2 taxi drivers today in which they mentioned how this is city is divided by Fenty. They also said that soon Fenty will be out and they will start making money again.

That is a perfect example of why is hard to believe that Gray will be able to make any tough decisions. He will spend his entire Mayoral term entertaning unions, boards, and negotiating with taxi drivers, fired teachers, fired child care workers...
Gray needs to understand that the more alliances he makes with boards, union workers and all kinds of loss causes, the less atractive he becomes for many hard working residents.

Posted by: goingbacktothepast | August 27, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Fenty is desperate. Last year this time, he was pretty smug in believing that his re-election was certain. It's been less than a year since Gray has established his official candidacy and the fact that he is technically leading Fenty in the mayoral race SPEAKS VOLUMES. Fenty KNOWS his time is up and courting NY politicians for endorsements is synonymous to him basically stating that he doesn't think DC is capable of home rule. To me home rule would mean having the ability to convince DC residents that he is the best candidate for the job. Unfortunately, Fenty can't do that and to continue attempting to garner support from outside politicians is actually insulting and further highlights his arrogance and ineptness. Mighty funny you don't hear President Barak Obama (who happens to live in DC) endorsing a mayoral candidate -not appropriate, right ? Just like it's not appropriate to have Bloomberg nor Flake endorsing Fenty - they don't live here. Why do they care ? Fenty is starting to pull all of these unconventional tricks (i.e., copyright violated rap videos, out of town endorsements, election registration gimmicks, etc.) because he is desperate because HE KNOWS his time is up.

For the race to be even this close, whereas Fenty is claiming to have accomplished so much, tells us all that Fenty is in fact, the loser.

Posted by: | August 27, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

Flake is well-named.

The name would fit Adrian, too....Adrian Flake....tell me that doesn't fit Hizzoner.

Posted by: smartheart | August 27, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

Mayor Fenty is not a member of no organized religion in the District of Columbia. He does not believed in the higher power or the gospal. I hope Mayor Fenty and his associates will follow Rev. Flake and Mr. Bloomberg back to New York City. I am sure there is a place for Fenty in the Bloomberg Administration. LASTLY please leave the NYC hustlers out of DC affairs. It appears that there is a secret deal in the works with Bloomberg, Flake, Moten, Skinner, Bell, Young, Blue Sky Construction et al. Loose Lips.

Posted by: dgrowe1 | August 28, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

The race "Who's the best!"

Posted by: cansee4u | August 28, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

the rev Flake has a stake in this mayor,he is a vast supporter on charter schools. and some of his church members are running the high school in the city. these are the first contractor that ms Rhee bought in 2 take over the cities high and jr high school,remember mayor Bloomberg speach here was about the schools,Flake and his crew is all over this charter school deal in NY. just a little something 2 think about. have a nice day...

Posted by: alleyes | August 29, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

FLAKE OFF and go back to New York

Posted by: candycane1 | August 29, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

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