What Foxx’s promotion means for him, the White House and Charlotte

CHARLOTTE — When Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx said that he would not run for the third term he was almost guaranteed to win easily, most folks in town figured something big was in his future. The explanation everyone expected officially came on Monday when President Obama announced Foxx, a Democrat, was his choice to join his second-term cabinet as Secretary of Transportation. The White House praised Foxx’s dealing with federal, state, regional and local transportation issues.

Foxx, who turns 42 on Tuesday, is Charlotte second African American mayor, the city’s youngest when he was first elected in 2009. No one in the region is surprised. When the FBI starts vetting you, it’s pretty hard to keep it a secret, especially in a Southern city that can be more like a small town.

In North Carolina, a civilized gun debate fails to change minds

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – In a mostly blue city in a mostly red state, a crowd of several hundred filled a theater for a community conversation called “Voices in the Gun Debate.” It was cordial, which is more than you can say for much of the national dialogue that has NRA leadership and gun control advocates giving little ground in language or policy. But at evening’s end, there weren’t many conversions, either.

DNC Helped Recapture Charlotte’s Magic

Mayor Anthony Foxx is exhausted, but in a good way, just like his city. Though last week’s Democratic National Convention didn’t run exactly as planned — turns out neither party is great at forecasting the weather — the sudden storms that periodically pummeled Charlotte, N.C., didn’t dampen the spirit of the celebration heading into a tough November political race. After Democrats chose Charlotte, there were questions about the city’s ability to pull off such a major event.

At the time, Foxx, 41, knew that the expected 35,000 visitors – national and international leaders, media and delegates — would be judging him as well. Charlotte’s second African-American mayor, who touted his city as the perfect pick, has been tagged as a rising political star. Sitting in an empty council chamber in the government center, Foxx was tired when he spoke with The Root on a recent Friday afternoon about his own future and the November chances of the president and friend he supports. That morning Foxx; his wife, Samara; and their two children, Hillary and Zachary, had said their goodbyes and posed for pictures at the North Carolina Air National Guard Base near Charlotte Douglas International Airport before President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama departed on Air Force One.