The United States Conference of Mayors has set itself up as a counterweight to President Donald Trump on issues ranging from Trump’s decision to abandon the Paris Accord to military spending.
Last weekend’s resolutions against military spending were especially interesting, with the Conference issuing resolutions “calling for hearings on real city budgets needed and the taxes our cities send to the federal military budget” and “opposition to military spending.”
We asked Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry for his thoughts on the matter, and the response proved to be more illuminating than the resolutions.
“Mayor Curry is not a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. He maintains his support of the President’s commitment to keeping America safe,”said Marsha Oliver, Director of Public Affairs for the Mayor’s Office.
For those watching closely, this is a stunning development, with Curry being the most prominent big-city mayor to exempt himself from the mayoral group.
Apparently, that exemption had happened some months back, though information was not disseminated about it, despite questions about differences between Curry’s positions and the conference.
On Monday afternoon, Curry explained the reasons for leaving the group, which happened in late 2016 or early 2017, he said.
Curry wanted to know if the Mayor’s Office had paid the invoice, and it had not — so given the Conference’s political positions and lack of value add for his office, he didn’t think that membership was a “good use of taxpayer dollars.”