LA Mayor Visits Charlotte To Prep For 2012 DNC
DNCC CEO Steve Kerrigan,LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx. Photo: Julie Rose Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa spent 24 hours in Charlotte this week preparing for the 2012 Democratic National Convention, which he chairs. In addition to visiting various convention meeting sites, Villaraigosa took note of the upcoming vote on amending North Carolina's constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage. As chairman of the convention, Villaraigosa will oversee adoption of the Democratic Party's national platform and says he'd like it to include a plank supporting gay marriage. "Yes, I've made that pretty clear, I think," said Villaraigosa during a press conference at the Charlotte Convention Center. "But just as I respect the will of the voters of this state and have my own views, I also respect the delegates and theirs - and remember, we're a party of a big tent." In 2008, President Barack Obama opposed same-sex marriage, but says his views are "evolving." He recently issued a statement in opposition to Amendment One, even though the president doesn't typically take a stance on state ballot issues. Villaraigosa says he hasn't spoken with President Obama about making a push to address same-sex marriage in the party's platform. If the Amendment passes in North Carolina next month, it could be a signal that Democrats would disenfranchise key voters by bringing up the issue in their party platform. Obama only narrowly won North Carolina in 2008. Villaraigosa says evolving political views in the South - and North Carolina's importance to the Obama Campaign - were factors in the decision to hold the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.