Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx says his city is more than ready for the influx of delegates, politicians and media this week that accompany the Democratic National Convention this week, and said he sees the weeklong party celebration as a starting point for growth in the Queen City and the state.
The Democrats will overrun two venues – Time Warner Cable Arena and Bank of America Stadium – for events this week, and it all will be facilitated by more than 16,000 volunteers from across the state.
But when the party ends, the benefits extend, Foxx said, noting long-term investments by AT&T and Verizon in upgrading their network coverage of the city and the international opportunity to showcase North Carolina's economy, character and work ethic.
Still, the mayor agrees, there is work to be done. "We've got to start making progress," he told WRAL's David Crabtree. "We've got lots of issues to deal with as a country and mayors can't wait.
"The ground level is where people are feeling the brunt of what's happening in this country right now, particularly with the sharp partisanship that is coming out of Congress."
Foxx said he believes the presidential election will be a close one in North Carolina, but the state will end up in the Democratic column.
"The president has done an enormous amount to help get North Carolina out of the ditch," he said.
Ultimately, when North Carolina voters compare the two presidential candidates, Foxx said, they will vote for Obama. "They know he's been working for their interest over the last four years, and he's been effective at it."