Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed says he’s staying — not joining Obama administration

By Maria Saporta

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has no intention to join the second administration of President Barack Obama.

At the Carter breakfast Thursday morning at the Atlanta History Center, Reed was asked directly whether he could guarantee that he would be mayor in 2017 if he were to be re-elected next year.

The mayor’s answer was an unconditional yes.

The breakfast — titled “A Bold New Future” — was put on by the Carter real estate group, timed just two days after the presidential election when Obama solidly won re-election. Reed has been one of the president’s strongest advocates in the deep Republican South — often serving as one of the administration’s backers on national television shows, such as Meet the Press.

Although there has been rampant speculation that Reed would be offered a position in the Obama administration, apparently that is not in the cards.

“He’s been pretty clear on that,” said Sonji Jacobs, who heads communications for the mayor. “He is running for re-election, and he wants to be mayor for second term.”

The mayor also reaffirmed his commitment to explore light rail opportunities for the Atlanta BeltLine despite the defeat of the regional transportation sales tax on July 31.

Reed even went further than that. He said he will be working to get a high speed rail link between Atlanta and Savannah so that the trip could be done in just one hour.

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.

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