In a press conference that was going to address a major financial milestone as well as the progress of the I-85 bridge reconstruction and the skate park that was found under that same bridge, Mayor Reed also discussed potential mayoral candidate Vincent Fort. He did not hold back.
After answering a few questions about the skate park and praising the financial milestone that was accomplished for the City of Atlanta, a reporter opened the floodgates after mentioning Fort, which was followed by a sincere chuckle and smile from Mayor Reed. His following statement was:
“Well, first of all I want to congratulate him on his retirement, and you and I should bet a dollar on a dozen donuts as to whether he actually qualifies for the office of mayor, right? So, let’s remember, you get to run around and be on television and do cartwheels and make videos and be in the news up until the time you have to resign that health insurance and that $700 a month that he loves getting so much from the GA General Assembly, right? Right?”
He then criticized the effectiveness of Fork's presence on the GA General Assembly:
“I think Vincent ought to pass the bill. When I was in the senate, I used to pass legislation. This guy, when he was retiring, after 20 years of service in the GA General Assembly, couldn’t get a bill passed. You all covered it. He made that bold announcement, right? After he used his senate position and sat in my office, right there in that chair, and pleaded for a job for his son? That doesn’t seem like something Bernie Sanders would do. Do you do that? You call up people you have over site for and say my son needs a job? No I’m going to finish this…most folks at home don’t do that. So, Mr. Fort can keep shooting and I’m going to keep shooting right back. Because he would be a disaster as mayor the same way he has been a disaster at the GA State Senate. What has he accomplished? Zero.”
Reed then went on to criticize the media's role in questioning Fort on his finances, just as "you did with me".
“You’re talking about a guy, who, he was in the senate, has his senate check garnished and he wants to run a $2 billion operation. Did you hear me? So a $16,000 annual check was garnished. When are ya’ll going to ask him about stuff like that?”
“I gave you all of my tax returns. Like when are ya’ll going to start taking this stuff seriously like you did with me? In-depth investigations?”
Kasim Reed can't run for a third term, and his coming absence has set off a political feeding frenzy of possible candidates. Vincent Fort is just one of about a dozen candidates who have either declared or expressed their intention to run.