Bowser meets with Trump; says president-elect is DC ‘supporter’

WASHINGTON — D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser met Tuesday with President-elect Donald Trump for a “wide-ranging” conversation that included federal action to improve the area’s beleaguered Metro system and a push to make D.C. the 51st state, which was overwhelmingly approved by voters last month.

Speaking to reporters from the lobby of Trump Tower in Manhattan after her meeting with the president-elect, Bowser declined to discuss many of the specifics of her conversation.

“The one thing that I know emphatically that he said is that he is a supporter of the District of Columbia,” Bowser said. “He’s familiar with the District of Columbia and he wants to be supportive.”

Bowser said she stressed to Trump that D.C. is not totally dependent on the federal government for its funding.

City leaders have been working for the better part of a year to craft a new constitution that would provide statehood status for the District. D.C. voters approved the measure — 78 percent to 13 percent. The statehood push requires approval from the U.S. Congress.

“We talked about the things that are important to Washingtonians and certainly becoming the 51st state is one of them,” Bowser said.

Bowser said she also brought up “federal involvement” in improving Metro, which has undergone a series of painful temporary service cuts to clear out a long-neglected backlog of maintenance projects.

Trump has proposed a massive $1 trillion effort to rebuild the nation’s roads, airports and other infrastructure.

Other topics included economic development projects, education and the city’s preparation for Trump’s inauguration in January, Bowser said.

Shortly after Trump’s election victory, Bowser said Trump needed to mend fences with D.C. residents — about 93 percent of whom voted for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in last month’s election.

But Bowser has also said she shares “common ground” with the Republican businessman.

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