"Given that about 80 percent of Americans live in urban areas, why have so few mayors been elected to the top political posts in the United States?
The answer can be found, perhaps, in the ideals of the men who drafted the American constitution 300 years ago and administered the country's earliest federal governments.
"I view great cities as pestilential to the morals, the health and the liberties of man," Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1800 while he was vice-president and one year before being elected president. As president, Jefferson despised his political opponents because, in his words, "They all live in cities."
With few exceptions, Jefferson had little sympathy for the people who lived in cities. "The mobs of great cities add just so much to support of pure government as sores do to the strength of the human body," he wrote."