Obama to mayors: Shovel your snow

President Obama dispensed one crucial piece of wisdom to hundreds of mayors from nearly every state gathered at the White House on Thursday: "Make sure you're shoveling the snow."

"Just a little piece of advice," the president said to laughter. "It's been cold."

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Ironically, the mayor who might have most benefited from Obama's advice — recently elected New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio — wasn't in attendance.

Earlier Thursday, de Blasio admitted during a press conference that the city had made mistakes removing snow in the tony Upper East Side of Manhattan. Critics of the famously populist mayor suggested a political motivation for the poor performance of plows in the neighborhood.

"They're just mistaken," de Blasio said. "No one was treated differently. We believe in a five-borough approach in everything we do. People need to be mindful when they hurl those charges."

The mayors were gathered in Washington for an annual conference, and the president praised them for "proving that you don't have to wait for the gridlock to clear in Congress in order to make things happen."

The president repeated his familiar pledge to do the same by utilizing his pen and phone in the upcoming year.

"Where Congress is debating things and hasn't been able to pull the trigger on stuff, my administration's going to move forward, and we're going to do it in partnership with you," Obama said.

White House press secretary Jay Carney said that, in addition to the mayors, a "large number of Cabinet secretaries and senior officials from across our administration" had met with the city heads to discuss the economy, education, and healthcare.