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Villaraigosa backs Janice Hahn for new congressional district seat

September 1, 2011 | 12:08 pm

Recently seated Rep. Janice Hahn (D-San Pedro) has picked up the endorsement of Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in her bid to seek election next year to a newly drawn congressional district that stretches north from the harbor area, where she lives, into Carson, Compton, Lynwood and South Gate.

Villaraigosa said it was a "no brainer" for him to back Hahn, a former Los Angeles city councilwoman, "because I know she'll fight for more jobs, and Los Angeles, in Congress."

Hahn, whose current district, the largely coastal 36th, was decimated in the recent once-a-decade redistricting, drew criticism from some African American leaders because they consider the new district, the 44th, one of just three in Southern California favorable to the election of a black. Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Long Beach) and Assemblyman Isadore Hall (D-Compton), both black, want to run in that district.

Earlier, Hahn racked up endorsements from Carson Mayor Jim Dear and a couple of labor unions -- but so far no African Americans have signed on.

-- Jean Merl