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Democrats tap John Perez as next Assembly speaker today [Updated]

[Updated at 2:40 p.m.: Assembly Democrats this afternoon tapped John A. Perez to be the chamber's next leader, a boost that would make him the first openly gay lawmaker to hold the powerful post.

Perez emerged from an afternoon meeting of the chamber's Democrats locking arms with his chief rival, Assemblyman Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles) and the current leader, Speaker Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles).

“It's obviously an incredibly moving experience to have the unanimous support of my colleagues,” Perez said of his fellow Democrats.]

Perez, a cousin of Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, has served just a single year in the Legislature. As a result, he will be eligible to serve as Assembly speaker for up to five years – one of the longest tenures in the influential position since term limits capped Assembly service at six years.

A timetable for when he will replace Bass has not been set. Bass helped corral support for Perez last week, in part to fend off De Leon’s attempt to assume the speakership immediately.

A full vote of the Assembly to formally elect Perez as speaker has not been scheduled.

-- Eric Bailey and Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento
Comments () | Archives (25)

Shame on Mayor Villaraigoza for interfering int he "democratic" process of choosing an assembly speaker. Just one more reason to keep him from achieving any higher office! HIS COUSIN is Mr. Perez! Gee, how about making a better choice for the citizens of California!

Tab? Ummm....

Meet the new boss...same as the old boss...

We won't get fooled again!

Nepotism and political correctness walk hand-in-hand in that cesspool, we call our State Assembly...

He's been there a year (!) and he's *Speaker*? More misery for CA to come. Another clueless politician run amock....

He is a product of corrupt political cronyism. I wouldn't praise him as a role model for gay rights. Most likely, he'll end up as a corrupt and ineffective politician.

That's what happens when you vote in term limits. A stupid idea then, an even stupider idea now.

A minor detail, but couldn't LA Times come up with a better headline? Especially since Perez is gay?

Yes, yes and yes to all that. But, the big question on everyone's mind is, has he had a relationship with Tiger?


The state is broke, all our manufacturers and corporate headquarters are gone, our education system is in shambles, our infrastucture in tatters, our energy prices are though the roof, and we get a gay Hispanic reeking of nepotism with no experience to lead us to our salvation.

We're completely f'd. Thank you Democrats. At the rate you're going we'll gladly give California back to the Mexicans in twenty years. At least their drug dealers won't be inconvenienced by a fence any longer.

Los Angeles should not equal Detroit.

We have to vote them out of office next Fall.

Could we please vote them out of office? Anybody?

Seriously, some of you are so jaded.. why do you even bother reading about politics?

You complain when long-time entrenched politicians remain in power and call them corrupt. Then you complain when new comers are elected into positions of authority and call them corrupt.

How about waiting to see how he goes about his new position before passing judgment? You might end up being right, but it's pretty useless to judge before he's even had his first day on the job.

But I guess it's easy to point fingers and complain on the internet than to be a part of the solution.

And yea... did the LA Times have to use the word "tap"?

"Big Jim Slade" you're a racist fool! I'm glad you made your comments because it proves that ignorant idiots like yourself are so afraid of change and differences and still exist in our society.

Congratulations John. It is about time that we get someone who is willing to challenge the Governor and perhaps cajole some of the Republicans into being leaders rather than obstructionists. John might have the benefit of being the Mayor's cousin but he has proven himself many times. Frankly so what if he is the Mayor's cousin. This is similar to the benefit of havign sucessful or rich parents. Finally some equality for Latinos. And to Big Jame Slade where do you come up with those racist, shallow comments.

This state is filled with such filth.

Congratulation to Perez! This is a big step forward for all Californians!

However, can we PLEASE get rid of or at least reform term limits? We shouldn't be changing Speakers every two years!

The worst part is. Jim Slade votes.

Time to leave the State. I'm sick of this freak show.

Did they chose him because he is gay and he has six years left under the cap limits and that the is Villaraigosa cousin? I guess all three could be a factor.

These people are so messed up. Jam it down your thoat whether you like it or not. Don't underestimate the backlash. While I am at it out with obama and boxer and pelosi and all the other crooks.

Check out Peter Schiff. At least he gets economics!

what was that remark that the democrats came out of the closet? regarding john's comment about giving it back to the mexicans, their politicians are just as corrupt as ours. the fact that a politician has been in office for one day makes them corrupt.party, race, sex, age, gothrough the whole eeoc spectrum, it makes no difference. name one uncorrupted politician. now, don't take so long and answer. admit it , you can't name a single one. neither can i.

Considering we're headed for another brutal round of deficit reductions, I'm not sure if the promotion is a great thing or more like walking into fire. We've been given little reason why he should be chosen especially being so new, but what's differnt. Good luck, I guess. But again people, just becuase he's gay doesn't mean he represents all millions of gay and lesbian people. Think about it.

well put erasure 25.

Hey Big Jim Slade, there is enough blame to go around, you are right CA. State Assembly is FUBAR but your republican cronies have a very large role to play in this mess.

Union leader, never held a non-taxpayer (i.e. private sector) funded job, strategist, no experience in office AND cousin of the mayor? It just doesn't get any better than this. He will be perfect. Everyone who is a drag on the system will be his closest ally and every hard working tax paying money making entity-person or business-will be in his sights to pick pocket. Hey, maybe the California death will be quicker with him, not as slow and painful as it has been. After all, unions,fed workers, illegal immigrants and welfare recepients are what make this state great...and broke.

Just a remark about those holding up the idea that Perez is a man of change. Why is he that? Maybe he is just the same old thing who hadn't until now been in office? What is new about Latino, union and democratic political strategist? There is nothing new about that... Much of CA is run by Latinos and unions and strategists and has been for 15 years. What matters is his connections make him beholden to those sectors above all else. If I told you the son of a former president connected to inherited money, oil and foreign entities was elected president you wouldn't say that is new-you would be angry because you don't like those groups maybe. Why is union, Latino and politically connected to a Dem mayor any more noble or more importantly anymore EFFECTIVE? Hasn't been shown to work in either case it seems...


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