L.A. Votes: Candidates woo voters, slam rivals and raise money
With less than two weeks to go before Election Day in Los Angeles, candidates for mayor, City Council and city attorney are working overtime to sway undecided voters, ding their opponents and raise funds.
Mayoral candidate Jan Perry is making a hard play in the San Fernando Valley, promoting herself as a fiscal conservative while launching blistering attacks on City Controller Wendy Greuel. But it’s an open question whether the councilwoman can offset Greuel’s home-base advantage and fundraising edge.
Perry announced the endorsement of community leader and former city Library Commission President David A. Lehrer, while Greuel got the nod of a number of business leaders across the city.
In the City Council races, Gov. Jerry Brown backed former state legislator Gil Cedillo in the 1st district in Central L.A., Ana Cubas won the endorsement of La Opinion in the 9th District in South Los Angeles, and Matt Szabo received the support of Southern California Americans for Democratic Action in the 13th District that includes Hollywood.
On the mailbox battlefront, mayoral candidate Kevin James is hitting Greuel over a $50,000 donation from former, unpopular Dodgers owner Frank McCourt to the independent committee backing her bid. And Greuel is using James in a fundraising appeal that warns “Right-wing extremists are getting involved in the Mayor’s race. I need your help today.”
Mayoral candidate and councilman Eric Garcetti plans to hold an afternoon press conference at City Hall to tout his efforts on behalf of undocumented immigrants, while long-shot candidate Emanuel Pleitez will lay out his immigration platform at a morning news conference in Boyle Heights.
Meanwhile, the candidates remain focused on a less obvious but vital facet of campaigning — raising cash.
Greuel will be the beneficiary of a Wednesday evening fundraiser at the Beverly Hills home of billionaire media mogul Haim Saban that will features an appearance by U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.). Garcetti will pick up some checks at a foodie-focused fundraiser at the Petersen Automotive Museum, featuring small bites from the likes of chefs John Sedlar of Rivera and Jiro Kobayashi of Sushi Roku. And a novelty in the city attorney's contest — Noel Weiss, who has until now eschewed raising or spending money, will hold his first fundraiser this weekend.
— Seema Mehta
Comments, questions or tips on city elections? Tweet me at @LATSeema
Graphic: A map plotting past L.A. mayoral voting patterns. Credit: Ben Welsh / Los Angeles Times