Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Gay Republican Mayor of Los Angeles?

Kevin James is a former conservative radio talk-show host and gay Republican who has declared his candidacy for Mayor of Los Angeles. The Mayoral primary election is March 5, 2013 and James is facing off against three other declared Democratic candidates, former City Council president Eric Garcetti, City councilwoman Jan Perry and City Controller Wendy Greuel. Millionaire real-estate developed Rick Caruso declined to join the race in October 2012.

Currently, Garcetti is considered the slight front-runner in the race, which is confirmed by fundraising totals which show him slightly ahead of Greuel and both way ahead of Perry.
Los Angeles City Councilman Eric Garcetti has raised $2.87 million for his mayoral bid, edging ahead of City Controller Wendy Greuel by about $72,000 in the search for campaign cash, according to figures released Wednesday by the two campaigns.
Garcetti raised $664,000 in the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with $592,000 collected by Greuel, who has taken in $2.8 million since launching her campaign.
Garcetti reported $2.35 million still available in his coffers, compared with $2.25 million for Greuel.
Meanwhile, Councilwoman Jan Perry reported raising $1.3 million since the start of her campaign, including more than $150,000 over the last three months. Perry said she wasn't worried about her third-place position in the money race.
"I will continue to raise money till election day," Perry said. "And I will have enough money to run my race in a competitive manner."
Former prosecutor Kevin James reported collecting a campaign total of $275,090 as of the end of last month. A fifth candidate, tech company executive Emanuel Pleitez, reported raising slightly more than $110,000 since joining the race in July.
If no candidate gets more than 50% on March 5, there will be a run-off between the two top vote-getters on May 21, 2013 (my birthday!)

The latest wrinkle in the money race is a report this weekend that a Super PAC run by a Republican political operative says it may spend $4 million to promote Kevin James' candidacy.
Looking to dramatically tip the scales in the race for Los Angeles' next mayor, a nationally prominent Republican media strategist has formed a "super PAC" that aims to spend millions of dollars to elect dark-horse mayoral candidate Kevin James.
Fred Davis, a GOP advertising man who has worked on campaigns for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, U.S. Senate hopeful Carly Fiorina and former President George W. Bush, said the Better Way LA committee has raised nearly $500,000 on behalf of James and plans to collect at least $3.5 million more.
Will Republicans in Los Angeles (and California) really rally behind a openly gay candidate for Mayor? And is Kevin James going to become the first openly LGBT head of a major city after openly lesbian Annise Parker of Houston?

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is termed out and can not run for re-election.

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