Wednesday, December 26, 2012

2013 L.A. City Elections: The Mayoral Contenders

The four main contenders for the Mayor of Los Angeles are City Controller Wendy Greuel, 51, City Councilmember Eric Garcetti, 41, Councilmember Jan Perry, 58, and gay Republican  Kevin James, 49.

The Los Angeles Times breaks down the race:
Greuel claims an advantage because she's the only candidate to have won a citywide contest. She's landed endorsements from a number of prominent Latino politicians, as well as Democratic Sen.Barbara Boxer and entertainment titans Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen, who ran the DreamWorks motion picture studios when she was an executive there.
Her campaign believes that female voters will also be key, galvanized by the potential of electing the first female mayor in city history. Taken together, it's a coalition that will get her to the general election, Greuel campaign strategist John Shallman says, and then give her the win, probably against Garcetti.
Garcetti's camp isn't conceding anything. Son of former Dist. Atty. Gil Garcetti, he is backed by the Latino Coalition of Los Angeles-PAC and recently won an important endorsement from the Democratic Party of the San Fernando Valley.
He identifies himself as half Latino, the grandson of Mexican immigrants, and often addresses Latino audiences in fluent Spanish. Although he now lives in Silver Lake, he's a Valley boy, having grown up in Encino before leaving for college at Columbia.
Perry believes she'll draw not only the 10% to 13% of votes cast by African Americans, but also fiscal conservatives who like her tough-on-unions talk and pivotal council role in shaping downtown redevelopment.
When people find out she's Jewish, her share of that vote grows dramatically, Perry says, citing internal polling. She also thinks she'll do well among working-class white women and Latinas, who see her as an aspirational figure.
James, the only candidate to support Riordan's proposal to switch new city workers from defined pensions into self-managed 401(k)-style retirement plans, said he would emphasize that stance and his status as the only major candidate not embedded in the City Hall establishment.
GOP ad man Fred Davis recently created a Super PAC to independently support James, and the candidate also believes he'll draw backing from voters disaffected with City Hall.
However, political analysts say a big infusion of outside cash could end up hurting instead of helping the race's only Republican candidate. Los Angeles is largely Democratic, liberal and suspicious of large sums spent to frame a campaign.
The primary election is March 5, 2013 with the run off on May 21, 2013 (my birthday!)

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