Antonio Villaraigosa called some reporters to his Mt. Washington home today and told them in interviews that he is running for mayor. The Times' Jessica Garrison was first up with a story late in the evening. Some reaction in the Times story:
Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, a political analyst and senior scholar at USC, said the race appears wide open at this point. "This is a game of three-dimensional chess," she said. "I have no idea how this is going to play out.... That's the bottom line. The only observation I'm comfortable making is that Hahn is in danger of his base eroding further."...
"Surprise, surprise, surprise," said Bill Carrick, the mayor's political advisor. "We have a strong record to talk about and that's what we're going to do."...
Alarcon, Parks and Hertzberg welcomed Villaraigosa into the race, with varying degrees of warmth.
"It strengthens the possibility that we will have a new mayor," Alarcon said. "If anyone is concerned about Antonio entering the race, it is Mayor Hahn."
"It can't be anything but positive," Parks said. "I think it's indicative that he sensed the same thing I have ... that there's a great deal of disenchantment with the current administration."
Hertzberg, who was once close to Villaraigosa and shared a house with him in Sacramento before the two had a falling out, said he took his candidacy as a sign that "Hahn won't win."
The official announcement apparently comes Tuesday. (Rick Orlov sat for the Daily News, David Zahniser for the Breeze, Pilar Marrero for La Opinión. Hoy also plays it big.) Mack Reed at LAVoice.org takes a look at the Villaraigosa campaign website, which he says came online at 10:36 p.m. And, yes (or Oh no!, depending on your preference) there is a campaign blog. Or will be: the Blogspot-located page has no entries yet.
The Money Game: Hertzberg reports raising $700,000, but his world just changed with Villaraigosa now going after the same money and voters. Hahn, meanwhile, still has $1.5 million in the bank and most of the campaign advisers who whipped Villaraigosa last time. (Times, Daily News)
Updated Tuesday, 9:30 a.m.