Long Beach pol quits over story

P-T photoCity Councilman Dan Baker resigned dramatically in front of TV cameras during Tuesday's council meeting, blaming a press "witch hunt" about his business dealings. Before leaving the room he wrote out a check for $28.99 to cover the costs of personal phone calls from his city phone uncovered by the Press-Telegram. His sudden, showy exit roiled the waters of Long Beach politics, the P-T reports:

Embattled City Councilman Dan Baker abruptly resigned his position at the beginning of Tuesday's council meeting, leaving behind a panel of stunned colleagues and apparently ending a once-promising political career.

"I'm going to step aside and I'm pretty much done," Baker said before walking out of the nearly empty Council Chambers. "The council, I hope, will be able to move on with its business and move on with the very important things of this city. So effective tomorrow, I will be resigning my position on the City Council."

The resignation came five days after the Press-Telegram published a story detailing Baker's real estate partnership with Steve James, the head of the city's police union.

Baker and James formed a limited partnership in August 2005 to buy a $7.5 million apartment complex in Springfield, Mo. Less than two weeks later, Baker voted to approve a union contract giving officers a 21 percent raise over four years.

In resigning, Baker said that he did not feel obligated to divulge the names of his business partners.

Baker's resignation
Shock and sadness


More by Kevin Roderick:
John Severson, 83, founder of Surfer magazine
LA Observed Notes: 60 Minutes, selling the Coliseum and more
Gil Cedillo, Nick Melvoin win LA runoffs*
LA Observed Notes: Baca goes down, LAX shuffle, media moves
LA Observed Notes: Big TV news, media moves, obits and more
Recent stories on LA Observed:
John Severson, 83, founder of Surfer magazine
Amy Goodman
LA Observed Notes: 60 Minutes, selling the Coliseum and more
'Tosca' glitters, Calleja swoons, Abraham and Taylor dance
Stendahl Gallery
Help for the homeless a phone call away?
Gil Cedillo, Nick Melvoin win LA runoffs*
LA Observed Notes: Baca goes down, LAX shuffle, media moves


 

LA Observed on Twitter