The union representing rank-and-file LAPD officers today gave its mayoral nod to Controller Wendy Greuel. "Wendy’s background of working in the private sector, both in a small family business and in a major studio in the entertainment industry, along with her knowledge and experience of serving our city as a Councilmember and as City Controller demonstrate that she has a strong understanding of public safety and what it takes in order keep Los Angeles safe,” the league's president, Tyler Izen, said in a statement. “Wendy recognizes the importance of putting public safety first while at the same time working on issues that people really care about, like creating jobs, fixing potholes and fighting waste, fraud and abuse in city government.”
Rival Eric Garcetti earlier today announced the endorsements of state Assembly members Jimmy Gomez and Isadore Hall of Los Angeles, and Rob Bonta of the Oakland area. [* Added: He also responded to the Greuel endorsement through spokesman Jeff Millman: "Eric will be an independent problem solver for LA. He has worked to lower violent crime in his district by more than 60% and will continue to work with rank and file police officers to lower crime citywide."]
The top candidates are taking part in a debate tonight in front of the Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association at Notre Dame High School. The campaigns, I'm told, are expecting a bit of feistiness all around — the SOHA format allows two direct questions each to other candidates.
The Police Protective League spends big when it wants to — having a friend in the mayor's office can be a big help to the union. Raises and pensions for police officers figure to be major issues as City Hall looks to streamline spending.
Noted: David Zahniser points out in an LA Times blog item that in 2009, the league spent $745,000 to elect Carmen Trutanich as city attorney. "Two years later, the group spent more than $108,000 on an unsuccessful effort to unseat City Councilman Bernard C. Parks, a former police chief" the union had a bad relationship with at the LAPD.