Campaign 2013

Campaign Wednesday: Liars, dead bodies and plenty of news

Greuel goes negative

I found a new, mostly black mailer at home last night from the Wendy Greuel for mayor campaign saying "the numbers don't lie, but politicians like Garcetti and Perry do." It went on the stack next to the deep red, Pinocchio-themed mailer from Greuel that says "why are City Council politicians Eric Garcetti and Jan Perry lying about Wendy Greuel's audits?"

Now comes a radio ad slamming Garcetti for taking "luxury trips around the world" that cost taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars. Gene Maddaus of the LA Weekly posted it.

James goes noir

kevin-james-bodies-grab.jpgA new Kevin James video, also posted by Maddaus last night, uses actors to depict Greuel and Garcetti driving mysteriously through a dark night. Then they stop, dig a hole and bury a dead body in a field. When Wendy Greuel says she knows where the bodies are buried, the narrator intones, believe her. So now we have candidates depicted as conspiratorial murders?

By the way, it's posted at the Kevin James for mayor YouTube channel — so presumably it's not one of the independent productions from Republican consultant Fred Davis.

There's also a new independent video for James going around. It's rapped by a Chapman University graduate who compares Greuel to Justin Bieber and calls Garcetti a daddy's boy. ""Five bucks says this video gets more hits than Kevin James gets votes," quipped Greuel strategist John Shallman.

Boxer email for Greuel

An email appeal from Sen. Barbara Boxer plays the first woman mayor card, asking people to donate to Greuel to "make history."

It has been amazing to watch Wendy campaign around the clock and across-the-city to be mayor for all of LA. The response she is receiving everywhere has been overwhelming, but there is still so much to do between now and Election Day -- and Wendy needs our help right now. Tonight at midnight, Wendy's campaign will file its very last fundraising report before the primary, and everyone will be scrutinizing these numbers to see who's got the momentum in these last days. With the election just a week away, we need to send the message -- loud and clear -- that we've got Wendy's back....

She also has the opportunity to make history as the first woman mayor in the history of LA. There have been 41 mayors of Los Angeles, but not a single one of them has been a woman. It's been 163 years -- don't you think it's time?

Running for mayor as a woman

Linda Griego ran in 1993, the post-riots race in which Richard Riordan and Michael Woo got into the runoff. She was a former deputy mayor and the face behind Engine Co. 28, a downtown restaurant popular with politicians and the redevelopment crowd. She also was the first woman to run for mayor of Los Angeles (she says — I haven't checked.) She says the remarkable thing about 2013 is that it's not really news anymore that a woman might win. From a piece she contributed to Zocalo:

Things have changed a lot for women in business and politics, and in my career—sometimes on purpose, sometimes by chance—I wound up helping drive that change. It isn’t always fun to break a barrier (barriers can cause injuries), but it can be satisfying. I know that, because I had to learn it repeatedly.....

Still, for all the attention I got for being a woman and a Latina, it was also a year after the civil unrest that left 55 people dead, over 2,000 injured, and more than 1,000 buildings damaged or destroyed. Racial tensions ran high. The Los Angeles Police Department leadership was in turmoil. People felt vulnerable. Richard Riordan’s campaign slogan, “Tough Enough to Turn L.A. Around,” was calculated to tap into that anxiety, and it was almost impossible for a female candidate to compete on that dimension. My campaign wound up raising nearly $800,000, a respectable haul for three months, but Riordan, who won, raised $4.6 million ($3 million of which were his own funds), and L.A. was ready for his message.

In the past 10 years, women have been elected to more and more offices locally and nationally. Leaders like Hilary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, and Dianne Feinstein have dispelled doubts about whether women can be tough. Cities like Houston, San Diego, and Dallas have all elected women mayors. As with ethnicity, gender simply matters less to voters than it once did.

I’ve heard friends say it would be great for L.A. to have a woman mayor, and I agree. But Jan Perry and Wendy Greuel, the two leading female candidates, have had to work just as hard as any male candidate to win the support of female voters. If they win, it will be as candidates, not as women.

Activity in the 9th district

This morning Mayor Villaraigosa endorsed Curren Price for the open seat in the 9th council district, currently held by Jan Perry. Price also recently got the endorsement of Gov. Jerry Brown.

Another candidate, Ana Cubas, was holding a press conference this morning on the City Hall steps with the district's former councilmember, Rita Walters, to decry the lack of woman on the City Council. When Perry leaves, there will be none pending the results of this year's elections.

News notes
  • Boxer also endorsed Mike Feuer for city attorney
  • The Times endorsed Joe Buscaino for city council in CD 15.

Media links
  • Labor pours millions into L.A. races LAT/Zahniser
  • Eric Garcetti's Solyndra: Mayoral Candidate Pushed $1 Million Deal to Lure Troubled Electric-Car Company LA Weekly/Maddaus
  • Garcetti holds potential interest in Beverly Hills oil drilling LAT/Pringle
  • Greuel acquired a love of politics from working with Tom Bradley LAT/Reston
  • Cory Booker stumps for old classmate Garcetti in South L.A. LAT/Linthicum
  • Candidate profile: Jan Perry has vision for LA ABC7/North
  • L.A. offers new TV tax incentives, waiving pilot permit fees DN/Orlov
  • Kevin James Against The Machine Neon Tommy
  • Feuer, Smith and Trutanich, L.A. city attorney candidates, debate DN/Villacorte
  • Race for city controller heats up LAT/Saillant
  • Galperin questions Zine role in Westfield plan DN/Smith
  • City leaders hopes voters go for sales tax increase with Measure A KPCC/Walton
  • Deasy group aids 3 school board candidates LAT/Blume

More by Kevin Roderick:
'In on merit' at USC
Read the memo: LA Times hires again
Read the memo: LA Times losing big on search traffic
Google taking over LA's deadest shopping mall
Gustavo Arellano, many others join LA Times staff
Recent Campaign 2013 stories on LA Observed:
Shallman and Carrick on 'Which Way, LA?' tonight
Greuel consultant blames the LA Times
Morning Buzz: Friday 5.24.13
Campaign 2013 photo gallery by Gary Leonard
Election post-mortem in quotes (some very pointed)
Losers in the mayoral race: Latino leaders?
Yaroslavsky: No regrets and some advice for the next mayor
Garcetti thanks Greuel and LA, says election was 'never for sale'