So what would happen if Villaraigosa left office early?*

MayorAntonioVillaraigosa.jpgNot to jump the gun, but in the event that the mayor is nominated to be Transportation Secretary (Ray LaHood resigned this morning), the City Council would almost certainly fill the vacancy by appointment. If that were to happen, Council President Herb Wesson would most likely be the man. (Theoretically, the council could also hold a special election, according to the City Charter, but that would be impractical given how close we are to the regular election.) Who knows whether any of this would affect the actual mayoral race, but it could provide a twist to the March vote to raise the sales tax, which is being pushed by Wesson. It also could impact this year's budget talks. As for the transportation job, Villaraigosa isn't the only candidate. From the NYT:

Several people have been mentioned as possible replacements for Mr. LaHood at the Transportation Department. Among them: Antonio Villaraigosa, the Democratic mayor of Los Angeles; Ed Rendell, the former governor of Pennsylvania; Debbie Hersman, the chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board; and Jennifer Granholm, the former Democratic governor of Michigan.

*Update: Raphael Sonenshein, executive director of the Edmund G. "Pat" Brown Institute of Public Affairs, helps clarify the appointment procedure. Basically, the Council President immediately takes over as acting mayor. But that doesn't preclude the council from making an appointment later on.

Sec. 243. President and President Pro Tempore. (a) The Council shall elect one of its members as presiding officer, who shall be called the President of the Council. In case of any vacancy in the office of Mayor pending appointment and qualification of a successor, or in case of unavailability due to sickness, absence from the state, or disability of the Mayor, the President of the Council shall act as Mayor of the City. The President of the Council, while acting as Mayor, shall not lose his or her rights as a member of the Council.

More by Mark Lacter:
American-US Air settlement with DOJ includes small tweak at LAX
Socal housing market going nowhere fast
Amazon keeps pushing for faster L.A. delivery
Another rugged quarter for Tribune Co. papers
How does Stanford compete with the big boys?
Those awful infographics that promise to explain and only distort
Best to low-ball today's employment report
Further fallout from airport shootings
Crazy opening for Twitter*
Should Twitter be valued at $18 billion?
Recent City Hall stories:
Garcettis are moving to Getty House in January
Council members at large (photo)
Greuel and others pitch Clinton for president (video)
Exit interview with Port of L.A.'s executive director
Garcetti on changing city hall culture

New at LA Observed
On the Media Page
Go to Media

On the Politics Page
Go to Politics
Arts and culture

Sign up for daily email from LA Observed

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
LA Observed on Twitter and Facebook