The voters of the city of Los Angeles will have to decide next year 2022, who will be their new mayor, since the current municipal president Eric Garcetti is running out of term to govern without the option of re-election.
But also due to his nomination as US ambassador to India, it is very likely that he will step down during the first months of next year, and an interim mayor will be appointed while voters elect his replacement in November.
There are more than a dozen hopefuls to be the next mayor of Los Angeles, as of January 2023.
So far, those who have gone public with their campaigns are councilors Kevin De León for District 14, Joe Buscaino for District 15, Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer and Congresswoman Karen Bass.
Also jumping into the fray are businessman Craig Greiwe, Central City Association president Jessica Lall, real estate agent Mel Wilson, businessman Ramit Varma, developer Sean Enrigth, community organizer William Rodriguez Morrison and others less well known.
Billionaire shopping mall real estate developer Rick Caruso has announced that he is considering running for mayor as he is tired of so many robberies and unbridled homelessness.
“This is not the first time that Caruso has considered running for mayor. Almost every election announces that you are considering running, but you can’t decide. So it is unlikely that it will be launched, ”says consultant and political strategist, Luis Alvarado.
On the other hand, he comments that it is too early to say who could win the election or where the balance would tip.
“We have seen that Congresswoman Karen Bass came in very strong, but the news that her consultants have left their campaign does not favor her.”
Even though she is a candidate with a long political career, her great challenge is to convince Angelenos, mostly Latinos, that she is a candidate who can represent them regardless of the fact that former mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and leader Dolores Huerta have given her their support. .
“Mathematically the strongest candidate is Kevin De León, and in second place are tied Karen Bass and Councilor Joe Buscaino.”
De León is a leader in Los Angeles, former Assemblyman, former Senate leader, has a name in the Latino community and is seeking support from non-Latinos.
However, he considers that it is too early to make any predictions, since the candidates for mayor of Los Angeles are just two steps away from having left the goal.
“We are 6 months away from the primary election, anyone can stand up, and the issues they should focus on and make good proposals are: health to protect people from covid-19, the economy, the safety of families and the helpless ”.
In the primary election on June 7, 2022, the two candidates with the most votes will appear on the ballot for the general election on November 8, and from among them, the new mayor of LA will emerge.
Chamba Sánchez, a political science professor at Los Angeles community colleges, said that in light of recent crime in shopping malls, voters will demand stronger anti-crime laws from candidates for mayor, governor and hopes that the issue is addressed in some proposals that may reach the ballot.
Therefore, he noted that the candidates have to be more receptive and some of them have already started attacking the homeless and demanding tougher laws.
“The biggest news next year is whether Rick Caruso will decide to run for Mayor. He has hired top-notch consultants, who are evaluating his odds and challenges. “
Mario Beltrán, a Democratic consultant, said the list of more than a dozen candidates for mayor of Los Angeles is something that has become fashionable, and is a reflection of the discontent that exists.
“For now I see the odds very close between councilors Kevin De León, Joe Buscaino and Congresswoman Karen Bass.”
But he highlights that given the climate that lives in Los Angeles with so many homeless people and the increase in crime, he does not doubt that the radical proposals of councilman Buscaino, who was a policeman with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) for 15 years, may catch on among the electorate, who are tired of insecurity and the overgrowth of the homeless.
As councilman Buscaino is seeking to ban homeless camps around public schools.
“And as a former policeman, he may be successful with his tough policy against crime, especially given the increase in the wave of violence in the city.”
Regarding Congresswoman Bass, whom she defines as a career politician, Beltrán says she is trying to promote herself as an independent candidate for City Council politics.
“The Los Angeles City Attorney, Mike Feuer, has had a harder time winning the mayoralty, due to the ineptitude of his office to respond to the corruption of the Department of Light and Water (LADWP). He personally has not done anything wrong, but they are going to use that against him ”.
Former LADWP chief David H. Wright, 62, agreed to plead guilty to one count of bribery in a corruption case involving the agency who already ran Prosecutor Feuer’s office. Wright was removed from office in 2019 by Mayor Garcetti.
In fact, an attorney hired by Feuer’s office also pleaded guilty to one charge of bribery in a nearly $ 2.2 million scheme stemming from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Electricity billing fiasco in 2013.
Beltrán says that without a doubt De León is the candidate with the most realistic and humane position, whose goal would be to build more houses in Los Angeles to reduce homelessness.
But he anticipates that the mayoral campaign will be dirty and full of attacks.
“They are going to try to connect Kevin and Buscaino with the scandals in the Cabildo of the ex-councilors; Karen Bass is already going to be attacked for having received a scholarship from the University of Southern California (USC) when she could either pay for her studies with her income or request an educational loan like everyone else does.
“This can be seen as an abuse of power and politically it does not look good. It was a mistake to have accepted that scholarship ”.
It should be noted that the House Ethics Committee authorized Karen Bass in 2011 to receive the $ 95,000 scholarship offered by USC to do a master’s degree in social work. He graduated in 2015.
“The USC has turned out to be a toxic university institution, a radioactive source because of its relations with politicians who later end up facing federal charges.”
Without a doubt, Beltrán reiterates that the mayoral election will be very competitive.
But he also pointed out that it will be interesting to see his proposals to address the serious problems left by Mayor Garcetti: homelessness, insecurity and the homeless.
“We live in a city in which those who are not homeless and now have a roof, are two checks away, or an accident or an emergency expense of not being able to pay their rent, stay on the street and join the ranks of the homeless”.