Antonio Villaraigosa let Wolf Blitzer get the exclusive
on the worst-kept secret in California -- he's officially not running for governor.
The LAT's Phil Willon and Maeve Reston report , "The former state assembly speaker said he had been
making up his
mind “for a long time” and that the state's challenges had made the
decision an "agonizing” one.
Villaraigosa called the situation in
Sacramento “an abomination,” but hinted at the political risks of
announcing a statewide run so soon after being reelected
to a second
term. “I was elected mayor and reelected by the people of
city.They’ve given me the honor for a second term, and I feel
to complete the promise that I made to them. I’m going to dream, and I
want the people to dream with me,” he said.
Villaraigosa’s decision adds a dash of clarity to the race for the
2010 Democratic gubernatorial nomination which, at the
will be between state Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown and San
Gavin Newsom. Brown has yet to say if he will run,
while Newsom already
has announced his candidacy.
In a personal note, Villaraigosa said the demands of
trail would have kept him apart from his 16-year-old daughter, whom he
called the “apple of my eye.” “She’s got two more years of high school
and then she’s gone, and I don’t want to be campaigning for a year, and
then leading the state in Sacramento and my little
precious is, you
know, finishing up her high school education.”
Steve Lopez is there, per usual with the proverbial
salt to rub in to Villaraigosa's wounds -- wounds that Lopez says are self-inflicted.
"You can't do a mediocre job, get lukewarm support in the polls,
and announce one week before the start of your second
term that you're
graduating to bigger challenges. That'd be like getting a 2.0 GPA in
high school and announcing you'd like to be a brain surgeon. Although Villaraigosa
had already made it clear he was probably
going to bow out of the race, there was our guy on
CNN with Wolf
Blitzer this afternoon, making it official on national
Antonio. He actually thinks the rest of the country
"I can't leave this city in the middle of a crisis," he said. "It's as simple as that."
Because of our crisis?
Here's a bulletin:
"He's not running because at the moment, he knows he wouldn't win,
given all the self-inflicted damage he's done by way of empty public
promises and dubious private choices.
Trust me, if he still thought he had a chance, he'd be scratching at the doors of donors in every ZIP
Gavin Newsom and Steve Poizner pushed their opposition research files aside to say
something nice about the LA mayor, now that he's staying put. While Jerry Brown was laying claim to Villaraigosa's votes. The Chron's Joe Garofoli chatted with the AG Monday.
"One thing you should know is that I lived in Los Angeles
to 1989," Brown said. "And my first office was on the Los Angeles
Community College Board of Trustees. So I have deep
roots in the
community. And a lot of friends and supporters there."
And in related news, turns out that some of Jerry's best friends are Latino!
"Jerry -- a native San Franciscan -- also rented an
apartment in Sacramento while serving as governor from
1975-83. And he
spent considerable post-gov time in the 1980s in India with Mother
Teresa, and now lives in Oakland -- where he was mayor from 1998-2006."
We expect Brown to carry Calcutta by a wide margin
Dan Walters' analysis says Villaraigosa's decision may help Brown more than Newsom.
"Brown also has decades-long ties to the state's Latino leadership. He
appointed several high-profile Latinos during his governorship,
including a state Supreme Court justice, and championed
the cause of the United Farm Workers union and its
late leader Caesar Chavez, by pushing a historic farm labor relations law through
Sure, it might not matter in the real world. But in
our little world of California politics, this passes
for big news: Fresno Assemblyman Juan Arambula has left the Democratic
Party , and registered as a decline-to-state.
Jim Boren was the first to pick up on Arambula's potential move Sunday.
"In three terms in the state Legislature, Fresno Democrat
Arambula has found there is little room for a moderate
believes in finding workable compromises to the state's most difficult
problems. He's been smacked down so many times that he says he's
feeling like a skunk in church when he's at Democratic caucus meetings.
tried to make life miserable for him, even while they
talk of the
Democratic Party's "big tent." Of course, they assigned him to a tiny
office in the big tent for not rubber-stamping leadership positions.
And they've tossed him off key committees for not always saluting
public employee unions that drive Democratic politics
What this means for the upcoming budget vote remains
But it is clear that Arambula's main points of contention have been the budget, and
Earlier this month, the Modesto Bee reported " Assemblyman Juan Arambula, D-Fresno, is concerned about a lack
of input. He said he tried to get on the conference committee.
suggested that leaders kept him off because he has
significant spending cuts in private caucus meetings,
Democrats want tax increases.
"Maybe I've been outspoken ...
about the need to make more cuts," he said. "That's not an approach
that sits well with some folks."
The Bee's Andy Furillo reports, "A California
lawmaker arranged an improper deal with state corrections officials to
stop an influx of parolees into his district 10 months before voters
approved "Jessica's Law," the 2006 ballot measure he wrote to restrict
where paroled sex offenders
In what state Sen.George Runner characterized as a "side agreement" with the California Department of Corrections and
Rehabilitation, the prison and parole agency said it
would limit assignments of released offenders into
the Antelope Valley to those who had "historical ties" to the area."
Let's give the wheel of hypocrisy a spin, and find out
how this one ranks...
Meanwhile, Gov. Schwarzenegger's CalTrans director is hitting the road. The LAT's My-Thuan Tran reports, "The
state's top transportation official has been hired to direct
County Transportation Authority, a job that comes with
a much larger
salary and, perhaps, a lot less frustration.
Will Kempton has headed the California Department of
the last five years, overseeing 50,000 miles of state highways and
directing $10 billion worth of transportation projects. He was
appointed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to steer the
$14-billion transportation budget.
Kempton has worked in the transportation industry for
35 years. He
lives in Folsom but indicated that he will move to
Orange County. He
will earn $255,000 a year to head OCTA. As the head of Caltrans, he
made $150,000 a year."
Are we the only ones who want to know how that is humanly
From the world of Hollywood, NBC reports,
"Ed McMahon died at a hospital in Los Angeles this morning, his agent said today. The 86-year-old TV personality died this morning at Ronald Regan
UCLA Medical Center."
Meanwhile, the LAT's Julie Anne Strack reports the First Lady's Club gathered in San Francisco to talk about working without pay . State workers can relate to that one, right?
first visit to California as first lady, Michelle Obama on Monday
helped volunteers construct a school playground here
on a site that has
been barren for years.
"Imagine the changes that happen with the creation of
this park," Obama said, speaking at Bret Harte Elementary School.
"Kids who were never able to play on a swing set will
get the opportunity to play."
"Obama joined California's first lady, Maria Shriver, at the school to launch
the Obama administration's United We Serve initiative, a national effort to organize service projects throughout
And congratulations to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger who
wins the Roundup's first Twitterer of the Day Award for these two blasts Monday evening:
"Backstage after my speech talking with Matthew McConaughey
which was soon followed by:
"Bon Jovi is performing now - Maria goes on next."
On sheer surreal/ironic pop culture points alone, the governor wins
in a landslide.