|(April 12, 2018, 11:35 a.m.) -- On April 11 at 9:46 p.m., LBREPORT.com emailed Mayor Robert Garcia and his Chief of Staff, Mark Taylor (using their non-city email addresses) inquiring for publication if Mayor Garcia has previously stated publicly, or states now, that he will complete the full four year term of office to which he sought and won re-election as Mayor, meaning that (a) he will not seek the state Senate seat currently occupied by state Senator Lara if that seat becomes vacant in November 2018, and (b) he will not pursue a seat in Congress during the next four years.
We've received no response from either addressee thus far, but will do so as received. During his first term in office, Mayor Garcia (who routinely Tweets more than President Trump) didn't hold any open-subject news conferences where (with cameras rolling) he couldn't easily brush off that bluntly worded question (or other similar blunt questions routinely posed by reporters in other media markets.)
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As previously reported by LBREPORT.com, in a video recorded message for a
LBREPORT.com has previously speculated that Garcia, faced with term limits, may exit within months to seek the LB-area state Senate seat that will become vacant if incumbent state Senator Ricardo Lara (D, LB-Huntington Park) is elected statewide Insurance Commissioner in November 2018. Garcia was among the first to endorse Sen. Lara's pursuit of the statewide office and near instantly endorsed Sen. Lara's proposed state government run ("single payer") health care system. However Garcia isn't the only local pol potentially eyeing the state Senate seat. 8th dist. Councilman Al Austin, also facing term limits, signaled last year that he's considering a run for state Senate [no specifics offered at the time.] Others speculate 1st dist. Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez, recently winning a second term without a ballot opponent, may seek the seat if Garcia doesn't.
Others say Garcia has long been angling to replace Congressman Alan Lowenthal (D, LB-west OC), now in his 70s. Lowenthal is currently relegated to the House minority but may choose to remain longer than some expected if voters in November 2018 flip-the-House to a Dem majority. That could put Lowenthal in an enviable position as a possible House Committee chair in addition to playing a role in speculated Dem-led Trump impeachment proceedings if Dems get a House majority.
On April 11, the morning after defeating a single opponent who had only a few hundred dollars in campaign funding and no professional campaign assistance (after potential formidable opponent Robert Fox didn't enter the race following a filing-deadline-day meeting with Garcia), Mayor Garcia told PT columnist Tim Grobaty that he plans to embark on a nine-week tour (one stop per Council district), sometimes accompanied by city staff possibly including LB's police and fire chiefs, to "listen" and "affirm that what we do is working." This morning (April 12), Garcia issued a release announcing his nine-week tour and plugging the PT story.
Garcia's immediate political issue is a June 2018 ballot measure, in which he co-signed the ballot argument with LB's police and fire chiefs, seeking LB voter approval to impose sums on LB water and sewer bills to cover LB General Fund ("blank check") budget spending.
If, for whatever reasons, Garcia were to exit the Mayor's office prior to completing a second term, the vacancy will trigger a citywide, taxpayer-paid special election. Anyone could run for Mayor in the no-runoff special election, but if an incumbent LB Councilmember does so and wins, it would in turn create a Council vacancy with another costly special election needed to fill the Council seat.
Developing on multiple fronts.
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