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    News / With Audio

    For The Record: Here's What Congressional Candidate/Ass'ywoman Richardson Said At June 7 Compton Forum That Ignited Off-Mike Words, Visible Upset Between Her & State Senator Jenny Oropeza

    (June 10, 2007) --, your news outlet of record for the 37th Congressional district special election, provides below on-demand audio of the statement by Assemblywoman Laura Richardson (D., Carson-LB) at a June 7 Compton forum that ignited off-mike words and visible consternation between her and State Senator Jenny Oropeza (D., southbay).

    The Democrats and former LB Councilmembers are among 17 candidates (11 Dems, 4 Repubs, 1 Green & 1 Libertarian) on the June 26 special election ballot hoping to succeed the late Congresswoman Juanita Millender-McDonald (D. Carson-LB). first reported Assemblywoman Richardson's statement without comment on June 8 as part of our extended debate coverage. (To access our complete coverage, click here))

    Assemblywoman Richardson told the Compton forum:

    Assemblywoman Richardson: I'm going to fight for our community...This is about someone who says that no one can take our seat from us without us fighting every bit of the way for it. [applause] This is our community. This is our seat. And let me tell you something: why is it that with redistricting, Compton was removed out of the 55th [Carson-LB Assembly district]? We need people who want Compton, who will represent Compton and who will do everything humanly possible to make sure all of the cities in our community are represented and taken care of.

    To launch the audio, click Ass'ywoman Richardson June 7 statement at Compton forum. [Other media outlets please credit ""]

    The order of closing speakers had Assemblywoman Richardson speaking after Sen. Oropeza...meaning Oropeza wasn't able to respond on mike to Richardson's closing. But following Assemblywoman Richardson's closing, the two apparently had some words off-mike (inaudible to the audience) which began to careen into a verbal brouhaha until others intervened.

    A few minutes later, the two Democrats declined to join hands for a collective photo. When the forum ended, Sen. Oropeza left the room without comment, her jaw set and her eyes focused on the door. Assemblywoman Richardson was surrounded by supporters.

    Five days earlier at a June 2 Carson rally with her campaign volunteers, Assemblywoman Richardson said she was "tried of the press talkin' about this being a race thing," telling the crowd:

    Assemblywoman Richardson: Compton is going to deliver Laura, and Laura is going to deliver for Compton. [applause] Carson is going to deliver for Laura, and Laura is going to deliver for Carson. [applause, cheers] The Latino community is going to deliver for Laura [repeats her name with Spanish pronunciation] and Laura unequivocally is going to bust her tail for the Latino community. [applause] For the Asian community, Filipino. Cambodian, Samoan, all of the east Asian communities, they will come through and deliver for Laura, and Laura is going to deliver for those communities.

    And for everyone else who's represented here, Caucasian, African-American, etcetera, you know why it's so special for you to be here? It's because I'm sick and tired of the press talkin' about this being a race thing. This race is not about your ethnic background. This race is about who cares most about the community, who has a record of delivering for the community and who is the face of the community.

    And our face of the community is not the color of our skin. The face of our community is the fact that I've been working since I've been 12 years old. The face of our community is I've been working two jobs for the last ten years. The face of our community is I worked full time and went to school and cleaned toilets at UCLA to work my way through. That's our community. And so this race is about people who are rallying behind leadership that understands the community and is willing to deliver for them.

    To launch this audio, click Ass'ywoman Richardson at June 2 Carson rally campaign volunteers. [Other media outlets please credit ""]

    On May 29 at the first LB Congressional candidate encounter (the monthly LB Junior Chamber of Commerce "Beer & Politics" event), Assemblywoman Richardson and Senator Oropeza were all smiles.

    The special election is June 26...and if no candidate in the 17-candidate field receives over 50% of the vote, the top vote drawing candidate from each party will advance to an August 21 runoff.

    The 37th Congressional district (drawn by Sacramento Democrats in 2001) includes roughly 80% of LB. To view a District map, click here (2.1 MB pdf)

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