The Los Angeles Times has endorsed Eric for Mayor. This is a big moment for our campaign, and adds to our grassroots momentum. From theTimes:
The candidate with the most potential to rise to the occasion and lead Los Angeles out of its current malaise and into a more sustainable and confident future is Eric Garcetti.
Voters should be inspired by Garcetti's stewardship of Council District 13. He brought to his job a deft mixture of community organizing, development, outreach and leadership.
You can read the rest of the endorsement here. I've also included a longer excerpt after the jump. Make sure you share this with anyone you know who is still making up their mind about the campaign.
Los Angeles is an underachieving city led in recent decades by a succession of underachieving mayors - people who came in with big dreams or big talk but soon got bored with the day-to-day task of steering a municipality. Voters don't get to conduct a casting call or sift through hundreds of applicants until they identify the ideal candidate, but must instead choose from a field prescreened by the political and fundraising processes. This year that field fails to include a candidate who stands out as the obviously superior choice. The task for voters then becomes to scrutinize track records, eliminate the worst hazards and seek potential that can be forged, with the proper pressure and continued voter vigilance, into accomplishment.
The candidate with the most potential to rise to the occasion and lead Los Angeles out of its current malaise and into a more sustainable and confident future is Eric Garcetti
Voters must be frank with themselves about Garcetti, who as a member of the City Council for nearly 12 years and its president for six must bear some responsibility for the city's current fiscal problems, which were dramatically worsened when the council negotiated employee contracts that were unaffordable, leading to a budget too far out of balance, and leading, in turn, to deep cuts in services.
But frankness also requires scrutiny of Garcetti 's role in beginning to correct the problems. For the most part, he has performed well. As council president, he worked behind the scenes to awaken his colleagues to the depth of the city's financial crisis and to take action they did not want to take, imposing layoffs and requiring those remaining in the workforce to shoulder more of the burden of their medical and pension benefits. At times Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa should have been on hand to close difficult negotiations, the task was left to Garcetti, and he came through. He antagonized his allies in labor, not because he wanted to but because he saw that he had to. That fact undermines the too-common chatter that he lacks backbone.
His style as council president was not always satisfying to outside observers, who like to hear leaders talk tough or watch them crack heads. Garcetti used finesse. He knew who he was leading, he knew how to get from them what was needed and he knew how to count votes. He knew how to get the job done, and he did it — or at least as much of it as could be done at the time. Los Angeles will look in vain for its Ed Koch or its Richard Daley, because the job here simply isn't tailored for that kind of swagger. Successful mayors of Los Angeles - like Tom Bradley - must be experts in the art of finesse. Garcetti is such an expert.
They also must be experts in using the tools at their disposal to create a vibrant and livable city. Voters should be inspired by Garcetti's stewardship of Council District 13. His predecessors may have laid the foundation for the revival of Hollywood, but Garcetti closed the deal with creative land-use decisions and community outreach that returned an edgy spark to the neighborhood while attracting new business and providing new housing for families living on the margins. Under his guidance, Atwater Village has blossomed, Glassell Park is on the verge, Silver Lake and Echo Park are cultural touchstones, East Hollywood neighborhoods have claimed their identity. He added many acres of badly needed park space. He brought to his job a deft mixture of community organizing, development, outreach and leadership. He has not left everyone in his district happy, because he has made choices — and that's a good thing. It requires a measure of courage, and is an indication of leadership. Along the way he championed programs in his district to deter gang violence and fight quality-of-life crimes such as graffiti, and they became models for citywide successes.