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Thursday, March 31, 2005

LA Times Endorsement Limbo

Ken Reich at Take back the Times has an interesting note on the LA Times endorsement situation:

As the Los Angeles Mayoral runoff campaign continues, the Los Angeles Times editorial page, under the unsteady leadership of Michael Kinsley, continues its perplexing failure to follow through on its earlier endorsement of City Councilman Antonio Villaraigosa.

In what looked like a savvy move at the time, during the primary campaign, the LAT endorsed both Villaraigosa and former Assembly Speaker Bob Hertzberg for spots in the runoff, wisely rejecting the reelection of the inept present mayor, James Hahn.

So, then, when Hertzberg failed narrowly to make the runoff, and Hahn did, running behind Villaraigosa, one would have thought the reasonable course would have been for the Times to say, "Well, one of our choices made it to the runoff, Villaraigosa, and he is our choice in the runoff."
...

Now, judging from the latest mayoral editorial in the paper Tuesday, March 29, the Times has more good to say about Hertzberg than either Villaraigosa or Hahn, and doesn't even mention that it once supported Villaraigosa.

...

The Tribune Co. continues to intensify its weakness in Los Angeles by making it clear it is not willing to take steps to show that it wants the Times to continue to be a respected paper.


Now, in the mayor's race, the Times continues to appear irresolute. Even its regular political coverage of the race is less voluminous than in past mayoral contests, reducing respect for the regular political writers.


However, the coverage there has been makes it clear that Hahn is waging a somewhat racist campaign, trying to suggest that the Latino Villaraigosa is too dishonest to be mayor. It's not as bad as the Yorty campaign against the black Tom Bradley in 1969, but there is a little odor about it, and Times editorials should have denounced it.

Come on, Kinsley, stiffen up. Show some courage for once, and go along with your original course: Villaraigosa for mayor.

16 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said:

A point of clarification: it would appear that you want the Times to continue to endorse ADV, but in the same breathe you appear to have no respect for the Times’ opinion. Are we to deduce that you want the endorsement simply to have it? Wouldn’t it cut both ways? In that, as you point out, many have also lost all respect for the paper and vote against any suggestion proffered by the paper?

In all seriousness – what is your opinion of the value of any endorsement by this “paper.”

March 31, 2005 10:50 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Good post, 10:50. Answer that Chief Parker.

March 31, 2005 11:02 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

It could be that under Michael Kinsley the LAT is finally re-thinking it's position on Antonio Villaraigosa. For too long the MIA councilmember has been given a pass by our city's largest newspaper. I hear questions are being raised about Jessica Garrison's coverage of Antonio. Who knows - maybe we will see the LAT show an act of some courage and come out and endorse Hahn and admit that its fawning coverage of recent years has been the work of two lovesick ladies - Ms. Garrison and Ms. Gold.

March 31, 2005 11:24 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The only way I could ever recover any respect for the Times.

April 01, 2005 1:01 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Riech artical, Good, except that I find your logic faulty.
It would seem that the La times endorsed the charming Latino candidate and the brighter Jewish candidate prior to runoff. Afraid to go with the best guy for the city Huggy.(Played it safe, how can you not suport the Latino in LA)
Huggy would have not had to deal with the racist nonsense, especially with his Latina wife, he would have gone toe to toe and won.

World as it is,Please do not insult us by suggesting that the word dishonest is racist. In the 14th district the words that are used are much stronger in regards to the councilman by the Latino residents.
The words, charming and bright were not racist,rather fairly commonly used in talking about these two men.
The LA Times has lost a great deal of respect, they should have just endorsed Huggy, but used reverse racism and pandering to the public.
Of the two candidates in the runoff the least dishonest is not raza. More important of the two remaing choices to serve the city, the most honest and least self serving is Hanh and that is not racist.
A Chicano dud from the 14th.

April 01, 2005 1:28 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The LAT and especially groupie Jessica Villargarisson has been extremely bias and unfair. Jessica's puff pieces on Antonio made me throw up. Maybe now they have an editorial staff that want credible journalism and are finally going to start reporting the facts on Antonio. After they start doing that I can't see them endorsing him. Antonio and his camp are pulling an O.J.using the "race card." Get over it! We too damn smart for that crap

April 01, 2005 6:18 AM  

Blogger Anon-in-the-know said:

One has only to re-read the Times original dual endorsement to see that the ADV portion of it was barely passing. They led with Hertzberg, dedicated twice as much space to him as to ADV, and had mostly positive things to say about the "big ideas" guy.

Their nod at Villaraigosa, however, was almost embarrassing in what it didn't say, as if the paper was suggesting, "we'd like him to to get another shot at the race so we can take a better look at him - outside in the light."

Now, the Times, and all the people of L.A. have that opportunity for several months. The more light that shines on him, and on his record of doing very little (if anything), of substance for his district in nearly two years, the better. The fact that a majority of voters appear unhappy with some of the things Hahn has done as mayor doesn't logically lead to the conclusion that they will trade him in for someone who can't say more than two questionable sentence about that he's done to earn his hefty city salary since 2003.

April 01, 2005 10:14 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Anon in the know

RIGHT ON TARGET. Its not worth trading for a clueless absentee councilman with no experience

April 01, 2005 10:42 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

If you take Mayor Hahn's Airport Plan as an example, portions of the plan are acceptable (increase safety of operations) others were rejected by neighboring cities and myself(!) opposed to increasing the number of flights. I still support James Hahn for reelection because he can accept this and work with the other affected cities in the region. Miguel Mena

April 01, 2005 11:42 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

JOB #1 is show up... some jobs you can't phone in from D.C. or backslapping political conferences that have little to do with the problems your district faces day-to-day.

JOB #2 is listen... ADV has been the least accessible, least visible of any councilmember in recent history (TV interviews and "crappy little speeches" from the Dem convention don't count).

April 01, 2005 11:43 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Steve Lopez called Antonio's ideas "hallucinations" and the rest of the editorial board is trying to decide if Steve Lopez is right or should we all drink the punch and join in the hallucination.

Remember, drugs are for people who can't handle reality.

Maybe the entire City needs to feel good and forget about reality.

April 01, 2005 12:12 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Even Garrison, in her adoring puff piece pointed out how little ADV has done on City Council. . .

"In his first year, he proposed just one major policy initiative, to negotiate drug discounts for city residents. Ten months later, the plan has yet to emerge from committee."

And if anyone has been sipping the punch in Times coverage, it's her.

April 01, 2005 12:45 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

She needs to do a story on the 80 Neighborhood Watches and the 3-12 time, with a interview of the Hollenbeck Dept.

LA TIMES 1-213-237-7000-
ask for her or call her cell 323-383-2406

April 01, 2005 1:02 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Speaking of being in ENDORSEMENT LIMBO -- Months into the campaign, weeks into the runoff, ADV still does not have a SINGLE Eastside community leader, Latino or otherwise, listed among the community leaders supporting him for mayor. Hertzberg had many even before the pre-primary; Hahn has many Eastsiders listed now.

WHAT DOES THIS SAY about how ADV works with people who want to get things DONE in the city, especially in his own back yard?

Speaks volumes... endorsed by individuals who DON'T know him, HAVEN'T worked with him; shunned by those who DO know him and have TRIED to work with him, but can't.

April 01, 2005 1:11 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Bad call, 1:02 p.m. No way Gullible Garrison could get that story right, even it you spoonfed it to her. She'd end up believing the lies and saying that every person who attends any kind of neighborhood watch meeting is a complete "neighborhood watch" themselves -- that's how ADV's people are counting them. They've helped set up 2-3 groups (TOTAL, in TWO YEARS) with a couple dozen people's names on each sign-up sheet, and that would be "proof" enough for her that it was true.

Remember Garrison was the ditz that said ADV won the GENERAL election (not the primary) in 2001 in her homage to hero-Antonio a few weeks ago.

April 01, 2005 1:16 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The Los Angeles Times has always hated the Hahn Family because 30 years ago Supervisor Hahn voted against a major development project that they were partners in.

April 03, 2005 2:38 PM  

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