Is he or isn't he? We were the first to report he is and now the rest of the media is getting on board.
The dean of the City Hall reporters, Rick Orlov, notes developer Rick Caruso's flirtation with running for Mayor and even gives us props for staying on the beat. Orlov postulates that Caruso may have some trouble with the African American community because he was on the Police Commission when they declined Bernard Parks' bid for a second and of course because he once called Maxine Waters a name that rhymes with, uh, rich.
I told you previously that two big name local politicans are set to endorse Caruso over Villaraigosa. Last time I hinted that one of them has a mustache. I'll tell you the other one has an M in their name.
If Caruso runs he won't be alone in challenging the status quo. Ron Kaye broke the news that longtime civic activitst and DWP Commissioner Nick Patsaouras has announced he will run against Council Member Wendy Greuel for City Controller.
Caruso could have an uphill battle in his effort to topple Mayor Villaraigosa because he's rich, a Republican and worst of all, a developer! But alas, Cal State Fullerton political scientist Raphael Sonenshein told the LA Times "That said, I wouldn't write off Caruso. First of all, when you have lots of money, you can control your own fate in many ways. The question is: Is the disappointment with Villaraigosa so widespread?"
Capitol Alert examines the story and the impact a competitive race will have on Villaraigosa's designs to run for Governor in 2010. A bruising primary and general election battle will drain the Mayor's war chest and put him quite a bit behind potential Democratic gubernatorial opponents Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsom. Sidenote: Caruso donated $12,000 to Brown.
Uber-liberal blog Calitics declares that a Caruso victory "would be simply horrendous for the biggest city in the state" describing the developer as "a right-wing Bush Republican developer who created the great eyesore that is The Grove in Los Angeles along with Americana at Brand in Glendale." Are they afraid Caruso won't fill the potholes?
"Talented Earthquake Productions" urges Caruso not to run, saying that "Antonio is doing a solid job. He may not be the transformational Mayor we all want and sort of expect from him, but he hasn't made any major mistakes." Advice from the old, dead, Republican Mayor: If you stop expecting politicians to be "transformational figures" you won't be disappointed when you find out they are not.