Politics, government and public life for Southern California

VIDEO: Salma Hayek praises Eric Garcetti for...finding her wallet at the North Pole?!

Earlier this week, actress Salma Hayek released a video singing the praises of mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti. On Thursday, the campaign released a second video in which the actress describes an encounter with Garcetti … at the North Pole.

About a decade ago, Garcetti and Hayek were part of a group that headed north to bring attention to global warming’s impact on the Inuits. What Hayek found most impressive about the councilman was his determination to find her lost wallet in the snow.

“He came back and he had found my small black dot wallet in the middle of the desert snow and the most impressive part is that all the money was in it,” Hayek says in the video.

So, how does that relate to Garcetti’s run for mayor of Los Angeles? Aside from the fact that he won’t steal your money if he finds your wallet?


Garcetti campaign announces endorsements from entertainment industry

Eric Garcetti

Howard Pasamanick

Councilman Eric Garcetti has represented the Hollywood area for 12 years. Today, his mayoral campaign announced support from some of the industry's biggest CEOs.

Eric Garcetti has represented Hollywood since 2001 and on Wednesday his mayoral campaign released the names of 200 actors, producers and writers who are supporting him for the city’s top billing.

The list of endorsements follows the recent release of a video in which actress Salma Hayek sings Garcetti’s praises. The councilman’s supporters include former Disney CEO Michael Eisner, David Nevins, president of entertainment at Showtime, and Irving Azoff of Live Nation Entertainment. 

“I am proud to have earned support from so many Hollywood leaders,” Garcetti said in a statement. “More than a half-million jobs in our community are tied to our entertainment industry, and I will make sure we are always the entertainment capital of the world."

However, Hollywood's support for Garcetti has not coalesced into an independent political action committee as is the case with his main opponent, Wendy Greuel. A group called Working Californians, comprised of several Hollywood executives and the DWP employees' union, is raising money on behalf of Greuel. 


Garcetti campaign spins lack of endorsement from LA County Democrats

Eric Garcetti Twitter

Garcetti Campaign

The Garcetti campaign tweeted this picture after the Los Angeles County Democratic Party declined to endorse him in the 2013 mayor's race.

Well, this is one way to turn lemons into lemonade.

The Los Angeles County Democratic Party decided Tuesday night not to make an endorsement in the L.A. mayor’s race, which is nonpartisan. However, that didn’t stop Eric Garcetti from touting a “victory.”

“I'm honored to have received the most votes from LA County Democratic Party delegates!” he sent from his campaign Twitter account. The Tweet was accompanied by a photo of Garcetti with the caption: “Thank you Democrats!”

And he’s correct – as least as far as the numbers.

In the first round of voting, Garcetti received 84 votes. That’s compared to Wendy Greuel’s 76 and Jan Perry’s 15. In the next round, with Perry out of the picture, Garcetti had 83 votes to Greuel’s 75. (Republican Kevin James did not seek the group’s endorsement; Emanuel Pleitez was not present.) However, those figures weren’t enough to get either candidate an endorsement from the party.


Major women's group backs Eric Garcetti for mayor

Eric Garcetti

Howard Pasamanick

Eric Garcetti was endorsed Tuesday by the California National Organization for Women PAC.

The California chapter of the National Organization for Women endorsed Eric Garcetti Tuesday in his bid to become Los Angeles’ next mayor.

NOW declined to endorse either of the leading female candidates – Jan Perry and Wendy Greuel. Los Angeles has never had a female mayor. 

The NOW chapter’s president, Patricia Bellasalma, pointed to Garcetti’s work on domestic violence and gender equality as the basis of the endorsement.

“We asked which candidate has the vision needed to move Los Angeles forward and who would be most willing to create a more equal playing field for the city’s almost 2 million women and girls. The answer to that question – without hesitation – was Eric Garcetti,” she said.

RELATED: Los Angeles 2013 Mayoral Race Endorsements

Last May, Greuel's campaign announced the formation of "Women for Wendy," a committee that the candidate said would help "get one step closer to breaking that glass ceiling and electing our city’s first woman mayor.” 


Los Angeles Mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti looks to connect with Latino voters

Eric Garcetti

Eric Garcetti campaign

L.A. City Councilman and mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti is leading among Latino voters, according to a recent survey. He is also the only major candidate who can claim some Latino heritage.

A high turnout of Latino voters in 2005 helped make Antonio Villaraigosa L.A.'s first Latino mayor in modern times and then helped re-elect him in 2009.

Though none of the major mayoral candidates in the 2013 campaign has a Spanish surname, one candidate is working to remind Latino voters of their shared ethnicity – and that’s City Councilman Eric Garcetti.

Garcetti is Mexican-American on his father’s side, though some fellow Latino politicians have questioned his background. Assembly Speaker John Perez of Los Angeles told KPCC: “There isn’t a Latino candidate running for mayor that I know of.”

And L.A. City Councilman Jose Huizar said of Garcetti: “He says he’s Latino but, you know, that’s for the voters to see or the constituents to see.”

Garcetti, sitting for a recent interview in his council office, recited his paternal ancestry: “Both of my father’s parents were proudly Mexican-American, both spoke Spanish as their first language. My grandfather was born in Mexico, my grandmother’s parents were from Mexico.”