Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Tony Cardenas bids adieu to Los Angeles, heads to Congress

Mercer 14447

via cd6.lacity.org

L.A. City Councilman Tony Cardenas will represent a newly created Congressional district in the eastern part of the San Fernando Valley. He will be sworn into office on Jan. 3.

The Los Angeles City Council on Friday said goodbye to Tony Cardenas, who is leaving the council after nine years to serve in Washington, D.C. 

The councilman will resign his seat on Jan. 2. The next day he will be sworn into Congress as a representative from the eastern part of the San Fernando Valley. Cardenas was joined by his wife Norma as state and city leaders spoke on his behalf in the council chamber.

“Some of us get so consumed in public life, so consumed and driven by this responsibility, that we forget the other side of our life — the family life," said Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. "Tony’s never forgotten that, and that’s important because that’s what drives him."

Cardenas was elected to represent the San Fernando Valley’s Sixth District in 2003. That was after his unsuccessful run for the council’s Second District in 2002. He lost that race to Wendy Greuel. Today, the City Controller and mayoral candidate — whom Cardenas has endorsed — was among the speakers praising the congressman-elect.

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Redistricting has turned this election season upside down

LA City Councilmember Tony Cardenas on truancy

Tami Abdollah / KPCC

Los Angeles City Councilman Tony Cardenas is running virtually unopposed for Congress in the new 29th District in the San Fernando Valley.

You’ve probably heard about the contentious race between Congressmen Brad Sherman and Howard Berman. The two Democratic incumbents were pushed into a re-election contest because of redistricting. That’s just one of many examples of how new boundaries are affecting the 2012 election. 

In 2008, a voter-approved proposition removed responsibility for redistricting from politicians, who historically protected incumbents. About 30,000 people applied to be named to the 14-member Citizens Redistricting Commission. The 2012 election is the first result of its labor. 

Consequently, the San Fernando Valley is on the cusp of electing its first Latino member of Congress.

Los Angeles City Councilman Tony Cardenas finished the June primary with 64 percent of the vote. He will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot against perennial candidate David Hernandez.

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