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Former candidate Pleitez endorses Garcetti for LA mayor
Update 3:40 p.m.: As many expected, Pleitez has endorsed councilman Eric Garcetti in his run for Los Angeles mayor.
The former candidate said Garcetti wants to "bring opportunity to every corner of the city."
Pleitez also praised the councilman for being "ready to tackle the biggest issues no matter how tough they are," and added that Garcetti also takes care of the basics, including good jobs and strong communities.
Garcetti described Pleitez as a "passionate campaigner" whose campaign he admired, and said the former mayor candidate was a "tremendous advocate for the people of Los Angeles."
"I think there's a real spark in this guy and his team," said Garcetti, complimenting Pleitez on his campaign's use of social media and ability to reach out to a wide range of voters.
"We're going to knock on doors," said the councilman. "We're not going to depend on the DWP unit to buy this race."
2 California Democrat congresswomen going to Rome for papal ceremony
Catholics from around the world will flock to Rome for next week's investiture of the new Pope. Vice-President Joe Biden is going, and House Speaker John Boehner is sending an official Congressional delegation to represent the United States. The group includes a pair of California Congresswomen: Catholic Congresswomen Loretta Sanchez of Garden Grove and Anna Eshoo of San Mateo.
Speaker Boehner, who is Catholic, will not be going since the House is voting on the GOP budget next week. But he says the installation of Pope Francis, the first pontiff ever to hail from the Americas, "is a milestone in world history and an event of monumental significance to the millions of Americans who share in the Catholic faith.”
Boehner says the bipartisan group of members will join the Vice President in communicating the "prayers and warm regards of the American people to Pope Francis as he begins his papacy.”
Emily's List backs Wendy Greuel for mayor of Los Angeles
The campaign of Wendy Greuel, who could become the city of Los Angeles’ first female mayor, was endorsed Friday by Emily’s List — a national advocacy group dedicated to electing pro-choice Democratic women.
Speaking on the First Street steps of City Hall, Greuel accepted the endorsement by announcing that she would create a Council on Women and Girls within the Mayor’s Office. The council would have at least one paid staffer, Greuel said.
“At a time when there could be no women on our city council, we need to make sure that women have a voice in making the decisions that define Los Angeles,” Greuel said.
Councilwoman Jan Perry, who finished fourth in last week's mayoral election, is the only woman on the Los Angeles City Council. When she leaves office in July, it's possible that the city council could be all-male. One woman, Ana Cubas, is in the May runoff for the Ninth District seat. Two women are the leading candidates for an open seat in the Sixth District, but that race could possibly not be settled until July.
Maven's Morning Coffee: Eli Broad interested in LA Times, personnel changes at Animal Services, the future of AEG
Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, public meetings and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.
The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.
Today is Friday, March 15, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:
The Hollywood Reporter says Eli Broad is joining with former Deputy Mayor Austin Beutner to make a bid for the Los Angeles Times. According to the piece, Beutner wants to run The Times as a nonprofit.
In an exclusive interview, Cardinal Roger Mahony tells the Daily News that the selection of Pope Francis is "an extraordinary grace."
Los Angeles Animal Services' nighttime animal care technicians will be taken off night duty, reports the Daily News. "Critics said the decision to strip six shelters of nighttime personnel could imperil thousands of shelter animals, which would be without supervision," according to the newspaper.
California lawmakers unmoved by President Obama's Capitol Hill diplomacy
President Obama continued his diplomatic offensive on Capitol Hill today, meeting with House Democrats. Earlier this week he met with House and Senate Republicans, as well as Democratic Senators. Some members of the California delegation have mixed reactions to the President’s mission.
President Obama spent Wednesday afternoon with House Republicans, like John Campbell of Irvine. Campbell describes the conversation as "certainly respectful," but he says no differences were bridged. The president took questions on everything from immigration to the Keystone pipeline to the impasse over the budget. Campbell says Mr. Obama didn't offer anything new "and I don't think we really offered anything new."
The president should have had an easier time Thursday, preaching to the choir of fellow Democrats in the House. But Long Beach Democrat Alan Lowenthal says "he told the choir, 'hey, we're going to compromise.'" Congressman Lowenthal says the President told Democrats to be open to entitlement reform – like raising the age for Medicare and changing the inflation calculation for Social Security benefits – if Republicans agree to close tax loopholes.
Can the President’s visit can break the logjam in Congress? "All you can do is hope," says Lowenthal. Campbell says it hasn't changed a thing.
The visits to Capitol Hill may be good practice for the President’s diplomatic mission next week to the Middle East.