Since Election Day, when Richard Bloom closed out the night with a slim lead of 218 votes over his opponent, incumbent Assemblywoman Betsy Butler, in the race for the 50th Assembly District, the mayor of Santa Monica has found himself in an unusual position.
John A. Pérez, speaker of the California Assembly, represents downtown Los Angeles and several communities east and south of the city center. Pérez spoke to The Journal in his office, beneath a large photograph of the Breed Street Shul in Boyle Heights, the neighborhood where his mother grew up.
Three events last week celebrated the inauguration of John Pérez as the California Assembly’s new speaker while also emphasizing his connection to Judaism. Although he is not Jewish, Pérez, the first openly LGBT person to be elected to one of the state’s most powerful leadership positions, enjoys ties to the Jewish world.