Until last week, Los Angeles mayoral challenger Antonio Villaraigosa had received unchallenged campaign mileage from touting his role in Proposition 1A, the $9.2 billion school bond that voters approved in November 1998. Villaraigosa had been state Assembly speaker when the Legislature put it on the ballot.
For more than a generation, racial and ethnic politics have dominated Los Angeles' mayoral elections. That is, perhaps, until this year, which might be the first election of Los Angeles' emerging post-ethnic era.
Trust current mayoral candidate and State Assembly Speaker Emeritus Antonio Villaraigosa to come up with a uniquely strategic location for his storefront headquarters.
The more time I spend trailing the Los Angeles mayoral candidates, the more I find myself musing about rehabilitating the commissariat as a form of government. Or, failing such "Red Dawn"/"Red Alert" scenarios, perhaps we might seek something akin to the national unity administration now under contemplation in Israel. I say this not just to be provocative -- well not only. It just strikes me as a huge waste of precious talent, integrity and commitment to be forced by a winner-takes-all electoral system to have to pick just one of these outstanding people for mayor while jettisoning the others.