Politics

LA mayor race heats up as primary approaches

Sunday, March 03, 2013

On the final Sunday before the primary election, the candidates running for Los Angeles mayor were focused on getting out the vote - and it will be key, as recent polls show it is a dead heat for the top two spots.

Some of the candidates made stops at area churches. Councilman Eric Garcetti spoke to the congregation at St. James Ame Church in South Los Angeles, urging them to make their voices heard.

"Two days before the election, (I) came out to tell people it's so important for us to vote in two days," Garcetti said. "The future of the city is not in my hands, it's in their hands."

Councilwoman Jan Perry attended the City of Refuge Church in Gardena. Her message was simple and to the point.

"Election day is this Tuesday. I need you, I need your vote, I need your focus, I need your attention, I need you to vote and I need you to take people to the polls with you to vote," Perry said.

Former technology executive Emanuel Pleitez hit the ground running. He traveled 19 miles through the city as part of his 100-mile citywide run and bike trek.

"The folks in City Hall - at least the folks I'm running against - have been there for over 30 years combined. They have led u s to highest unemployment rate in the country, the lowest high school graduation rate in the country and we're on the brink of bankruptcy," Pleitez said.

Former prosecutor Kevin James took his campaign message to voters at a friend's restaurant in Los Feliz.

"As mayor I want to make it a lot easier for small businesses across our city to move into our city, to expand and grow once they're here," James said.

After an early morning stop at a church, City Controller Wendy Greuel hit the Encino Farmers Market in Van Nuys.

"Kind of response I've been getting is just incredible," Greuel said.

With voter turnout expected to be low and a race involving several City Hall regulars and a long shot Republican, it is expected to end in a two-person runoff. That is expected to take place May 21.

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