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In twist, DWP union-backed candidate turns up at Garcetti event

April 20, 2013|By David Zahniser

The employee union for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has made mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti political enemy No. 1, running TV ads attacking him and spending heavily on his opponent, Wendy Greuel.

But that didn't prevent one of the DWP union's other candidates from showing up this week at a campaign event for Garcetti. John Choi, seeking to replace Garcetti on the City Council, stood Friday with other Garcetti supporters at a news conference announcing the endorsement of Garcetti by U.S. Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Los Angeles) and immigrant rights advocates.

Choi said he has not endorsed in the May 21 mayoral election but applauds Garcetti's work in helping immigrants obtain city services -- a topic of the news conference.

“I’m here to support the councilman in his efforts to create an office of immigrant affairs,” Choi said. “I think it’s a great idea.”

Working Californians, the campaign group heavily backed by the DWP union, has spent $56,000 on Choi as he runs against former Garcetti deputy Mitch O'Farrell in an Echo Park-to-Hollywood district. The group has also put $3 million into the effort for Greuel.

During Friday's event, Garcetti repeated his assertion that the DWP union and "downtown power brokers" are trying to "buy this election." Choi, for his part, would not say whether he agreed with Working Californians' choice in the mayor's race.

Asked if he was planning to endorse in the mayor's race, he added: "We haven’t announced anything yet, but we will be soon."

Garcetti spokesman Jeff Millman said there is "no endorsement announcement at this time" involving either candidate seeking to replace Garcetti.


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