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Letters: Picking L.A.'s next mayor

February 20, 2013

Re "2 big boosts for a long shot," Feb. 16

It's unwise to downplay L.A. mayoral candidate Kevin James' chances.

In 1993, Republican Richard Riordan captured one-third of the first-round vote against three Democrats; he went on to win. It is this model that James seeks to replicate, with the recent endorsement of the former two-term mayor.

Just four years ago, an underfunded Republican named Walter Moore received more than one-fourth of the vote and nearly pushed incumbent Antonio Villaraigosa into a June runoff. This was a race that should have been no race at all. Villaraigosa was exposed as an unpopular mayor who avoided a serious opponent.

With candidates Eric Garcetti, Jan Perry and Wendy Greuel all competing for the same Democratic voters, James could stun the political establishment and proceed to a second round of balloting.

Nicholas J. Antonicello

Venice Beach

Re "Texan donor backs James," Feb. 18

Why would the people of Los Angeles want an 81-year-old Texas billionaire choosing their next mayor? I am really amazed that Harold Simmons would think that his "special interests" from Texas should play any role in choosing L.A.'s mayor.

Simmons' only reason for donating $600,000 to a group supporting James seems to be the fact that James is the only Republican in the race and Simmons wants to "plant a flag" in California. No thought is given to what is best for Los Angeles.

James could very well be the best choice, but not because a Texas billionaire made that decision for Los Angeles.

Candice Weber

Calabasas

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