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Watch Eric Garcetti, Wendy Greuel at Times/USC debate at 5:30 p.m.

May 05, 2013|By James Rainey
  • Los Angeles mayoral candidates Wendy Greuel, right, and Eric Garcetti chat before they squared off in a debate at the Louis B. Mayer Auditorium at USC's Health Sciences Campus.
Los Angeles mayoral candidates Wendy Greuel, right, and Eric Garcetti… (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles…)

The two candidates for mayor of Los Angeles have another shot at engaging voters in a debate tonight at 5:30 that will be streamed live on latimes.com and broadcast on KTLA-TV (Channel 5).

City Councilman Eric Garcetti and City Controller Wendy Greuel will take questions from the audience at USC’s Galen Center and two moderators—Jim Newton, a columnist and editor-at-large for the Los Angeles Times, and Dan Schnur, director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at USC.

The 90-minute session comes with a little more than two weeks left before the May 21 runoff election. The winner replaces Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, whose tenure ends June 30 after the maximum two terms in office.

The two months of campaigning since the first round of voting March 5 have been dominated by the candidates accusing each other of being unable to act independently of the city’s influential employee unions.

Garcetti has said that Greuel would kowtow to the union representing Department of Water and Power employees, which has donated $1.45 million to an independent committee that has spent $3.6 million to elect Greuel. Greuel counters that Garcetti has shown plenty of give when it comes to DWP employees, including approving their substantial pay raises.

The moderators and audience will doubtless try to push the candidates for more specifics on other topics that polls have shown to be at the forefront in voters' minds—particularly education and traffic.

Coverage of the debate at latimes.com will include live Twitter commentary by the Times’s political team at #LATDebates.

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Twitter: @latimesrainey

james.rainey@latimes.com

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