Los Angeles city councilor opposes resignation over racism scandal

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two Los Angeles city councilors opposed overwhelming calls to resign on Thursday for participating in barefoot pranks at a closed meeting where a colleague was recorded making crude and racist remarks. Gil Cedillo and Kevin de Leon are to follow the lead of former parliamentary chairman Nouri Martinez, who resigned on Wednesday for comparing another colleague’s black son to a monkey, belittle the Mexicans of Oaxaca, and made vile remarks about Armenians and Jews. I applied pressure. The committee’s Friday meeting was canceled after Acting Committee Chair Mitch O’Farrell said members could not conduct business until the two resigned. Loud protesters stopped the meeting on Wednesday. “There is so much pain, there are so many wounds to the soul and to the spirit of this city,” said O’Farrell. The city council chairman announced her decision in a press release that did not mention her leaked recordings or apologize for what she said. Martinez described herself on her website as “a proud daughter of working-class immigrants, a glass-ceiling-breaking leader that brings her deep life experiences.” She is the daughter of Mexican immigrants, born and raised in the San Fernando Valley. Cedillo, de Leon and Martinez were part of discussions with strong Latino labor leaders last year. Redraw the city council district boundaries. A once-in-a-decade redistricting process can force one group to compete with another for political advantage in elections, O’Farrell said. In the recorded conversation, Martinez said to Councilor Mike Bonin, “You bastard.” She described his black son’s behavior on a parade float when he was two as “pares changuito” or “monkey-like,” the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday. Ugly and vulgar remarks against Jews and Armenians by Native immigrants from Saka State, the release of this week’s recording sparked outrage and fellow Democrats called for the resignation of all three lawmakers, which led to Wednesday’s West Coast campaign From President Joe Biden, who arrived in Los Angeles as part of the visit, Martinez did not apologize for her comments in a resignation statement, but in a statement to her daughter she added that she recently did not live up to expectations.” You may request to resign voluntarily. Members cannot be expelled and members are suspended only if criminal charges are pending. Lawmakers can be blamed, but that doesn’t lead to suspension or dismissal. O’Farrell said he spoke with Cedilo and “I have a feeling he’s making some progress towards that decision.” O’Farrell said he and others didn’t get to de Leon. Cedillo failed re-election this year and was already due to leave Parliament in December. De Leon is running for re-election in 2024. Outrage over the recording threw the city council into chaos. About 50 protesters on Wednesday drowned the acting president, chanting “no meeting without resignation” and other slogans. At least 10 of the 15 members required for a quorum were gathered. However, the meeting was postponed when spokeswoman Marqueece Harris-Dawson left the company for being out of control, a spokeswoman said. None of the three cornered councilors showed up. We close you!” The noisy crowd cheered when the lights went out. Also on Wednesday, California Attorney General Rob Bonta, another Democrat, said he would investigate the process of redistricting Los Angeles. He said this could lead to civil liability or criminal prosecution, depending on what was found. Loyola Law School professor Jessica Levinson, who was previously a member of the City of Los Angeles Ethics Committee, said in the recording she saw no evidence that would trigger criminal charges. But even if the current map is used to elect new city councilors next month, she said, investigations could force a redraw of city council districts, she said. The basis of race,” Levinson said. “If this line turns out to be illegally drawn in the end, it’s practically … a disaster, but we need a remedy for it.” Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer has called for an independent commission to map redistricting. .____Associated Press authors Don Thompson of Sacramento, John Antczak of Los Angeles, and Julie Watson of San Diego contributed to this report.
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