Sen. Villaraigosa?

Antonio Villaraigosa, wikimediaFormer L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is looking for voters to promote him to U.S. senator in 2016. The Times ran an analysis of his pluses and minuses.

Basically, his strength is that he’s a Latino candidate who could count on Southern California Latino voters in a presidential election year, which tends to be more Democratic and liberal.

The minus is that Latinos don’t turn out to vote as much as most other major Democratic groups. For example, in the 2012 presidential election, nationwide blacks actually turned out to vote at a larger percentage rate than whites. Some of that was because President Obama is black. But there also were major get-out-the-vote efforts among blacks.

So Villaraigosa  would have to start early, as the Obama campaign did, with a “ground game” to get out voters favorable to him.

The Times article did not note that another problem might be that one primary opponent could be Rep. Loretta Sanchez of Santa Ana. If both ran, the Latino vote could be split.

Villaraigosa also could have a problem with his tenure as mayor, 2005-13, which coincided with the Great Recession, from which Los Angeles only partially has recovered. As former Mayor Richard Riordan explained to CalWatchDog.com in 2012, Villaraigosa’s policies put L.A. at risk for bankruptcy.

The city economy also will be slammed by jobs killed from the minimum wage for hotel workers going to $15.37 an hour. And current Mayor Eric Garcetti wants to kill even more jobs by raising the overall city minimum wage to $13.25 by 2017.

Another recession could tip it over the edge before Nov. 2016, with Villaraigosa getting at least some of the blame for making the City of Angels into Detroit on the Pacific.

Then there’s Villaraigosa’s messy private life, which makes Bill Clinton look like Ozzie Nelson.



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