Margolin Campaign Panel Raises $80,000 : Congress: The assemblyman has not decided if he will run for national office next year. His decision will hinge on reapportionment.


If his fund-raising efforts are any indication, state Assemblyman Burt Margolin (D-Los Angeles) is preparing to run for Congress next year.

In the first six months of 1991, Margolin collected $80,000 in donations to a congressional campaign committee, according to a federal campaign report filed earlier this month with the California secretary of state’s office.

Margolin, 40, said he has formed the exploratory committee “to look into the possibility of running for Congress next year.” He said the likely candidacy of Rep. Mel Levine (D-Los Angeles) for the U.S. Senate “creates the opening” for him to consider a congressional campaign.


He added that he is “interested in running for a seat that would have a reasonable hope of electing a Democrat.”

Margolin is a prominent member of Los Angeles’ Waxman-Berman political organization, named for Democratic Reps. Henry Waxman and Howard Berman. A former aide to both men, Margolin first won his Assembly seat in 1982. His district encompasses portions of Burbank, North Hollywood, Universal City and Hollywood.

Other Democrats who have been mentioned in political circles as potential candidates for Levine’s seat are state Sen. Herschel Rosenthal (D-Los Angeles), Assemblyman Tom Hayden (D-Santa Monica), and Los Angeles City Councilman Zev Yaroslavsky.

Margolin, chairman of the Assembly Finance and Insurance Committee, said his decision to run for Congress will hinge on the outcome of the current redrawing of congressional boundaries. The Legislature is scheduled to complete its version of a reapportionment plan and send it to Gov. Pete Wilson by Sept. 13.

Margolin said he will wait to make up his mind about his political future until after Wilson acts on the redistricting bill.