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Rep. Karen Bass is being urged to run for L.A. mayor. She won’t consider it ‘at this time’

Rep. Karen Bass, seen in 2020, is being urged by some to run for L.A. mayor, a Bass spokesman said.
(Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)

In the last year, Los Angeles Rep. Karen Bass has been eyed as a possible contender for U.S. Senate and vice president.

Now, another office is opening up. Might Bass want to run for L.A. mayor?

“People have asked her to consider it,” Zach Seidl, a spokesman for Bass, told The Times on Tuesday. “She is not considering running for mayor at this time. Her plan right now is to run for reelection to her House seat in 2022.”

Bass, a Democrat, gave a similar answer last month when she was asked about possibly entering the race. “Not at this time,” she told The Times.

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Mark Gonzalez, chair of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, said the congresswoman would be a formidable candidate. The rumor mill among Democrats is that she’s interested, Gonzalez said, but he did not know if that was true.

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“I look forward to getting that call if it’s true,” he added.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Bass “has signaled she is open to running” for mayor in 2022, citing two people familiar with her thinking.

Bass, 67, is a longtime ally of Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas, who is contemplating his own mayoral bid and also represents part of South Los Angeles.

Supporters of the two politicians said they could not envision a scenario where they would run against each other for the same citywide office.

Bass, a six-term congresswoman, represents a district that takes in Culver City, South Los Angeles, Mid-City, and Palms.

Those already running for mayor include City Attorney Mike Feuer, Councilman Joe Buscaino and Mel Wilson, a businessman and former Metropolitan Transportation Authority board member.

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Times staff writers Jennifer Haberkorn in Washington, D.C., and Benjamin Oreskes in Los Angeles contributed to this report.


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