Recall effort against Councilman Kevin de León is withdrawn

L.A. City Councilman Kevin de León speaks at a lectern.
A recall effort against L.A. City Councilman Kevin de León, shown in September, has been withdrawn. Organizers say they intend to relaunch the effort in January.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

A petition for the recall of Los Angeles City Councilman Kevin de León was terminated at the request of its leading proponent, but the effort could begin anew in January.

The petition was terminated on Friday after Pauline Adkins, who was leading the recall effort, requested its termination, according to the Los Angeles City Clerk Election Division.

Adkins said on Facebook that she withdrew the petition because one of the five proponents chose to be removed from the petition, forcing the recall campaign to withdraw, since the law requires five proponents on the petition. She added that the recall campaign is “far from over” and that the group will attempt to relaunch the effort in January.


Adkins and the other recall proponents said they began the campaign in part over anger about De León’s efforts to build tiny home villages in Eagle Rock and Highland Park as interim housing amid a historic homelessness and affordable-housing crisis in Los Angeles.

In a statement to City News Service on Monday, De León said: “This misguided recall effort failed because voters refused to allow the recall process to be weaponized to subvert the electoral process and overturn election results. Residents recognize the real work that we’re doing to address homelessness, develop affordable housing and clean up our district. If anything, this experience demonstrates why our recall process needs to be changed so that we don’t continue to enable this kind of political exploitation in the future at the expense of taxpayers.”

Anger over homelessness is helping to fuel the effort to recall L.A. Councilman Mike Bonin. Recall backers said they submitted more than 39,000 signatures seeking his removal.

Nov. 10, 2021

Earlier this month, De León opened the largest tiny home village in the U.S. on a 6.8-acre site along the Arroyo Seco Parkway in Highland Park, providing 224 non-congregate beds as transitional residences.

De León’s office touted the project for its quick completion within 90 days and for costing less, at $55,000 per tiny home, than most other homeless housing options in the county.

When the campaign against De León was announced in July, he was the third council member to be the target of a recall, following Councilman Mike Bonin and Councilwoman Nithya Raman.

The effort against Raman ended on Sept. 13 after the group said it would not meet its Nov. 4 deadline, but a petition against Bonin was turned in to the city clerk on Wednesday with what recall proponents say are enough signatures to get on the ballot.