City Councilwoman Jan Perry endorsed Eric Garcetti to be Los Angeles’ next mayor on Thursday, saying her support was prompted by two factors – Garcetti’s track record in his city council district and sending a message to the special interests that poured millions of dollars into supporting City Controller Wendy Greuel in the mayoral primary.
“It would have been easy for me to sit on the sidelines and let the chips fall where they may,” after coming in fourth in the primary, Perry said. “But it was clear to me that this was not an option. There has been and there will be a tremendous amount of money donated to one candidate in this race from various special interests and I believe that we need to take a stand to let everyone know that the city of Los Angeles cannot be bought.”
“And all of you know, I would have loved for Los Angeles to have had a woman as the next mayor. I wanted to be that woman!” she said, and the scores of supporters gathered behind her cheered. “But the primary has narrowed the field. There are two candidates in this race and it is critically important that we elect the right person to lead our city. I believe Eric Garcetti is the right person and he will do the right things for all the people of Los Angeles, because like me, Mr. Garcetti has transformed areas in the city that have long been neglected.”
While Perry did not mention Greuel by name in her remarks, she could not hide her disdain for the controller as she took questions from reporters. During the primary, Greuel slashed at Perry’s personal financial background in the closing days of the race, an attack that Perry said crossed the line. Greuel called her after the primary, and Perry said she did not return the call.
“Dr. Maya Angelou has a very interesting quote, and I’m only going to paraphrase it, but Dr. Angelou says, ‘Thank you for letting me know who you are.’ So I’m clear. I understand, I got the memo. It was clear to me that I didn’t need to engage in any false pretenses because that’s not who I am,” Perry said.
“The memo says I do not respect you and that I respect you so little that I would delve into your personal background and then mischaracterize it to boot and then buy time with my own campaign money and put it on websites all over the country…. Instead of dealing with substance, she went to the personal. That was not necessary.”
Garcetti said he was “so very proud” to receive Perry’s nod, saying that the councilwoman brought a strong independent voice to the mayoral primary.
“Even my closest supporters, when they would watch the debates, they would say, ‘I really like that Jan Perry. She tells it like it is, no window dressing, no frosting on the cake, this is the truth.’ And we need those sort of truthsayers here,” Garcetti said.
Garcetti said he and Perry shared a passion for revitalizing communities block by block.
“There’s a clear difference in this race. While others are running on rhetoric, we’re a campaign of results. Voters can see the results themselves,” Garcetti said. “No matter how many attacks people made against Jan or me, just walk the streets of our districts, just see the jobs on the streets, the cranes downtown, the cranes in Hollywood…. That’s what Jan Perry and I are going to do together when I am mayor … in South Los Angeles and citywide.”
He added that while Perry would help him court voters in her district, her appeal is broad across Los Angeles.
“Jan Perry got love and votes around this city,” Garcetti said. “She’s got friends north to south, east to west.”