Carol Platt Liebau: Blogging the Mayoral Race for The LA Times

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Blogging the Mayoral Race for The LA Times

To check out the Times' blog on the mayor's race, click here.

Below is my first submission:

Remember the old saying that, in academia, the infighting is so nasty because the stakes are so low? The same principle applies to this year’s mayoral election. With little sunlight between the two candidates on policy matters, character issues – which tend quickly to degenerate into mudslinging – became the only way for each to distinguish himself from the other.

Both Antonio Villaraigosa and Jim Hahn are unreconstructed liberals (although the former may lean slightly more to the left than the latter), with strong ties to the labor community. Neither showed any signs of breaking free of the big government mind set – remember their debate argument about who had demonstrated greater “support” for public education? “Support,” of course, was defined only as who had favored offering the most money to the teachers’ unions that dominate public education, to students’ detriment.

Neither Hahn nor Villaraigosa is likely to adopt any truly innovative or market based approaches to solving the city’s problems. And that means that, even before a single ballot is counted, there’s one certain loser in this race – the people of Los Angeles.


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