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Huizar, Smith approach Englander in fundraising élan

How odd that the frontrunner from one of the richest and most Republican Council Districts in Los Angeles should be rivalled in fundraising élan not only by someone in his own district but by an incumbent Councilman from one of the poorest and most Democratic.

Councilman Jose Huizar's fundraising efforts were crow-worthy enough that his campaign released the following taunt regarding them: "[Rudy] Martinez campaign grinds to a halt during final quarter of 2010."

Indeed, Huizar raised over $200,000 in the final quarter of last year, trouncing not only his rival Martinez, who raised a scant $7,200, but all other City Council candidates in the quarter.

However, all was not comfortable for the heir apparent of CD 12, Mitch Englander. Dark horse Brad Smith raised nearly as much as Englander in the final quarter of last year [UPDATE: with a significant boost from his own wallet], with both raising slightly over $28,000. But Englander's sizable fundraising lead from early last year still gives him a tremendous cash advantage, with over $400,000 in pocket. In our opinion, this is the real race to watch for a momentum shift and a potential upset.

In CD 4, while incumbent Councilman Tom LaBonge outraised both Tomas O'Grady and Stephen Box, O'Grady's $38K was nearly six times what Box raised. Box's troubles gaining traction in the race were compounded by his release of two YouTube ads that some describe as "creepy."