Campaign Consultants Stank up LA on March 8
The big winners in the City Council elections were the same people who won four years ago. The big losers: voters.Incumbents won, voters lost. To the degree that voters went for LA Weekly-sanctioned candidates, anyway (they didn't). Someone get David Futch his crying blanket.
Wait, it gets worse. Way worse, laying blame on reckless, unfounded conspiracy theories, promulgated by an anony-emailer.
One campaign consultant, Eric Hacopian, urged District 14 challenger Rudy Martinez to go negative and stay negative, ironically turning off the newly awakened voters whom Martinez, as a challenger, badly needed to drag from their homes on Election Day if he wanted to win.
David, if you can help it, please stay away from local political analysis. You're just embarrassing yourself. Maybe forever. Attack politics certainly did not keep people away from the polls in CD 14.
In fact, the Weekly ran a cover on how nice a guy nice guy Stephen Box was, and Stephen Box kept his campaign nice the whole time, and Stephen Box knew about 500 times more about how the City actually works than Rudy Martinez did, and Stephen Box actually scored an enormous, far reaching civic victory involving millions of dollars and multiple-civic agencies just a week before the election--and yet Stephen Box in a heavier-voting district ended up with less than half as many votes as Rudy Martinez did in a lighter-voting one. That all shows you how well it works for a challenger to be a nice polite guy in a Council race.
But here's where it really gets odd. Futch continues:
In the wake of the March 8 disaster for Martinez, some horse-race theorists suggest Hacopian's motive was not to elect Martinez but to use him to slime Huizar in the event that the job-hopping Krekorian decides to run for city attorney — a job Huizar may desire.
Really? Where? Who are these horse-race theorists? Where is your source, David? Point to multiple theorists. Hell, point to even one. Even obliquely.
In fact--once again--Councilman Paul Krekorian himself endorsed Huizar, and even was phone banking for him the Saturday before the election.
There was a time in her career when Jill Stewart, the Weekly's slime-slinging news editor, was actually interested in facts. There was a time when she wouldn't publish single anonymous emails linking two Armenian surnames in a conspiracy as the word of multiple "horse-race theorists."
But Jill Stewart has not encouraged the Weekly to be accurate or even dependable of late when it comes to finding facts that support its weird editorial positioning.
Street-hassle also received a wacko theorist email echoing precisely the same conspiracy--the same email the Weekly did, apparently, which even announced it was going out to "multiple journalists." No, we didn't publish a word of it. Yes, this blog, even without a news editor looking over its shoulder, showed more restraint than the LA Weekly in publishing an incredible anonymous email rumor. We didn't find the author convincing, found that he was unwilling even to say his own true name in private, and so we didn't publish his wacko theories on why Eric Hacopian may have actually "sabotaged" Rudy Martinez by sliming Jose Huizar as best he could.
The only person we found who kept sabotaging Rudy Martinez, in fact, was Rudy Martinez.
We doubt, for instance, that anyone other than Rudy Martinez himself wandered into Northeast Station to file a complaint on the Trujillo happy hour email. We very strongly doubt that Eric Hacopian would advise his client to look like a man who fears happy hour email rhetoric in the middle of a heated political campaign.
We doubt that Eric Hacopian had Rudy Martinez bring up the fact of his own domestic abuse kerfluffle unprovoked at a campaign forum.
We doubt that Eric Hacopian tripped Rudy Martinez towards the end of the race, causing Martinez to be hospitalized overnight.
Though we did carry on a small discussion about the race with the wacko theorist.
Also--can you get more slanted than this:
Huizar's side piled on its attacks against Martinez, getting significant press by alleging that Martinez had in his younger years flashed a dead cop's badge around town.
Huizar's side did not get any significant press by doing this. Huizar's side got significant press by "leaking" a document in public record: the Complaint Adjudication in the matter--that demonstrated that Martinez had simply possessed a badge. I didn't see a single writer around town suggest that Martinez had flashed a badge around town. And yes, I covered the race far more closely and comprehensively than David Futch and the Weekly did.
Note the date: 9/27/05. Yes, Rudy Martinez was relatively younger in 2005. But I don't think we can reasonably call a man to be in his "younger years" less than six years ago.
Facts don't seem to matter much to the Weekly anymore. Slant is what seems to matter.
Which is why Jill Stewart's water-carrying news team, try as it might, can't move the needle when it comes to local elections. This is one story that's already out, everywhere.
It wasn't political consultants who "stank up LA on March 8." It was--and continues to be--the LA Weekly.