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L.A. Mayor Thinks He’s Democrats’ Rust Belt Solution

Eric Garcetti is traveling to Wisconsin to speak to a Democratic group in the state Trump won in 2016, but he says he’s not thinking about 2020. Right.

Eric Garcetti LA Mayor

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is operating like a man who may run for president. Last week, he announced he’s traveling to Wisconsin to speak at the state’s Democratic convention on June 2.

Asked about the trip and a potential 2020 run by Politico‘s Edward-Isaac Dovere, Garcetti’s deflection lasted a full 20 seconds:

“I think the rules have changed, absolutely. And these categories are artificial. Does a governor of a state of 3 million have more experience than a mayor of a city of 4 million? I mean, we’ve got the sixth largest economy in California in the world. We’ve got the 17th largest in Los Angeles if it was an independent country,” Garcetti said. “It’s not an issue of experience or whether voters are even willing to anymore. I think, ‘What does this country need?’ Who will they need?’ And I trust voters. They respond to the right people at the right moments, and I’m ready to support that person in the future.”

Asked if he himself is that person, Garcetti said, “I’m not focused on it, but the sky’s the limit in terms of what we need to be able to imagine for this country.”

Garcetti just won reelection with 81 percent of the vote. At 46, the half-Mexican, half-Jewish Rhodes scholar, and former Navy intelligence officer, certainly has a solid resume and a potentially lengthy career ahead of him in true-blue California.

But to make the leap from mayor of Los Angeles to president is another story. For the first time in more than 30 years, Democrats lost Wisconsin to a Republican. President Trump’s wins in Michigan and Pennsylvania also sent shockwaves through the Democratic Party, and Democrats today are still coming to grips with losing their “blue wall” in the midwest.

While 2020 is still quite a ways off, and predicting the future is a perilous game, it seems unlikely that the solution to Democrats’ Rust Belt problem is the mayor of one of the most radically-liberal cities in the country.