Janice Hahn and Kathryn Barger face runoffs in L.A. County supervisor races

Janice Hahn and Kathryn Barger face runoffs in L.A. County supervisor races

From http://www.latimes.com

By Abby Sewell, David Zahniser and Alice Walton

With 100% of precincts reporting Wednesday morning, Hahn outpolled Napolitano in the District 4 race, 47% to 37%.

In a second county contest, Kathryn Barger, chief of staff to the current supervisor, secured a runoff spot for the District 5 seat with 30% of votes cast.

Darrell Park, a former White House Office of Management and Budget staffer, moved into second place in later returns and finished 417 votes ahead of the third-place finisher, state Sen. Bob Huff, each with about 15% of the vote.

The results are unofficial until late mail-in and provisional ballots are counted.

This year’s election represents the second phase of a major shift on the Board of Supervisors brought on by term limits approved by voters in 2002.

Departing supervisors Don Knabe and Michael D. Antonovich have been on the board for decades. Knabe was first elected in 1996 and Antonovich in 1980. They are the only two Republicans on the officially nonpartisan five-member board.

Eight candidates were on the ballot in the race to replace Antonovich: Barger, Huff, Park, Los Angeles City Councilman Mitch Englander, prosecutor Elan Carr, former Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian, Palmdale-area real estate investor Raj Pal Kahlon and Altadena Town Council member Billy Malone.

Park, Kahlon and Malone are Democrats. The other five are Republicans.

Englander and Barger had led the pack in fundraising, each raising more than $1 million through their campaign committees and also receiving substantial support from independent expenditure committees. Unions representing county firefighters and sheriff’s deputies put $1.2 million into an outside committee set up by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor to back Barger’s bid.

At Barger’s election night party at a restaurant in Pasadena with Antonovich and a crowd of supporters, Barger noted the importance of faith-based groups in the Antelope Valley and the nonprofit communities in Santa Clarita and the San Gabriel Valley in supporting her campaign. She also acknowledged the boost her campaign got from labor.

“They know that my word is good,” Barger said about getting the endorsement of the labor federation. “If I don’t agree, I’ll give you the reasons why I don’t, but I will always listen and in areas where compromises can be made, I will.”

Park said he does not expect the vote tally to be finalized until later in the week, but said he was encouraged by the results.

“It goes to show you, in this cynical time in our politics, everyone thinks it’s only big money that matters, and it’s not true,” he said.

Park, who runs a start-up called Better Than We Found It and advises green energy companies, raised about $200,000, hundreds of thousands less than the Republicans in the race. He said he thought the fact that he was a Democrat and endorsed by the county Democratic Party gave him a boost in the district, where registered Democrats now outnumber Republicans, 41% to 30%.

“We didn’t have to come up with a message that makes us into something we aren’t,” he said.

Huff, who had held a slim edge for second place in early returns, said Tuesday night he thought his record of working across party lines in Sacramento had helped him compete with better-funded opponents.

“There’s something to love and hate about my record, because it’s so public,” he said.

Huff noted Wednesday morning that there were still thousands of votes to be counted, including mail-in ballots sent on election day.

“It’s close, and we’ll just stay tuned,” he said.

Englander, who had been expected by many to make the runoff, finished fifth with about 12% of the vote.

As his supporters watched the results roll in at the Angeles National Golf Club in Sunland, Englander said the county election and other local races had been overshadowed by the presidential contest.

In the race to replace Knabe, Hahn, a former Los Angeles city councilwoman and daughter of longtime former county Supervisor Kenneth Hahn, was widely considered the favorite, with some predicting she would win outright Tuesday.

She faced off against Napolitano, a Knabe aide and former Manhattan Beach city councilman, and Whittier school board member Ralph Pacheco. Napolitano is a Republican; Pacheco is a Democrat.

Napolitano now will face Hahn in November. He and Hahn each raised more than $1 million as well – Napolitano by putting in more than $760,000 of his own money and Hahn through substantial support from both public and private-sector unions.

With early returns showing her in the lead, Hahn said she would be honored and humbled to serve in a post that her father held for decades.

“I’ve always felt that I’m going to win this,” she said Tuesday night. “It’s either tonight or it’s going to be in November.”

Napolitano said he was pleased with the momentum his campaign had gained despite beginning with much lower name recognition than Hahn.

“We just did an old-school campaign, reaching people and talking about the issues and about records,” he said.

L.A. City Council Bans 10 Round-Capacity Ammunition Magazines

Liberals and Progressives who want to undermine and restrict our 2nd Amendment rights know it’s harder to go after the guns themselves than the bullets and the magazines. Our rights are slowly eroded in Sacramento and in our local government and most won’t notice until it’s too late. 

The arrogant will say you should be able to defend yourself with a maximum of six rounds. Easy for liberal politicians to say when they won’t be standing in your shoes if you are unfortunate enough to have to defend your life or the life of a family member.  

Unanimous? So much for the Republican on the council.  

– Greig Report Team

LA TIMES: L.A. City Council bans 10 round-capacity ammunition magazines

Defying the warnings of gun rights groups, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to ban the possession of firearm magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds.

Backers of the plan said it would help minimize the bloodshed of mass shootings by forcing attackers to interrupt their rampages to stop and reload.

Juliet Leftwich, legal director for the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, called such magazines “the common thread” in almost all of the mass shootings that have devastated the country, from Newtown to Virginia Tech to Columbine.

Even as city officials celebrated the newly passed restrictions, gun control activists were dismayed to hear about a proposal to exempt some retired police officers from the rules — an 11th-hour change now being sought by the union that represents Los Angeles police.

California law already generally bans the manufacturing of such large-capacity magazines, offering them up for sale or bringing them into the state. But state law does not prohibit people from possessing them — something that Councilman Paul Krekorian and others called a loophole that jeopardizes public safety.

“People who want to defend their families don’t need a 100-round drum magazine and an automatic weapon to do it,” said Krekorian, who championed the ban at a rally Tuesday outside City Hall. But if someone wanted to do harm, Krekorian added, “imagine what a gunman on this sidewalk could do with that kind of firepower with a crowd like this.”

Los Angeles lawmakers first sought to draft such rules more than two years ago. Survivors of gun violence lamented that it had taken so long for the council to press forward with the ban.

Rhonda Foster, whose 7-year-old son, Evan, was killed and her younger son, Alec, injured when a gunman sprayed their car with more than a dozen bullets, said the ban would save lives.

“This is a no-brainer,” her husband, Ruett Foster, told the crowd, holding a picture of his sons.

The National Rifle Assn. and other gun rights groups have threatened to sue over the new Los Angeles rules, arguing that they violate the 2nd Amendment and are preempted by California law.

Ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds “are in common use for self-defense and they are overwhelmingly chosen for that purpose,” said Anna M. Barvir, an attorney with Michel & Associates, which represents the NRA and the California Rifle & Pistol Assn. “Indeed, millions are in the hands of good American citizens. As such, they are fully protected by the Constitution.”

CalGuns Shooting Sports Assn. has also raised concerns. “I don’t think it’s going to have any effect on gun violence,” said association director Chad Cheung, pointing out that someone in neighboring cities such as Burbank or Glendale could still possess the magazines.

The Los Angeles ordinance is modeled on rules in San Francisco and Sunnyvale that have so far survived legal challenges, but Barvir said those battles are not over and that gun rights groups are seriously considering litigation over the L.A. rules. In reaction, Krekorian told a cheering crowd, “If the NRA wants to sue us over this, bring it on.”

Under the new rules, Angelenos will have 60 days to remove, surrender or legally sell or transfer them after the city ordinance goes into effect. Breaking the law will be a misdemeanor.

The Los Angeles rules exempt, among others, on-duty police and military gun owners, licensed firearm dealers, and people who more than 15 years ago obtained guns that only can be used with such magazines. At the Tuesday meeting, Councilman Mitch Englander also proposed an exemption for any retired police officer who holds a valid, current permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Peter Repovich, director of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, said it was important for police — including retirees — to be prepared to meet any threat to public safety. “They’re additional eyes and ears out there,” Repovich said.

The Council also voted narrowly to ask city lawyers to draft such an amendment, which will return to the council for debate and a vote next week. Four council members — Paul Koretz, Nury Martinez, David Ryu and Marqueece Harris-Dawson — voted against drafting the amendment, which was sharply opposed by gun control activists.

“If the City Council allows this exemption, none of us are going to be happy,” said Women Against Gun Violence Executive Director Margot Bennett.

The police union has also pushed for retired officers to be exempt from another proposed ordinance that would require Angelenos to lock up handguns or disable them with a trigger lock when they are not being used at home, a measure meant to prevent deadly accidents.

Krekorian has balked at that idea. “If they don’t store their gun in a safe way, that gun is a hazard,” the councilman said. However, Krekorian said he supported exempting retired officers from the magazine rules because it wouldn’t pose a similar risk to the public.