La County Federation Of Labor, Kevin De Leon, Mary Martinez discussed on The Times: Daily news from the L.A. Times


To times. Hey man, how you doing? I'm good, man. I'm good. Thanks for asking. I hope you're good too, man. A lot of work right now, you know? So we heard some of what was discussed on this tape, but what are some of the other low lights and the context behind all of this? The best way I can think about it, it's that sense that you know there's a smoke filled room where they're making these choices and you know that it's this incredibly crass way that they often think about things, but this is that moment where we get to see and hear and it almost feel like smell what is happening inside of that room. If you want to cut a deal and if you want, if you want to make laws moves, I would go after the airport. Go get the airport from his little brother, a little bit funny. All of this is being had in the context of just the politics of that moment, that was last year. In October, almost exactly a year ago, councilman markedly Thomas had just been indicted, they're in the midst of this huge fight over redistricting, and they're all meeting together inside the LA county federation of labor. And what we hear is a discussion of redistricting and a whole lot else. I get what we have to do, right? Just massage to create districts that benefit you all. And the future. But we got to figure out mark's seat too. If the African Americans look at this, now that he may or may not be suspended, I don't know what's going to happen. And obviously, there are just all of these terribly racist and politically incendiary things said by Mary Martinez, former council president. And now former council president, council members, Kevin de Leon, and quesadilla along with the head of the LA county federation of labor, Ron Herrera. But there's also this conversation about politics in the city. And so you have these observations being made and then on top of them you have these incredibly racist remarks about Mike Bonham's son who is black. I go, I go, why is that? What's wrong? And I said, why don't you just grab that guy? Can I draw the same thing? Basically, we hear a nurri Martinez use a Spanish term calling him a little monkey. The kid is bouncing off the F and walls on the floor. Practically tipping it over. There's nothing you can do to control him by looking at each other because we're the three women on the floor like this because they tip us over. Hanging on the rails. We can't let them let them off. Spectators will be to that. Which I was like, this kid is a beat down. Like, let me take him around the corner and then I'll bring him back. Yeah. So anyways, getting back to me this week. And then also hearing them sort of talk about this kid as if he were a political prop and one member Kevin de Leon sort of comparing him to one of nuri's handbags. It's an accessory. When we do this, I want Karen. And then when we're going back or the Louis Vuitton bank. That whole conversation kind of makes your eyes pop out of your head considering this is a person who they have VM in political disagreements with to be clear and don't even like him personally, I can tell you, but his son, it's crazy. Yeah, he was just a toddler at the time. And so you mentioned that the conversation happened a year ago and we're obviously just learning about it when the times broke the story over this past weekend, but what do we know about how it was recorded and who leaked it? Well, we don't know a whole lot, frankly. We know it was posted on Reddit and then taken down before it was posted, someone sent it to us, the audio files, we don't know the Reddit user's name. The LA county federation of labor sent us a letter, early Sunday morning, saying this conversation was recorded quote in violation of California's privacy and recording laws on LA county federation of labor property unquote. And if we published it, quote, it is condoning this legal contact. Obviously we thought that was ridiculous argument and went with it. But what we do know is that it's clear that the person who had initially posted it has some gripes with the labor movement in the city, they posted in their original message quote, the labor movement is in bed with city hall. You know what happens, but when you actually hear it, it's unbelievable. I think we all sort of had a similar feeling. But yeah, so that is where much of our reporting now is taking us. We're digging into this. But we know that it occurred about exactly a year ago. During Martinez ex-president of LA city council, her comments are what's drawing the most attention, but who is she? What's her story? She's a fascinating character. She is a child of the San Fernando valley and not just the San Fernando valley, but the northeast San Fernando valley, which it's one of the poorest parts of the city. And it's an area that has transformed over the last 30, 40 years. I actually had lunch with nurri, a week ago, Saturday. Before this tape came out, in her neck of the Woods at a Mexican restaurant, we had micheladas together. And we were there because nuri had been a big endorser of the mayoral candidate Karen Bass. And I was out there to talk to her about why so many people in her district were supporting Rick Caruso. But in the course of that conversation, I also got a real insight into her. I learned about her family. She's the child of immigrants, both of whom came to America in the 70s. Her father was deported the year she was born and snuck back in, came back into America. Is a member of a very powerful sort of political machine that includes senator Alex Padilla, Luz rivas, Tony cardi Ness. Many of them went to high school together in San Fernando high, but they are all very connected to the unions. She worked in activism, particularly an environmental activism. She was later a member of the school board, and then in, I think it was 2013 as elected to the city council becoming city council president in 2020. Her whole worldview is shaped by where she is from. And who she is. So much about her personality is about the sense that her communities working class communities are forgotten. And that white people don't pay attention to them. And they are not part of the conversation nor the policy considerations of the city. And we saw that most in how she talked about homelessness as something that was afflicting communities of color. I just think that that is such a good insight into her worldview. And what about the other people who were in the recording council members Gil se dio and also Kevin de Leon and LA county labor fed. President Ron Herrera, what should we know about them and what were they saying? Most of the time. Kevin de Leon, former mayoral candidate lost in the primary former state Senate pro tem and ran against dianne Feinstein in the Senate race had been a very left of center, Democrat, ran for mayor and lost, but very powerful figure in the city and state, many thought he would run for a difference that stay what office in the future. Gil se dio, a former labor leader, had represented much of westlake area and highland park along with Chinatown. He actually lost his primary in June. And that is sort of interesting because it's discussed and they really underestimate his opponent and we sort of hear them talking and they go, who is that person speaking of unisys Hernandez, who kind of spanked him in that primary, also interesting about studio as he had recently endorsed Rick Caruso, sort of was one of the few elected leaders and one of the few Latinos to back Caruso's candidacy. And then finally, there's Ron Herrera who ran the LA county federation of labor until he stepped down over all of this

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