August 2, 2012
Katelyn Leenhouts, 213-252-4552
18% of L.A. Money in the Mayor's Race Comes from Neighborhoods Where
4% of Angelenos Live
Common Cause urges matching funds reform to
promote geographical donor diversity within the city
As of Tuesday, all the candidates for the Los Angeles mayor's office have released records of campaign contributions they have received through June of this year. California Common Cause's analysis of these filings shows out-of-city donors investing heavily in the mayor's race, and fundraising within the city concentrated in a fraction of L.A.'s neighborhoods.
Taken collectively, the four major candidates-Council Members Eric Garcetti and Jan Perry, Controller Wendy Greuel, and former radio talk show host Kevin James-accepted 9% of their money from outside California and 42% from outside the city limits. (Unitemized contributions, from donors giving less than $100, make up only 1% of funds raised and are not included here.)
Of funds received from within the city, 18% of the money raised came from donors reporting their zip codes as 90049 (Brentwood), 90024 (Westwood), 90067 (Century City), 90272 (Pacific Palisades), or 90064 (Rancho Park), and those donors made up 17% of donors from L.A. City. Additionally, funders from 90210 (including those in Beverly Hills) and 90069 (including those in West Hollywood) gave $353,844.
"When our mayoral candidates are raising nearly a fifth of their L.A. money from zip codes that represent 4% of the city's population, it's a wake-up call to Angelenos," said Kathay Feng, executive director of California Common Cause. "We need to reform our campaign finance system to be responsive to the 99%."
Anjuli Kronheim, California Common Cause's Los Angeles organizer stated, "We support the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission's recommended changes to the matching funds program that would incentivize candidates to fundraise from Angelenos. Additionally, by increasing the donation match rate from 1:1 to 4:1, candidates would not just chase donors who can give the maximum amount. We think these changes are crucial." Right now, should any of these candidates accept matching funds, their out-of-city donations would be matched with taxpayer dollars.
People from every corner of L.A. have joined the call to adopt these changes. Organizations and leaders endorsing the reforms include California Common Cause, the California Clean Money Campaign, Advancement Project, the California Nurses Association, Community Coalition, the Greenlining Institute, Jaquelyn Dupont-Walker of Ward Economic Development Corporation, the Korean American Coalition, the League of Women Voters of Los Angeles, Rev. Dr. Cecil "Chip" Murray of First African Methodist Episcopal Church, the Saving L.A. Project, SCOPE AGENDA, Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, and West Angeles Community Development Corporation.
California Common Cause is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to restoring an open, honest, and accountable government, also working to strengthen public participation and ensuring that political processes serve the public interest, rather than the special interests.
Office: California Common Cause
Common Cause is a nonpartisan grassroots organization dedicated to upholding the core values of American democracy. We work to create open, honest, and accountable government that serves the public interest; promote equal rights, opportunity, and representation for all; and empower all people to make their voices heard in the political process.