Butler announces for WeHo Assembly

September 12, 2011

53rd District Assembly member Betsy Butler will move into the newly-created 50th District to run as an incumbent.

As expected, newly-elected 53rd District Assembly member Betsy Butler made it official last week – she will move into the newly-created 50th District as drawn up by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission as part of the nation’s decennial post-census redistricting.

She joins a race for a seat to replace either Julia Brownley in the 41st or Mike Feuer in the 42nd (both termed out in 2012) in which two candidates have already been active, Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom and activist Torie Osborn.

Ms. Butler currently lives in Marina Del Rey, just outside the borders of the new district, and must move to run as an incumbent on the basis of a small overlap between her current district and the new one.

No Republican has filed in the overwhelmingly Democrat district.

Because of the new open primary rules for 2012, in which the two top primary vote getters face off in the General Election, observers expect two of these three major name Dems to appear on the November ballot.

Ms. Butler’s behind the scenes announcement that she would make the move forced West Hollywood Council member Jeffrey Prang out of the race.

According to the latest financial statements available (June 30), Ms. Osborn leads the field in fundraising with $255,830, Assembly member Butler has $134,507 remaining in her campaign chest from her last run and Mayor Bloom has raised $133,415.

The endorsement battle shows Ms. Butler carrying plenty of local support from West Hollywood and the powers that be.

Mayor John Duran has endorsed her and Jeffrey Prang is an acknowledged friend and supporter.

Mayor Bloom, too, has his share of local endorsements, including Santa Monica's police and firefighters associations, Santa Monica’s City Council, Malibu Mayor John Siebert, Beverly Hills Mayor Barry Brucker and Culver City Mayor Michael O'Leary.

This map, created by Venice political activist Marta Evry, shows the overlap between Ms. Butler's old and new districts and the places of residence for each of the three major candidates. Click to see actual map.

Ms. Osborn touts endorsements from Los Angeles City Councilmembers Bill Rosendahl, Richard Alarcon and Tom LaBonge, City Council President Eric Garcetti, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and former-Senate and -Assembly member Sheila Kuehl.

A likely endorsement battle ground for Butler/Osborn will be gay leaders, given Ms. Butler’s board membership of Equality California (EQCA) and Ms. Osborn’s deep gay institutional history (director of National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the LA Gay & Lesbian Center before running Liberty Hill Foundation for nine years).

The primary election stands scheduled for June 5, 2012.