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View Full Version : L.A. city attorney candidates spar in combative debate


lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 9:38 AM
Bold print is revelance to 2A

Carmen 'Nuch' Trutanich and Jack Weiss trade jabs over conflicts of interest, development, illegal billboards and gun control. The runoff election is May 19.
By Maeve Reston

9:50 PM PDT, April 4, 2009

The two candidates vying for the Los Angeles city attorney's job entered a combative new phase of their runoff race at a debate Saturday, attacking each other's qualifications and trading charges over conflicts of interest.

During the forum in Hollywood, attorney Carmen "Nuch" Trutanich cast Westside City Councilman Jack Weiss as a legal "novice" with little to show for his two terms on the council. Weiss hammered Trutanich for representing polluters and sharing a law practice with an attorney for the National Rifle Assn. and other gun groups.

Over the course of the hour-and-a-half debate, the two men often avoided making eye contact and handing the microphone to each other, placing it instead on the table between them. At several points, Weiss stood inches from Trutanich, jabbing his finger toward his opponent and demanding that he disclose all his firm's clients.

"You are a walking, talking conflict of interest. You need to tell the people of this city who the conflicts are and how much it's going to cost us," Weiss said, arguing the city would have to spend millions on outside counsel if any of Trutanich's clients faced the city in court. "Please do us a favor now, rather than on July 1, of 'fessing up on who your clients are."

Trutanich, whose firm's website already lists the names of many of his clients, said he would find other government lawyers to represent the city if there were even an appearance of a conflict of interest.

"Here's a guy who is in the back pocket of almost every developer in the city telling me to disclose something?" Trutanich retorted, referring to some of Weiss' contributors. "He feels he's entitled to this job and he's not, because he's done nothing to deserve it."

The debate set the stage for an acerbic six-week countdown to the May 19 runoff, when voters in the city's 5th District will also decide who should replace Weiss on the council.

The city attorney's race was once thought to be an easy mark for Weiss, a former federal prosecutor who amassed a $1.7-million war chest for the primary and was endorsed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Police Chief William J. Bratton. But Trutanich raised nearly $800,000 with the help of matching funds and secured the endorsements of Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and Sheriff Lee Baca.

In the low-turnout primary on March 3, Weiss finished first among five candidates with 36% of the vote, and Trutanich took second with 27%.

During the debate, both candidates pledged to reduce reliance on outside counsel and said they would strengthen the neighborhood prosecutors program. But they sparred over who was best qualified to crack down on the proliferation of billboards in Los Angeles.

Trutanich, who said he would give owners of illegal billboards 90 days to take them down before imposing penalties, argued that Weiss' legal experience did not stop the City Council from approving a settlement that gave two companies the right to convert up to 840 billboards to digital formats.

Weiss said he had led "the legislative fight" on billboard blight while on the council, and accused Trutanich of contributing to "visual pollution" by using at least one billboard in his campaign.

Some of the most contentious exchanges were over the gun clients of Trutanich's firm.

"If you believe that we have enough controls in place right now on weapons and guns in America, then you absolutely should support my opponent," Weiss said.

Trutanich stressed that he was not an NRA member and had never personally represented the NRA, and pointed to his experience as a gang prosecutor in the district attorney's office in the 1980s and to recent endorsements by several law enforcement agencies including the Los Angeles Police Protective League. "I know what a gun can do, and I'll tell you right now when it comes to gun laws, if it's on the books, I'm going to enforce it," he said.

Hesaid some of the gun control ordinances Weiss has authored -- including a ban on the sale of .50-caliber ammunition -- were "window dressing."

PatriotnMore
04-05-2009, 9:44 AM
As I read this, IMHO, it appears he was distancing himself from the NRA, avoided saying we do have enough guns laws on the books, and standing up to anti gun rhetoric. Am I the only one who feels this way, after reading the article?

RP1911
04-05-2009, 9:57 AM
He is choosing his words carefully as anyone running for public office does.

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 10:36 AM
As I read this, IMHO, it appears he was distancing himself from the NRA, avoided saying we do have enough guns laws on the books, and standing up to anti gun rhetoric. Am I the only one who feels this way, after reading the article?

i think so as well but i dont think he's changing his stance on anit-gun laws (that they are useless) but he doesn't want the Dogma of being a slave to NRA. the NRA is seen as the bad guy in LA therefore being associated with them is not viable.

radioburning
04-05-2009, 11:06 AM
As I read this, IMHO, it appears he was distancing himself from the NRA, avoided saying we do have enough guns laws on the books, and standing up to anti gun rhetoric. Am I the only one who feels this way, after reading the article?

This is politics. He's playing it smart.

yellowfin
04-05-2009, 12:17 PM
He should take the matter head on and counterattack, making the NRA something to be proud of instead of treating us like a fat chick you buy drinks for to get a quick score with but would never tell anyone about. He should stand up to this ridiculous trashing of us.

bwiese
04-05-2009, 12:37 PM
He should take the matter head on and counterattack, making the NRA something to be proud of instead of treating us like a fat chick you buy drinks for to get a quick score with but would never tell anyone about. He should stand up to this ridiculous trashing of us.


A nice sentiment perhaps, but please continue to remind me that you should never be my campaign manager.

You have to win first.

This is just a buncha drama in unfriendly territory.

dustoff31
04-05-2009, 12:39 PM
He should take the matter head on and counterattack, making the NRA something to be proud of instead of treating us like a fat chick you buy drinks for to get a quick score with but would never tell anyone about. He should stand up to this ridiculous trashing of us.

He could do that. But as others have pointed out, in LA his campaign would be over.

If he were in AZ or perhaps even in certain other areas of CA, he would be jumping up and down, pointing to his NRA rating/endorsement. However, that's not a politically healthy thing to do in LA.

sigsauer887
04-05-2009, 12:47 PM
Whats the chance of Carmen winning against Weiss? Weiss sounds like a total D-bag

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 1:16 PM
Whats the chance of Carmen winning against Weiss? Weiss sounds like a total D-bag

oh he is.

yellowfin
04-05-2009, 1:35 PM
A nice sentiment perhaps, but please continue to remind me that you should never be my campaign manager.

You have to win first.

This is just a buncha drama in unfriendly territory. I didn't say when to do it, did I? After winning would be quite sufficient. How long are the terms?

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 6:04 PM
I didn't say when to do it, did I? After winning would be quite sufficient. How long are the terms?

same as president 2 4 yr. terms

tactic101
04-05-2009, 6:51 PM
He should take the matter head on and counterattack, making the NRA something to be proud of instead of treating us like a fat chick you buy drinks for to get a quick score with but would never tell anyone about. He should stand up to this ridiculous trashing of us.

Like it or not the letters NRA are code in LA political lingo for "bad" and "conservative"--recall that LA is way to the left. If I had my NRA sticker on my vehicle it would have been torched by the locals long ago.

He deflected Weiss' bait without referring to the NRA, and said exactly what any 2A supporter would say in response to calls for more gun control: we already have enough laws on the books. Enforce them.

He also openly indicated that he questions the 50 cal ammo ban and basically called it bogus.

Here, here for Trutanich.

RomanDad
04-05-2009, 7:28 PM
A nice sentiment perhaps, but please continue to remind me that you should never be my campaign manager.

You have to win first.

This is just a buncha drama in unfriendly territory.:thumbsup:

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 7:49 PM
Like it or not the letters NRA are code in LA political lingo for "bad" and "conservative"--recall that LA is way to the left. If I had my NRA sticker on my vehicle it would have been torched by the locals long ago.

He deflected Weiss' bait without referring to the NRA, and said exactly what any 2A supporter would say in response to calls for more gun control: we already have enough laws on the books. Enforce them.

He also openly indicated that he questions the 50 cal ammo ban and basically called it bogus.

Here, here for Trutanich.

donate what you can :https://donate.tru09.com/

he has the right stance and i would hate for him to lose because wiess is using Pancho's fundraising machine.

Sleepy1988
04-05-2009, 7:54 PM
i think so as well but i dont think he's changing his stance on anit-gun laws (that they are useless) but he doesn't want the Dogma of being a slave to NRA. the NRA is seen as the bad guy in LA therefore being associated with them is not viable.

We need to get all of the real Americans out of LA and just give it back to Mexico, then fortify our border.

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 8:12 PM
We need to get all of the real Americans out of LA and just give it back to Mexico, then fortify our border.

John Stewart got down on that real America stuff.

yellowfin
04-05-2009, 8:39 PM
This whole anti gun leftist complex in LA and Sacramento is a rather peculiar institution, don't you think?

lioneaglegriffin
04-05-2009, 9:13 PM
This whole anti gun leftist complex in LA and Sacramento is a rather peculiar institution, don't you think?

i guess i lived in it so long im used to it. :o My Assemblyman just left us to take the 26 Senate that Mark Ridley Thomas left for the Board of Supervisors seat that was left by Yvonne Brathwaite Burke and he probably will win because no republican will ever win down here. Now we have to replace him after the May elections. Oh how the Dominos fall. LA politics where every position is a f%$kin stepping stone.