Karen Bass is first woman elected as LA mayor
Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) won the Los Angeles mayor’s race Wednesday against billionaire developer Rick Caruso, per AP.
Why it matters: Bass’ victory in the closely watched race between two ideologically opposed Democrats shows that LA voters prefer an institutional Democrat over a political outsider to solve the city’s homelessness crisis.
- Much of their campaigns were centered around crime, homelessness and policing.
The big picture: Bass, 69, is the first woman elected mayor of Los Angeles and will be the second Black mayor to hold the position.
By the numbers: With 70% of the votes counted, Bass had a lead of nearly 47,000 votes.
Context: Bass has served six terms in Congress and was on Biden's shortlist for a running mate in 2020.
- During the June primary, Bass finished with a seven-point lead but neither of the candidates received 50% of the vote and so they headed to a midterm runoff.
- The tight race drew high-profile endorsements, with Bass being backed by President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
- Caruso, meanwhile, had a slew of celebrity endorsements, including from Snoop Dogg, Kim Kardashian and Elon Musk.
Of note: Caruso, 63, spent more than $100 million of his own funds on his campaign — outspending Bass 11 to 1, per the Los Angeles Times.
- He was a Republican before switching to an independent in 2011, and declaring himself a Democrat before entering the mayoral race earlier this year.