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LA Mayoral candidates continue to trade jabs as race tightens

LA Mayoral race tightens with less than three weeks until election
LA Mayoral race tightens with less than three weeks until election 02:41

With just three weeks until Election Day, the race for Mayor of Los Angeles continues to tighten, prompting candidates to hit the streets and campaign throughout the Southland. 

Both Rick Caruso and Rep. Karen Bass could be found at various events Thursday, trading jabs with one another along the way. With mail-in ballots now in the hands of many Angelenos, both have considerably stepped up efforts to interact with their potential constituents. 

As expected, the Los Angeles City Council scandal has intensified the race, with many wondering where the future of politics in their city lies. 

Caruso and Bass have both come forward to denounce the actions of Councilmembers Nury Martinez, Kevin de León and Gil Cedillo for their participation in a heinous conversation in Oct. 2021, where several racist comments were made. Audio of that conversation was leaked to the public, causing immense fallout and the resignation of both Martinez and LA Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera, who was also part of the conversation. De León and Cedillo to this point, however, have yet to indicate any notion of resignation, causing additional outrage and mounting calls for them to step down. 

"I think that's very unfortunate, I think it's disconnected, he needs to resign," Caruso said while in Eagle Rock Thursday night, which falls within De León's district. His comment comes on the heels of an exclusive interview that aired on CBS2 Wednesday afternoon, where De León indicated he has no plans to step aside from his seat on City Council. "This is not about him, this is about the greater good of the city and his district."

Like Caruso, Bass was also out fighting for votes Thursday, joined by renowned attorney Gloria Allred, who represented a number of sexual assault victims of former University of Southern California gynecologist George Tyndall, who faces dozens of charges. 

The two blasted Caruso for failing to make a report public that detailed Tyndall's crimes while he was member of the university's board. 

"On the campaign trail he has been asked repeatedly about why he won't release the investigation and has come up with a patronizing answer about the truth being too much for the survivors to handle," Bass said. 

"It is not for Mr. Caruso to patronize victims and make that decision for them," Allred said. "They, not Mr. Caruso should have the right to decide if they want to read the report."

Caruso fired right back. 

"I know that Karen's desperate, I get it," he said, referring to a headline from The LA Times — "USC was in a free fall. Then it turned to Rick Caruso." 

"That's comes from the LA Times, everybody knows what I did. I did the right thing because I was doing the right thing for the students."

While the two continue to spar, the latest poll from the Southern California News Group shows Caruso with a slight lead, jumping ahead of Bass from the last report. 

He has a 40% to 37% lead as it stands, with the remaining 23% undecided. 

Caruso attributed the jump to his his increased appearances around Los Angeles. 

"I think there's a lot of momentum," he said. "I'm all around town, I'm everywhere in the city, doing six or seven events a day and the messaging is connecting."

Ultimately, the decision will fall into Angeleno's hands come Election Day on Nov. 8.  

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