Skip navigation
Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Mayoral Candidates Go Head to Head

With Election Day just three weeks away -- May 21 -- the candidates will likely continue to show their steadfast, differing stances. 

City Council Eric Garcetti and City Controller Wendy Greuel, the final two candidates for the mayoral race in Los Angeles, faced off Monday night at a debate hosted at the Sinai Temple in Westwood.

The debate heated up when the candidates began questioning each other’s honesty regarding lobbyist funding and Super PACs. Garcetti even went so far as to hold up an illustration of his campaign spending and funding in comparison to Greuel’s, with Garcetti’s appearing to be far less. He then attacked Greuel for her relationship with the Department of Water and Power and for receiving millions in support from their union.

But City Controller Greuel countered Garcetti’s points by saying that Garcetti had been involved in extensive salary increases from which he benefited during his term as City Councilman, as well as refusing to take an audit of the DWP to court, suggesting Garcetti had a personal relationship with the union that he now chastised. On both sides, the accusation remained that neither maintained the independence necessary to oversee the DWP.

The panel consisted of three seasoned political journalists who targeted pointed questions at the candidates regarding city development, expansion at LAX, traffic and safety concerns, and plans for improvements for LAPD. When asked about her flip-flopping terms of “plan” and “goal” for the city police department, Greuel quickly defended her stance as an “aspiration.” 

“I don’t think the status quo is what I am willing to accept that says we don’t have enough officers. I think it is critically important to have public safety,” said Gruel.  “We are the most under-policed police department in the entire country, in the big cities.” 

But Garcetti refuted Greuel’s argument saying her ideas were not rational for the city.

“I think it is irresponsible at this time when we are still finishing our budget to talk about hiring 2,000 more officers. Ms. Greuel called it a plan 15 times when she announced it, the next day it was a goal, now it’s back to a plan, so I’m confused as to whether it’s a goal or plan. I would put money, as we get it, into paying our officers for over time.”

Leave a comment

We've Moved!

By Sam Bergum
01/21/16 | 11:09 a.m. PST

Visit us at!

USC Basketball Knocks Off Rival UCLA 89- 75

By Scott Cook
01/14/16 | 12:05 a.m. PST

USC defeats UCLA with stellar play from their Freshmen. 

Holiday Bowl - USC vs Wisconsin Post-Game Press Conference

Su'a Cravens: "It's the players that need to step up"

Darreus Rogers: "It comes down to the players"

Trojans Fall to Wisconsin in the Holiday Bowl 23-21

We detected that you might be on a mobile device such as an iPad or iPhone. Sorry, at this time the video box is only visible on desktop computers.