Rep. Karen Bass announces bid for Los Angeles mayoral race
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Rep. Karen Bass announces bid for Los Angeles mayoral race

California Democratic Rep. Karen Bass announced Monday that she’s running for mayor of Los Angeles next year.

“Our city is facing a public health, safety and economic crisis in homelessness that has evolved into a humanitarian emergency. I’ve spent my entire life bringing groups of people together in coalitions to solve complex problems and produce concrete change — especially in times of crisis,” Bass said in a statement.

“Los Angeles is my home. With my whole heart, I’m ready. Let’s do this — together. I’m running for mayor,” she added.

CNN reported last week that Bass, a six-term congresswoman and Los Angeles native, had been preparing to launch her mayoral bid. She told reporters Friday that she was in the “final stages” of her deliberation.

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer and two members of the city council — Kevin de León and Joe Buscaino — have already announced campaigns for mayor.

Raised in Los Angeles, Bass has been politically active since an early age, canvassing her neighbors on behalf of Robert F. Kennedy in the 1968 Democratic presidential primary. She later became a physician’s assistant and in 1990 founded the nonprofit Community Coalition to help African-American and Latino communities in South Los Angeles. She then was elected to the state Assembly and rose to become the first Black female speaker in any state legislature in the country.

In Congress, she led the Congressional Black Caucus and was on Joe Biden’s shortlist for vice president in 2020. She was a top negotiator in Congress’ bipartisan negotiations to overhaul policing laws, which ended without a deal last week.

The city’s current mayor, Eric Garcetti, was nominated by Biden to serve as ambassador to India. The Los Angeles City Council has the power to appoint an interim replacement if the Senate confirms Garcetti’s nomination.

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