Monica Council Incumbents Put Politics Ahead of Policy
By Jorge Casuso
September 8 – There will be a City Council quorum
Tuesday night, but it won’t be in the council chambers. The
four council incumbents will be at an LA County Democratic Central
Committee meeting instead, vying for the group’s endorsement.
A notice posted on the City Council Agenda Monday afternoon noted
that the meeting was “cancelled due to lack of quorum.”
“We lost the quorum and determined that council members were
available next week,” said Kate Vernez, a senior aide to the
The four incumbents -- Mayor Herb Katz and Council members Richard
Bloom, Ken Genser and Bobby Shriver -- informed the City Manager
they would not attend the meeting, because it conflicted with the
Democratic Party endorsement session.
On Tuesday night more than 200 members of the Democratic Party
Central Committee will pick a countywide slate that includes making
endorsements in the race for four open seats on the Santa Monica
After interviewing candidates, the 41st Assembly District Committee
this weekend voted to recommend four candidates – incumbents
Bloom, Genser and Shriver and challenger Ted Winterer.
The choice of Winterer, who is an author of a measure on the November
ballot that would cap most commecial development in the beachside
city, seems to have helped mobilize the incumbents. (“T”
for Traffic ," August 18, 2008)
Katz, a staunch life-long Democrat who was the only council incumbent
snubbed by the group, decided to attend the meeting and speak. Bloom
and Genser followed suit.
“I know Ken was going,” Bloom said. “I spoke
to Herb, and he said he had the same intention.
“It wasn’t something I was happy about, but I made
a decision I want to be reelected, and this is an important endorsement
for me. This is a very exceptional circumstance. We’re just
victims of circumstance.”
After Shriver informed the City Manager he, too, would attend,
the meeting was cancelled.
"Everybody else seems to be going to the Democratic Party
meeting, and I decided to go," Shriver said.
Winterer, who failed to win the endorsement of the Santa Monica
Democratic Club after receiving the steering committee’s recommendation,
also will attend the meeting. ("Dem
Club Endorses Genser, Bloom; Shriver Falls Short," September
“Ted has every reason to be there,” said Sharon Gilpin,
Winterer’s campaign manager. “They (the council incumbents)
are not doing the people’s business.”