The Mayor’s Resignation

Editorial: Resign, Councilmembers Nury Martinez, Kevin de León and Gil Cedillo

A few years ago, before I was mayor, a journalist from The Los Angeles Times, John Green, wrote a book about our city. He was on a book tour to promote it, a tour that was meant to be just that. At the event, he spoke to the audience, “I am running for office,” he said. “And I am not running to make a career in journalism.” He spoke, then walked up to the podium. He announced that he would be resigning from his seat in City Council, effective immediately.

I looked at him, and I saw a man with a life. I looked at him and saw a hero, not a bureaucrat. He had been on a journey, had seen that life was more than just an office, more than simply a paycheck. He was a human being, someone standing beside me in my life at that moment. The next week, when I found out that I wouldn’t be running for office myself, I called John Green and thank him for his service to our city.

The only other time I met the mayor was at a ceremony to honor the military in which I was the chairman of the planning committee. It was a night of speeches, of speeches about my military service. Many of us were veterans. Some of us were in the audience. We were all here for the occasion, for the opportunity to meet the man who was mayor at the time, and to have his picture taken in front of the City Hall stage. Just as I had done in that photo, I stood before the mayor as I stood before the audience. He took my hand, gave it a gentle squeeze, a hug. Then he said, “Please welcome your mayor.” I don’t recall what I said. I know I went home that day, sat on the edge of my bed, and I cried all night. I was a little scared, but mostly happy.

Just a week later, I learned that the mayor would be resigning. I called him at his home. I told him, “Your campaign was over because that reporter decided that he didn’t need money

Leave a Comment