Debate roundup: Here’s what Greuel and Garcetti said in their first debate

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LA mayoral candidates Eric Garcetti, left, and Wendy Greuel

LA mayoral candidates Eric Garcetti, left, and Wendy Greuel

Did you miss last night’s debate between mayoral candidates Eric Garcetti and Wendy Greuel – the first since the primary? Not to worry – there was lots of news coverage. Here’s a roundup:

  • The LA Times said the two liberal Democrats played up their differences. “Garcetti, the three-term councilman, said voters should look to the revitalization he has brought to Hollywood and Atwater Village and to pension reform he helped enact “while others stood on the sidelines.” Greuel said she had proved she knows how to say “no” and to make entrenched interests unhappy with her more than 70 audits of city departments.” (James Rainey and Laura J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times)
  • The Jewish Journal said Greuel and Garcetti said they’d ask city unions for givebacks. That pledge “would place the new mayor in the awkward position of trying to take back some of the raises that he or she had voted to award to municipal workers in 2007, when both Greuel and Garcetti were on the city council. Were Greuel to win and make good on her promise, she would also be negotiating against some of the very same unions that spent millions promoting her candidacy during the primary.” (Jonah Lowenfeld, Jewish Journal)
  • The LA Weekly said the expected fight on education policy fizzled. They only sparred over the parent trigger.  “Greuel confronted Garcetti on his changing position on the “parent trigger” law, which allows parents to take over schools via signature-gathering campaigns. Garcetti responded that he “always supported parent trigger,” which is not the case. (He has supported it since Feb. 27.) That was the extent of the exchange on education, which is an important issue for Greuel if she expects to build up an advantage with women voters” (Gene Maddaus, LA Weekly)
  • Dodging the tough issues? The LAT’s Steve Lopez thinks so. “All right, so it was only the first debate. But it wasn’t very satisfying, and reminded me too much of too many primary debates, in which the candidates parroted the same lines endlessly. The city needs and deserves a detailed discussion focused on strategies and solutions, not safe performances punctuated with prepared bromides and useless generalities. Can either of these candidates deliver?” (Steve Lopez, LA Times)
  • And Neon Tommy brings us Garcetti’s dig at Raiders fans. Both candidates want the NFL to return, saying football would bring jobs and tourism revenue. “Garcetti had a memorable and well-received observation: “just not the Raiders because we’ve gone down in crime every year since they left.” (Francesca Martens, Neon Tommy)