But that's not happening at the moment. Officially, Cooley is still undecided about whether he will run for a fourth term. Most everyone -- except Carmen Trutanich -- expects him to retire, which is why there are a half-dozen prosecutors out there raising money.
If Cooley does retire, most insiders expect him to endorse Lacey. Today's promotion is further evidence of that. But if he doesn't, it will be seen as a major slight -- and it could well sink her campaign.
Lacey, who has been the No. 3 administrator, is taking over for John Spillane, who is leaving the downtown office to go run the San Fernando branch. In a press statement today, Cooley praised Lacey's "outstanding leadership" and said she had "a wealth of knowledge, experience and innovative ideas."