California State Assemblywoman Betsy Butler and Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom are battling it out in the competitive Assembly District 50 race, and with such a close election expected, anything can help — or hurt.

Butler and Bloom would have probably liked the endorsements of their like-minded opponents from the primary — gay rights leader Torie Osborn and gay Republican Brad Torgan — but they declined to support anyone.

That was a little surprising to us since Osborn had many nice things to say about Bloom when we interviewed her for an L.A. Weekly cover story. Osborn also dissed Butler to no end.

Recently, however, the Santa Monica Coalition for a Livable City was more than willing to take a loud and public stand — and it wasn't in support of Bloom.

In fact, SMCLC went out of its way to disparage the Santa Monica mayor.

“Look at all the traffic clogging development that's come to Santa Monica in the last 12 years since Richard Bloom has been on our City Council,” SMCLC leadership wrote in a press statement, which was reported by Santa Monica Dispatch. “Richard has voted for EVERY commercial development that's come before the council and has been rewarded by sizable developer contributions over the years.”

SMCLC continued, “Now Richard wants Santa Monica to become an even greater regional office destination, which is what brings overwhelming and unmitigatable traffic into our city.

“Betsy Butler supports our goals. She supports the incredible work and the commitment that [SMCLC] has demonstrated for a more livable community …

“This November, Santa Monica residents will have a clear choice who they want to represent us in Sacramento – someone who supports residents trying to keep Santa Monica sustainable and livable, or someone who supports developer interests every single time.”


While the June primary was extremely close, Butler is still considered the frontrunner — she has the backing of the local and state Democratic Party establishment, which isn't necessarily a good thing since they play nasty, hardball politics with anyone they consider an “outsider.” In this case, that person is Bloom.

Facing a tough battle against the Democratic political machine, Bloom, who's also a Democrat, is undoubtedly relying on a voter base in Santa Monica to help him win in November. More scathing critiques from locals such as SMCLC may not help his campaign.

Contact Patrick Range McDonald at

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