The mayoral primary election is six months away, and other candidates like developer Rick Caruso may still jump into the race, but a coalition of downtown business owners has decided not to hold out any longer. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the Central City Association has concluded, is its man.

Yesterday, the Central City Association, a group that represents “more than 450 businesses, trade

associations, and non-profit organizations employing more than 350,000 people,” according to its recent press release, officially threw its political weight behind Villaraigosa.

“Mayor Villaraigosa has brought a new vitality to the city of Los Angeles, and CCA believes he deserves your vote for another four-year term as leader of our great city,” said Carol E. Schatz, president and CEO of CCA, in the press release. “CCA supports Mayor Villaraigosa¹s vision for smart growth, development of more housing and solving our critical transportation challenges.”

Despite the early bird nature of the endorsement, it shouldn't be surprising. Central City Association is a group that loves taxpayer handouts and encourages zoning overturns in downtown, and Villaraigosa has rarely, if ever, discouraged those things from happening. With such a strong endorsement this early in the mayor's race, CCA is lining itself up for more of the same.

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