Cedillo emerges as top vote-getter in Council District 1 election

Cedillo (left) and Gardea

Former state lawmaker  Gil Cedillo  defeated  council district Chief of Staff  Jose Gardea   by a wide margin in the race for  Council District 1, according to unofficial results.

With nearly 100% of precincts reporting,  Cedillo claimed 52.44%  of votes cast compared to 47.55% for Gardea, according to results posted on the City Clerk website.   The results of the finally still need to be certified before they become final.

The election for Council District 1, which is represented by termed-out Councilman Ed Reyes, has been marked by large amounts of independent expenditures, which are not limited by city rules, poured into the campaign by employee unions, billboard companies and business interests.

cd1resultsWith the help of those independent expenditures,  about twice as much money was spent in support of  Cedillo, a former state assemblyman, than on Gardea, who now serves as Chief of Staff to Councilman Reyes, according to figures from city’s Ethics Commission.  The most recent tally compiled by the City Ethics Commission showed that the Cedillo campaign and its allies spent more than $1.6 million compared to about $710,000 spent in support of the Gardea campaign.

While Gardea has won the support of many neighborhood activists by supporting many neighborhood causes,  Cedillo won the backing of the political establishment and focused on the need to bring more jobs to the district.

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  1. Cedillo also had 2 guys running around the neighborhood taking down dozens of Gardea signs in the days before the election. It’s depressing to me to see dirty tactics like that used for a neighborhood election.

  2. Since when is a 52%-48% vote a “wide margin.” And don’t the provisional ballots still need to be counted?

    Sounds like Cedillo edged Gardea by a slim margin. I guess electronic billboards are coming to Eagle Rock. Boo.

  3. Someone please explain to me why anyone would vote for Gil Cedillo. Are these consensus voters, assuming that everyone else is voting for that guy they’ve heard of, so they should too? People who think that Cedillo’s face is plastered on every billboard in the district because he’s got so much, uh, community support? I’m disgusted.

    What we need is an end to term limits in Sacramento so we can keep Sacramento politicians in Sacramento. Instead, they get termed out and invade local offices, and we wind up with a City Council full of special interest-beholden ex-Assemblymen. At least CD 13 wised up.

  4. What the hell? Since when is 2%, which represents less than 1,000 votes, a “wide margin”. The really story here is how a candidate who raised half what another candidate raised, nearly won.

  5. It’s a sad day for all of us in CD 1. Gardea’s feet are firmly planted in CD 1 soil, as opposed to Mr. Corporate Sacramento who just ride into town. We can look forward to digital billboards and loads of development. Woohoo…..oh, and we can kiss the idea of NO BIG development at Barlow in Elysian Park goodbye! Sad day. Thank God O’Farrel won at least in CD 13.

  6. It’s time to really voice our opinions and get active. No more sitting back and letting someone else do the dirty work — we all need to pitch in and make sure NELA becomes what WE want it to be, not what makes the most money or boosts Cedillo’s political clout. It’s our community and our kids’ community, not his.

  7. Shame on those who didn’t vote…the turnout was pathetic!

    I voted for Jose but a big problem he had was that the area has not improved much, if at all, during the past 12 years of Ed Reyes. Is that Ed Reyes’ fault? No. This is one of the poorest areas of the city and Gil Cedillo isn’t going to change that unless he kicks all the poor people out and shuts down all the crappy ghetto businesses that plague the area…That is the only way you are ever going improve this area – get more people with money to move here and bring in businesses that cater to their needs. That is exactly what happened in Eagle Rock and it did not require one cent of public funds to achieve.

    I would guess that Mr. Cedillo made a lot of promises that will be very hard to keep – like all the people who will claim he promised them jobs in his administration. At least he will get that nice paycheck for 12 years.

  8. If the point spread holds in the final vote count, Cedillo will come into office in a terrible position. He has so little community and local business support he will be in a rough catch up process. It is unbelievable how much those with involvement in their communities mistrust Cedillo. They think, despite his denials that he is beholdened to Chevron or Barlow or Walmart, that he will constantly sell out the community. He needs to make peace and take some bold actions to demonstrate that can deliver for the people in his communities.

    • Great point. The only possible upside of this is the sizable amount of good he will have to overcome the fierce opposition within his constituency.

  9. The problem with Gardea: he turned CD1 into a life-long civil service job. He hasn’t worked anywhere else since 1991. He said he was a community activist- when was that? a year or two around 1990, after he finished at UCLA? He worked as field deputy for Hernandez, then for Reyes, who also worked for Hernandez. They are no different than Cedillo. Their route: Hernandez hires Reyes and Gardea as staffers back in 1991 when he replaces Molina. Hernandez is termed out, then Reyes runs for the seat. Reyes retains Gardea as his Chief of Staff, then when Reyes is termed out, Gardea expects to get the spot. John’s observation above, that CD1 has not improved, is accurate because Reyes and Gardea turned CD1 into a self-serving bureaucracy run by de facto civil servants. It was time to finally end the last bastion of the feckless Mike Hernandez camp, after nearly 22 years. CD 1 needs new ideas and an emphasis on community economic development to cash in on crime reduction. Eagle Rock is a great model, as is Highland Park. The Hernandez/Reyes/Gardea mentality was stuck in the 1970s; they poured money and resources into serving what the activist consituency (gang members, the professional homeless, etc) and emphasized “poverty-pimp” projects while ignoring the other 99% of the CD1 population.

  10. Very disappointed. Big money won, surprise surprise. Well, GIL CEDILLO you better kick it into high high gear and work some miracles in our neighborhoods! First thing, find a way to stop the damn taggers in Highland Park and everywhere else from spraying their shit all over murals, property, houses, etc. It’s gotten real bad again. I want to kick their damn asses. Contrary to what Wal-Mart and all the developers want, could you try supporting small businesses, how’s that for an idea? The kind that make Highland Park, Eagle Rock, Cypress Park, Chinatown, all our little neighborhoods unique and not the same cookie cutter as everywhere else. Expand bike lanes, plant trees, more murals, put kids to work, more afterschool programs, and PARENTING CLASSES! Now that’s a vision for LA.

  11. Ed Reyes in office for 12 years and the only person he comes up with is Gardea so much for CHANGE !!!! I know first hand what type of plans the Reyes clan had look up Highland Park Transit Village selling out a complete business coridor his only real motive is under the table stock options from his developers………

  12. Well the difference will be in people getting involved in advocating for improving their community. Gil in CD 1 is just one vote in the LA City Council. CD 1 is one of the poorest districts, so we need to look at the total district not just Highland Park and Mt. Washington.

  13. Jeanmarie Hance

    Neighbors, I agree the campaign workers showed – at a minimum – poor manners. A Cedillo sign was posted on my property without my permission and my neighbor’s property as well. Let’s hope this isn’t a management style condoned by the councilman-elect, but one of poor field direction. That said, let’s take advantage of the attention of a new elected who will want to know where to begin to have an impact. What’s your top two priorities? Let’s do an informal survey right here, right now and send on to the Councilman-elect. My two — I agree keeping up with graffiti removal is important. I’d also like to receive a introductory communication from him asking the communities he represents to name our priorities and then have him post the responses so we can see the most common concern and address it working with neighborhood associations. And you? UAla

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