WeHo Councilmember Duran Endorses Bobby Shriver in LA Supervisor Race

Santa Monica Mayor Bobby Shriver
Santa Monica Mayor Bobby Shriver

West Hollywood City Councilmember John Duran today endorsed Bobby Shriver for election as L.A. County’s 3rd District Supervisor this coming November.

Duran came in third in the June primary race for the supervisor position, behind Shriver, a former mayor of Santa Monica and a nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy, and former state legislator Sheila Kuehl.

Duran’s endorsement of Shriver followed an endorsement of him on June 30 by West Hollywood Mayor John D’Amico. That leaves the City Council evenly split in its endorsements, with Councilmembers John Heilman and Jeffrey Prang having previously endorsed Kuehl. Councilmember Abbe Land is unable to make an endorsement because of her position as head of the Trevor Project, a non-profit group, according to Land’s deputy Kiran Hashmi.

In making his endorsement, Duran said he was more philosophically aligned with Shriver. Duran noted, for example,that both he and Shriver think the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) should be amended to loosen regulations on developers. CEQA requires an “environmental quality impact” analysis by local government units on development projects. The findings of some of those analyses have been used to by residents of West Hollywood and other communities to oppose or force changes in some development projects. Real estate developers based outside of West Hollywood but with projects in the city have been major donors to Duran’s previous City Council campaigns.

While no one party garnered more than 50 percent of the vote, Kuehl came in first in the June primary with 36 percent of the vote compared with 29 percent for Shriver and 16 percent for Duran. Kuehl ran first in more than 630 of the county’s precincts while Shriver took first place in 250.

Each of the supervisor candidates is a Democrat, as are all of the West Hollywood City Council members. But Kuehl shares another trait with four of the five WeHo Council members in that she is homosexual. Thus her endorsement by D’Amico and Duran, two of the Council’s four gay council members, has intrigued some political observers. Given that Duran is openly gay and has positioned himself in the supervisor campaign as a fiscal conservative, some wonder whether he will help divert some gay votes to Shriver and also help him attract support from more conservative voters and the development community. On the other hand, some predict the LGBT vote will go to Kuehl. While many older gay men privately express discomfort with lesbian women, that feeling is less common among younger gay men who some observers believe will lean toward supporting an LGBT candidate, whether male or female.

In a comment published on a blog by KPCC, the public radio station, Kuehl criticized Duran’s endorsement. “It’s quite disloyal to the LGBT community,” she said. “I don’t think every gay person has to endorse every other gay person but if you have a qualified LGBT candidate, you’d think you’d take that into account.”

“I did not want to make my decision based on sexual orientation,” Duran said. “I think we are beyond the part of electing the first of everything.”

In the June primary Kuehl ran first in West Hollywood, 40 percent of whose population is composed of gay men, winning 38 percent of the primary vote compared to 24 percent for Duran and 16 percent for Shriver. Duran is up for re-election to the West Hollywood City Council in March of next year.

  1. Aside from who’s endorsing whom… I’m far from fully convinced of Kuehl especially considering her track record. And if all she’s got for a convincing argument is that its “disloyal to the LGBT community”…I think that’s highly questionable and says a lot about her shaky foundation. Shriver on the other hand has his heart and passion in AIDS research and funding for a good chunk of his life…from what I see. And he chose that path, when he could really have an avenue to do whatever he wants. His local tenure in Santa Monica seems to be well polished and he’s tacked some huge local issues with proof positive to show for it. I’ve said in a previous comment on this issue, we don’t need “Sacramento” in LA County. LA County needs local interest and someone who is used to working on the issues here…hands-on.

    To address a comment in the article: I don’t think we’re necessarily “beyond” the “first of anything” but I surely don’t think -that- should be a qualification for voting for someone… it’s more of a bonus. This is a public office in a county large enough to be a state… its not the Guinness book of world record!?! 🙂

  2. Duran’s endorsement could be the kiss of death. The LA Times and Garcetti endorsed Duran. Then Duran lost. So a loser, who had met previously with Shriver before the primary election, is now endorsing him. LOL time. And what are the slimy LA Times and Garcetti going to do – crawl to this Shriver and endorse him. This is a guy whose only claim to fame is that he is related to a politically dead clan – the Kennedys. This country has had enough Bushes, Kennedys, Clintons and Obama. Kuehl at least is not a lackey of developers like Duran (and D’Amico) or a relative of JFK. Vote Kuehl. If I were her, I would detest having Duran’s endorsement. As for Duran and Shriver it is time for real muckraking politics to show who these two political hacks are.

  3. The two big issues I have with Sheila Kuehl is her age, can she run for a second and third term in order to be effective and her long standing belief the Kaiser-Perminente provides excellent healthcare when compared to such institutions as Cedars-Sinai Med. Ctr.

  4. A reminder about Comments standards:

    WEHOville implemented the Comments feature to enable residents of West Hollywood and others who love this community to comment on stories, ask questions of one another and engage in informed debates. With the exception of AOL’s now all-but-defunct Patch, that is something that was missing in West Hollywood until we launched this website in October 2011.

    As of this writing, there have been 6,381 comments posted on WEHOville since our launch, with the monthly average growing rapidly as our readership grows. Our commenters have raised some smart and provocative questions and offered up some innovative solutions for the problems West Hollywood faces while also calling out (although perhaps not often enough) the great things that attract us to WeHo.

    While we encourage open debate and an exchange of ideas, we enforce certain standards and read each comment before it is posted. We do not post comments that contain language that is obscene or insults people because of their race, gender or sexual orientation. We do not post allegations of criminal activity unless they are proven and are relevant to the discussion at hand. And we do not publish “ad hominem” attacks on people. That’s a fancy term for personal attacks that aren’t relevant to the topic under discussion.

    Thus a commenter who criticizes a political candidate because of his or her height, weight, hair color or parents probably won’t see that comment on WEHOville.com. A commenter who asks a leading question such as “Wonder if this candidate has ever been indicted?” won’t see that comment on WEHOville.com.

    We do, however, post comments critical of WEHOville.com so long as they meet the standards listed above. There have been hundreds of them.

    We don’t require those who comment to make their full names public. We want to encourage as many people as possible to express their opinions, and some are shy about doing that under their own names. We do, however, monitor the IP addresses of our commenters. When we find multiple comments under different names coming from the same computer, we reach out to the commenter and invite him or her to choose one identity. We don’t want to encourage multiple personality disorder!

    We invite our readers to alert us if we’ve inadvertently posted an inappropriate comment. We also are happy to answer any questions a reader poses about why his or her comment isn’t posted. You can send those questions directly to Henry@WEHOville.com.

    The primary goal of WEHOville.com is to foster an informed and engaged community. Therefore, we believe it is important to offer this platform for debate and to enforce standards that ensure that the debate is focused on the issues.

    1. WEHOville hasn’t endorsed anyone in the November election. However we do not publish comments that are ad hominem attacks. All comments but focus on the issue under discussion and not include irrelevant criticism of a person.

  5. I think this was the last gasp of political capital for Duran. Does his endorsement really mean anything to anyone? I mean he got endorsements from the LA Times and Garcetti in the primary and those weren’t enough to get him into the runoff. I kind of see this endorsement as a non-event.

  6. Shriver just lost my vote…..Duran is not doing Shriver any favors. In fact, he will lose votes for him. I agree with Charlie on his take on Duran and D’Amico. I think they are both snakes that have been nothing but a disappointment to our City. They both side with the $$$$.

  7. ditto for D’Amico’s endorsement of Kennedy/Shriver – D’Amico is another disappointment to citizens of West Hollywood as he totally has failed his job as mayor.

  8. Good, was looking for another reason not to vote for Kennedy, Duran has provided it. He has done such a lousy job for West Hollywood government that he is unqualified to endorse anyone. His support for Kennedy has just thrown my vote to Sheila.

  9. I disagree with making things easier for developers. California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) should NOT be amended to loosen regulations on developers.

Comments are closed.