Hahn to raise LtGov $$$ in Oakland, Florez in LA

A1361-047As the jibber-jabber over whether to confirm Abel Maldonado as lieutenant governor continues (the LA Times’s George Skelton says today that it’s a must for Democrats), the Democratic contenders in next year’s election are continuing to raise money full steam ahead.

In fact, Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn will be here in Oakland this Thursday, Dec. 10, for a pair of fundraisers orchestrated by Oakland City Attorney John Russo. First there’s a breakfast event, 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. in the Cathedral Building Gallery at 1615 Broadway, at $150 a head; later, from noon to 2 p.m., it’s a luncheon at Levende East, 827 Washington St. in East Oakland, at $300 a head.

Russo’s invitation says that Hahn, a councilwoman since 2001 and part of a Los Angeles political dynasty – she’s the sister of former mayor James Hahn, daughter of former county supervisor Kenneth Hahn and niece of former city councilman Gordon Hahn – “is a courageous leader who provides a voice for those that most need to be heard.”

He praised her work against gangs, for modernizing LAX and to cut truck pollution at the Port of Los Angeles, and said she understands ho government affects “real people and small businesses.”

“I have worked with Janice Hahn for many years. I know she will be a great ally and supporter for Oakland. Janice will bring the leadership to Sacramento that local communities actually need,” Russo wrote. “I believe Janice Hahn will bring necessary change to the state capitol. Please join me in supporting her. Come meet her for yourself.”

Dean FlorezMeanwhile, Hahn’s rival for the Democratic nominiation, state Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez, D-Shafter, is working Southern California for much bigger bucks. His fundraiser one week from tonight, on Monday, Dec. 14, at the Regency Club in Los Angeles is co-hosted by Hollywood luminaries such as Martin Sheen, Jerry Zucker and David Geffen; tickets start at $2,000 and range up to $13,000 for event co-chairs.

Three days after that, on Thursday, Dec. 17, Florez’ fundraising tickets are more modestly priced but the visuals should be much better – it’s “One HOT December Night” of salsa dancing at trendy nightclub The Mayan in Los Angeles, with tickets running from $20 up to $6,500.

Florez was elected to the state Senate in 2002, and served in the Assembly for four years before that.


John Russo’s YouTube contrition

Last week, Oakland City Attorney John Russo got nailed for driving without a seat belt during the national “Click it or Ticket” crackdown.

Today, Russo advised me to search for his name on YouTube, and here’s what I found:

Per the blurb written by Oaklandishgirl, who posted the video: “John Russo, Oakland City Attorney, caught in the national police campaign to catch seat belt scofflaws, was ticketed for failing to wear his seat belt, as he was driving away with his two sons from Fenton’s Ice Cream Parlor in Oakland. Both the Oakland Tribune and the SF Chronicle ran feature stories, see ‘Oakland City Attorney Nabbed in Seat Belt Sting’ (Oak Tribune 5/24/07). Here Mr. Russo provides a public service announcement to remind the public to buckle up … it not only saves lives … it’s the LAW.”

Incidentally, the conversation in which Russo told me about this was conducted while he was on his cell phone … and in his car. But that’s not illegal; I trust he was using a hands-free apparatus.