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The LA Times Finally Notices That Thiefy Delgadillo Is Crooked
July 3, they call for him to do "the honorable thing," and resign. Here's an excerpt from the piece on the LAT op-ed page:

Rocky Delgadillo's pattern of misconduct makes him unfit to serve as L.A.'s city attorney.

CITY ATTY. Rocky Delgadillo came to office with sterling credentials and the support of some of Los Angeles' most esteemed leaders. He had a captivating personal story — Eastside kid who did well, went to Harvard, then to Columbia, then on to one of the nation's most impressive law firms and City Hall, where he worked for Mayor Richard Riordan. In short, Delgadillo had the drive, the education and the support to be one of this city's leading public officials. Instead, he has squandered those advantages on egocentrism and bad judgment, falling well short of the high standards required of an office that prosecutes others for offenses such as he has committed. He should resign.

We take no delight in this position. It is never a happy sight to watch a public leader contort in the media glare the way Delgadillo has in recent weeks. But the evidence of misconduct has mounted too steadily — and the roots of Delgadillo's troubles go back too far — to sanction his continued role in Los Angeles government.

There were warning indicators from the beginning. During his first race for elected office, Delgadillo received the support of billboard companies, which donated $424,000 worth of space to his campaign to defeat City Councilman Mike Feuer. When Delgadillo's office later negotiated agreements that allowed hundreds of illegal billboards to receive permits, critics accused Delgadillo of cutting a soft deal to benefit his benefactors. Then, when one of those companies was accused of vandalism for allegedly destroying city trees, Delgadillo's staff closed the case after a cursory investigation, refueling the suspicions of that relationship. The resulting spectacle of fines by the Ethics Commission and attacks from clean-government advocates was particularly dispiriting in that the target was the official elected to police such laws. Those concerns were amplified by reports of fudging on Delgadillo's political resume — he claimed to have gone to Harvard on a football scholarship, then revised that; he also claimed to have been an "All-American," then acknowledged that he was an honorable mention — and rapid staff churn, as capable senior officials in the office came and went with alarming speed.

Of course, June 20, the moment I saw how he'd snaked taxpayers into paying for damage by his wife to a city-owned vehicle she was not supposed to have been driving, I began pressing people to write the mayor (mayor@lacity.org -- it's not too late to do it now) to pressure him for his resignation. (Why should we have a recall? That would cost us taxpayers money.)

This guy's the city attorney -- Mr. Law & Order. If he thinks obeying the law is for other people, some other person who thinks differently should have his job.

Posted by aalkon at July 4, 2007 5:31 AM

Comments

pressure him for his resignation?

Posted by: jerry at July 4, 2007 8:26 AM

Thanks! I think I'll change that!

Posted by: Amy Alkon at July 4, 2007 8:47 AM

Miniscule point here, but...All of Harvard College's financial aid is need-based. ALL. It doesn't HAVE football scholarships, or ANY type of athletic scholarship. (And none of the other Harvard schools play football.) The same is generally true of the other Ivies. This is why the Ivies, many of which were once quite strong in football, are now in a different league football-wise than schools such as USC, UT, University of Miami, what have you. Mainstream journalism is lousy with Ivy League types, all of whom should know this without even having to think about it, and no one caught this? Great work, LAT.

Posted by: marion at July 4, 2007 9:31 AM

You've reminded me of something I really detest about a number of people who've gone to Harvard. Some people -- too many people -- manage to get that fact out right when you meet them. There are other ways of insecurity manifesting itself, sure, but I find this one particularly annoying (if helpful for telling me the person probably isn't somebody I want to spend a lot of time around).

Cool Harvard grads are people like a friend of mine whose Harvard affilliation I only learned when he invited me, probably a year after I met him, to a really interesting speaker session put on by the Harvard alumni association.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at July 4, 2007 9:44 AM

And P.S. It's possible to get a good college education at a community college, as one of my old assistants did. She went to Santa Monica college, and is whip-smart, educated, and speaks three languages fluently.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at July 4, 2007 9:46 AM

Kaus gives props to Luke Ford for leading coverage of the other scandal in city government. (Kevin Roderick ought to do so as well, but seems paradoxically uncomfortable with this whole "blogger" thing)

Posted by: Crid at July 4, 2007 9:56 AM

Amy, it's said that there are two types of Harvard alumni: Those who tell you that they went to Harvard within five minutes of meeting you, and those who respond to all inquiries about where they went to college with, "Up North. You?" You are wise to be wary of those who feel that their attendance at Hahvahd is the most important thing about them (not that you need my approval, but you get my point).

And it's possible to get a good college education wherever you go, IMHO. You may have to apply yourself more at some schools than at others to get a top-notch education, but that's all. What the top-ranked schools *tend* to have more of are resources, connections, and ability to impress SOME future recruiters. I wouldn't say that going to one is a waste of time, but the people who believe you can ONLY get a good education at one are people with cramped minds.

Anyway, hope this guy, whatever his college background, is gone from his post pretty soon. Whatta maroon.

Posted by: marion at July 4, 2007 4:51 PM

> I began pressing people to write the mayor

How about also writing the California Bar?

Posted by: Doobie at July 5, 2007 1:05 AM

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