Since the day he took office, Mayor Eric Garcetti has been an obstacle to progress in Los Angeles.
The city has been disproportionately hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the nation in large part because of his lack of leadership. The virus has served to unmask several critical failures in his left-leaning policies, exposing how many of his shortcomings created a slate of problems that are holding Angelenos back as they struggle to deal with the hardships caused not just by the past several months, but by the seven years he has been in office.
One of the most prominent and distressing examples of Mayor Garcetti’s failed leadership has been in how he has addressed the outbreak itself. News recently broke that California had far surpassed its daily record for new COVID-19 cases with 6,000 new confirmed cases in a single day, 2,000 of which were in Los Angeles County alone. This is the fourth time Los Angeles County had 2,000 new cases in a single day.
Unfortunately, this was shortly followed by the news that Los Angeles residents were almost completely unable to get tested for COVID-19 just ahead of a busy Fourth of July weekend. Mayor Garcetti and his administration were wholly unprepared to handle a public health emergency ahead of a major holiday, which sadly is reflective of other repeated failures throughout his time in office that have caused significant economic and social hardships for the city.
Few sectors in the city have been harder hit by Mayor Garcetti’s failed policies than the Los Angeles business community. In June, Los Angeles City Controller Ron Galperin announced that the city had lost north of 300,000 jobs since the pandemic began, leaving a staggering 20.3 percent of the city’s population without work. These job losses disproportionately hurt communities of color that Mayor Garcetti claims to advocate for, representing yet another unfulfilled promise.
While Mayor Garcetti likes to pin these numbers solely on shutdowns due to COVID-19, the truth is that this is a continuation of a trend that started when he essentially abandoned his promise to eliminate the city’s business tax. Many businesses found the tax burdensome even before the pandemic began, and it has doubtlessly hastened their exit from the city as the crisis continues, serving as a main driver of the area’s job losses.
Homelessness, long one of the biggest worries looming over the struggling people of Los Angeles, has also been worsened by Mayor Garcetti’s policies. More than 66,000 Angelenos are currently without a home, and that number has been on the rise, especially in the years since Mayor Garcetti won a second term. With the jobless rates (and Los Angeles housing prices) on the rise, that number could very likely grow in the weeks and months ahead.
While the city said it was aiming to house 15,000 homeless individuals who have a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 in local hotels, those promises have so far proved hollow. In fact, those efforts have only secured roughly a quarter of that number of promised rooms. With data indicating that COVID-19 spreads more quickly through the city’s homeless population, things only stand to get worse under Mayor Garcetti’s leadership.
Mayor Garcetti’s consistent failure to lead has even spawned a recall effort, and rightfully so. Each of these problems existed well before COVID-19 hit the U.S., due largely to his failed leadership. Now, because of his shortsighted liberal policies, these problems are getting far worse. Mayor Garcetti has stood idly by while the virus does unprecedented damage to Los Angeles, simply watching as a wounded and leaderless city struggles to navigate the most dangerous public health crisis in decades.
Throughout his tenure as mayor, Garcetti has shown time and again that he is unfit to lead Los Angeles toward a more prosperous future. Despite repeated campaign promises to address some of the city’s most pressing issues, he has not only failed to solve them, he has made them worse. Now he claims the coronavirus is creating problems that are, in fact, his doing. The virus is just serving as the spotlight directing public attention to them.
- L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Failed Policies Exposed By COVID-19 - July 14, 2020