Downtown entrepreneur Jessica Lall exits Los Angeles mayoral race

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Downtown business leader Jessica Lall ended her brief mayoral campaign on Tuesday, saying she believes the mark of a good leader is to be brave enough to step up, but also ” wise enough to know when to take a step back”.

Lall, president and CEO of downtown group of companies Central City Assn., entered the race in late September. Much of his campaign has focused on tackling homelessness, including a proposal to create a new city agency to coordinate the response to the crisis.

In a statement, Lall said her campaign was “designed to inspire women, mothers, South Asians and youth” to recognize their power and participate in the political process. She urged her supporters “not to feel defeated or demoralized”.

Lall’s long-term candidacy appeared to gain momentum in recent months, and she said she raised $404,134 in the latest disclosure. That sum, though well below the nearly $2 million raised by apparent frontrunner Rep. Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles), and the totals of the other three top contenders, City Atty. Mike Feuer and city councilors Kevin de León and Joe Buscaino were more than any other foreign candidate.

Bill Carrick, the political strategist advising Lall’s campaign, said she has yet to decide whether or not to endorse another candidate.

With the deadline for submitting mayoral candidates on Saturday, it is widely believed that billionaire property developer Rick Caruso will enter the race – a move that would radically reshape the landscape of the race. Jessica Duboff, his deputy campaign manager, said Lall had no recent conversations with Caruso.

Councilman Mike Bonin, who represents the Westside district where Lall lives, recently dropped out of his run for the 2022 council. Lall has no plans to run for Bonin’s seat, Duboff said.

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