Joe Biden Taps Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti To Serve As Ambassador To India

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti will be nominated as U.S. Ambassador to India, as President Joe Biden made official the long-expected choice.

We hear that Garcetti plans to stay on as mayor until he is confirmed.

If confirmed in the Senate, Garcetti’s departure would create a vacancy in the city’s highest office. His term expires on December 11, 2022.

According to the city charter, the City Council could appoint a person to fill the position through the end of the term. It also could call a special election to fill the vacancy through the end of the term and appoint someone to hold the office temporarily until that special election’s results are certified.

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Pending any appointment or election of a new mayor, the City Council President Nury Martinez would act as mayor. She reportedly has been weighing whether to run for mayor in next year’s election, joining a race that already includes Councilman Joe Buscaino and City Attorney Mike Feuer.

In a statement, Garcetti said: “I have committed my life to service –– as an activist, as a teacher, as a naval officer, as a public servant, and if confirmed, next as an ambassador. Part of that commitment means that when your nation calls, you answer that call. And should I be confirmed, I’ll bring this same energy, commitment, and love for this city to my new role and will forge partnerships and connections that will help strengthen Los Angeles’ place on the world stage.”

Garcetti’s plans to depart his post come at an inflection point for the city, struggling with homelessness and the lingering effects of the pandemic. There are are increasing concerns of rising Covid-19 cases and the Delta variant emerges.

The mayor also could face questions at his confirmation hearing over how he has handled the case of a former adviser, Rick Jacobs, accused of sexual harassment by a member of Garcetti’s security team. The lawsuit accused Garcetti of witnessing the behavior, but he has denied it. Jacobs also has denied the sexual harassment claims.

Garcetti was elected mayor in 2013 and re-elected in 2017. His latest term lasts for 5 1/2 years because the city elections were aligned with the November midterms.

More to come.

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