LOS ANGELES — If Mayor Eric Garcetti chooses to run for president, he need not worry about a local backlash, as a majority of county residents said in a new survey released Sept. 22 that they would support the move.
The question was asked of Los Angeles County residents as part of a survey conducted by the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University.
“At least in his hometown, Mayor Garcetti polls strongly as a potential candidate for president,” said Fernando Guerra, director of the center.
“Naturally, it’s far too soon to tell what kind of support that could translate into outside of Los Angeles. But as of today, he’d have L.A.’s backing.”
After taking a number of steps that some political observers have seen as preliminary maneuvering to running for president in 2020, Garcetti has not ruled out a presidential run when asked directly by reporters over the last few months — but he also has not ruled out a run for governor of California in 2018.
Garcetti, a Democrat, recently visited New Hampshire to support a mayoral candidate in Manchester.
The visit to the site of the nation’s first presidential primary during the August trip also included cocktails in the Hamptons at the estate of billionaire Ronald Perelman, a major political donor.
The mayor also recently appeared at Democratic Party events in Wisconsin and at the Center for American Progress’ Ideas Conference in Washington, D.C.
According to the survey, 63 percent of the 914 respondents said they would be “strongly supportive” or “somewhat supportive” of Garcetti launching a bid for the White House.
Support for a Garcetti presidential run was strongest among Latinos (73 percent), voters aged 30-44 (69 percent), and those earning less than $40,000 a year (74 percent). Those with advanced graduate degrees or earning more than $100,000 annually were the only groups mostly opposed.
Even among residents who self-identified as conservative, 51 said they supported a Garcetti candidacy.