Congresswoman Karen Bass has won the Los Angeles mayor’s race, despite being outspent 11 to 1 by her opponent, developer Rick Caruso. Currently, Bass leads with 53.06% of the vote.
Caruso conceded the race Wednesday.
"We need to unite around Mayor-elect Bass and give her the support she needs to tackle the many issues we face,” Caruso said.
Those issues include rampant homelessness as well numerous scandals and corruption at City Hall.
Bass will be the first woman and the first Black woman to ever serve as mayor. The City Attorney’s Office will also be helmed by its first woman, Hydee Feldstein Soto, who declared victory over her opponent Faisal Gill on Wednesday. Lindsey Horvath is poised to win the race for the LA County Board of Supervisors' 5th District, which would maintain the board's all-female status.
“Los Angeles is really experiencing what I would call a moment in women’s leadership in history,” USC political science and international relations department chair Ange-Marie Hancock Alfaro told the Los Angeles Times.
Before her election to Congress, Bass served six years in the California State Assembly, including two years as speaker. She founded the Community Coalition in 1990, a community-based social justice organization in South L.A.
Bass was backed by the Democratic Party and had earned endorsements from Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Hillary Clinton. Caruso, a former Republican, had switched his registration to Democrat just before entering the race.
In a statement, Mayor-Elect Bass promised sweeping change:
“We are going to solve homelessness.
We are going to prevent and respond urgently to crime.
Los Angeles is no longer going to be unaffordable for working families — good jobs and affordable housing construction are on the way.
And know this — that work has already begun.”
Image Credit: U.S. House of Representatives