Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Monday, August 8, 2011


Page 1


Reports: Legal Community Does Not Back Trutanich


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Support from the legal community for City Attorney Carmen Trutanich’s possible campaign to become the county’s top prosecutor is not as strong as it is for some of the declared candidates in the race, according to filings obtained from the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder.

Although Trutanich’s “exploratory campaign” garnered more money from the largest number donors in the first half of this year than any of the declared candidates, he attracted fewer contributions from attorneys, law firms and judges than Deputy District Attorneys Mario Trujillo and Danette Meyers.

Trutanich reported $493,959.97 in contributions from 655 donors, which included 110 members of the legal community.

The city attorney raised more than double the amount of money garnered by Trujillo, but Trujillo reported 223 members of the legal community as being among his 530 donors. Meyers’s report indicated that 113 of her 159 financial supporters were bench officers, attorneys and law firms.

Among those backing Trutanich were Judges John David Lord, Peter Mirich and Tomson Ong and the law firms of Mayer Brown and Nixon Peabody.

Trutanich gave $1,000 to his own campaign, as did his son, Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicholas Trutanich. Four other donors to the campaign also shared Trutanich’s last name.

Other donors included John Franklin, director of communications for the city attorney’s office, Trutanich’s campaign strategist John Shallman, and City Councilman Dennis Zine.

Trujillo, in the first half of this year, has reported collecting $254,111.90 in contributions, and a $10,000 loan to himself. After spending $35,931.54 during the reporting period, he still has $233,084.67 left.

Of the candidates, he has received the most support from the bench, having garnered contributions from Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Peter Espinoza, Robert Higa, Yvette Palazuelos, Olivia Rosales, Raul Sahagun, Yvonne Sanchez and Teresa Sanchez-Gordon.

Bench support for Meyers has came from Judges Allen Webster and Yvette Verastegui, and Commissioner Matthew St. George. She has reported $68,904 in contributions, and expenses of $15,344.21, leaving her with $54,700.68.

Judge Arthur Lew, along with retired Judges William Pounders and William Chidsey have given to Deputy District Attorney Alan Jackson’s campaign. Jackson’s report states that 70 of his 210 listed supporters are lawyers and firms.

His most recent filing with elections officials reports that he collected $111,910 in contributions, and made the largest outlays of any candidate so far, spending $119,734. However, he had a beginning balance of $107,205.69, so he has $89,673 on hand.

Donor lists for Chief Deputy District Attorney Jacqueline Lacey and Deputy District Attorney Steve Ipsen were not available online on Friday, but summaries provided by elections officials report that Lacey gathered $99,359.80 in cash contributions, spent $13,350.35, and has $86,709 on hand.

Ipsen raised the least amount of money—a reported $24,426.98 in monetary contributions—and spent $3,390.56, leaving him with $21,036.

Deputy District Attorney Bobby Grace currently has the least amount of fiscal reserves for his campaign, even though he appears to have the greatest number of supporters who, while perhaps unwilling to open their wallets, connect with him via social media networks.

Grace, in a campaign finance report obtained from elections officials Friday, listed 167 donors—68 of whom were identified as attorneys or law firms—who collectively gave a total $34,130.12 between January and June of this year. Most of his donors also made contributions far less than the $1,000 individual maximum.

The candidate also received no fiscal backing from any judges, and to date, has only listed four endorsements on his campaign website—those of Allison Matsumoto, president of the Japanese American Bar Association in her individual capacity; former Los Angeles City Controller Rick Tuttle, former City Councilwoman Rita Walters, and Deputy District Attorney Gilbert Wright, president of Black Prosecutors Los Angeles.

Tuttle was listed among the donors as having given Grace $350, while Wright contributed $500.

After spending $22,550.67 during the reporting period, Grace said he was left with only $17,179.45. However, a search of Facebook—a resource being embraced by all of the candidates—indicates that 735 users “like” Grace’s campaign page and follow his postings. Grace also has 1,963 “friends” on a separate page.

The only other candidate whose Facebook following rivals Grace, is Trujillo, who also happens to have raised the most money out of all the declared candidates. Trujillo’s campaign maintains two pages, one of which has 690 “likes” and the other which has 318.

Lacey trails a distant third, with 50 “likes” on her official page, and 243 “friends” on a separate page. Meyers has 262 followers on her campaign page, and Jackson, 241. Trutanich’s exploratory campaign page has attracted 188 followers, and Ipsen, 142.


Copyright 2011, Metropolitan News Company