Nithya Raman, Progressive Hollywood Favorite, Wins Los Angeles City Council Seat

Nithya Raman has won a fiercely contested race for Los Angeles City Council, beating incumbent council member David Ryu.

“The voters of district four have spoken, and I respect the outcome of this election,” Ryu said in a statement Friday.

Raman won 52.5% of the vote in contrast to Ryu’s 47.5%, according to the L.A. Times tally.

Raman, an urban planner who also co-founded SELAH Neighborhood Homeless Coalition, mobilized an estimated 2,000 young and progressive voters to work on her campaign in a rare show of enthusiasm for a city council race.

Former councilman and supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky told the L.A. Times that her election represents “a political earthquake” for City Hall.

With her platform, she argued that the council, which is made up of 13 Democrats and one independent, has failed to make significant changes to policing, homelessness, rent control and clean energy.

Raman is also the former director of Time’s Up’s entertainment division, which attracted a slew of celebrity and industry endorsements to her campaign.

Natalie Portman and Jane Fonda were both featured in videos supporting her candidacy. Mike Schur, Nick Offerman, Adam Scott and Aubrey Plaza took part in a virtual fundraiser in early September.

“Girls” writer Jenni Konner tweeted “The Nithya Raman win makes me feel so hopefully for the city.”

“I think I was guilty like a lot of people of focusing a bit too much on national-level issues,” Jesse Zwick, a film and TV writer who has volunteered on Raman’s campaign, told Variety in September. “But as the homelessness crisis kept getting worse, I felt I had to do something. Nithya has done a good job of showing how much we could be doing if we paid attention and expected more of city officials.”

Ryu was first elected five years ago, becoming the first Korean American on the city council. He captured 44.7% of the vote in the March primary, while Raman came in second with 41.1%.

The City Council 4 district runs from Silver Lake to Sherman Oaks, covering many wealthy neighborhoods popular with industry insiders.

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