A pittance of registered voters showed up at polls in Los Angeles on Wednesday after enduring months of eye-rolling political ads to select Eric Garcetti and Wendy Greuel for the coming mayoral runoff.
While at the polls, a scant 16-percent of LA’s voters overwhelmingly shot down a new ½ cent on-the-dollar tax proposed by the city. Los Angeles already has one of the highest tax rates in California, a state known for some of the highest state taxes in the U.S.
The outgoing mayor and city managers had already dug themselves a deep hole in the budget, managing to create at least a $216 million annual deficit that the new mayor will have to fill despite the fact that both of the mayoral candidates opposed the new tax during their campaigns.
Both candidates are veteran players in the administration of the deficit-ridden city they seek to lead, which some pundits say accounts for the particularly poor voter turnout.
Regardless of which politician wins, Los Angeles residents can be relatively sure that they face more cutbacks and higher taxes in the near future, as governance according to the status quo remains intact.
Among the status-quo camps set to lead city council are a pro-union faction and another side financed by such windfalls as a million-dollar donation by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.