Key moments in the racist leaked recording of L.A. council members

In what they thought was a private conversation, some of the most powerful figures in Los Angeles politics gathered to discuss the city’s decennial redistribution process. Present were Council President Nury Martinez, Councilors Gil Cedillo and Kevin de León, and Ron Herrera, President of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor. Martinez is now facing demands for his resignation.

The wide-ranging conversation, which focused heavily on council members’ frustration over maps proposed by the city’s 21-member redistribution commission, included racist remarks, crude comments about some of their fellow councillors, and a discussion of how they will be consolidated and preserved can political power.

Martinez and the other Latino leaders present during the recorded conversation appeared unaware that they were being recorded, as Martinez said a white council member treated his young black son like he was an “accessory,” saying that Councilor Mike Bonin’s son “parece changuito‘ or is ‘like a monkey’.

Martinez also taunted Oaxacans, saying “F–that guy… He’s with the blacks,” while discussing Los Angeles County Dist. atty George Gascon.

The conversation, which took place in mid-October 2021, remained private for almost a year until an audio leak blew up into the public domain on Sunday. Here are some of the key moments.

This is an evolving story and will be updated.

Council President Nury Martinez makes racist remarks about Councilor Mike Bonin’s young son as others chime in on this segment of the conversation. The group discussed a dispute between councilors Curren Price and Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who disagreed last year over whose district USC and Exposition Park would represent once the new maps were completed. The clip begins with Martinez recounting a conversation she allegedly had with businessman Danny Bakewell.

Bonin’s son was brought into the conversation as the group discussed a dispute between councilors Curren Price and Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who split last year over whose district USC and Exposition Park would represent once the new maps were completed. Both men are black and represent parts of South Los Angeles.

Martinez told the group she had a conversation with businessman Danny Bakewell about the situation, arguing that if Harris-Dawson is looking for an economic asset for his district, he should seek to take Los Angeles International Airport off the West Side to transfer district from Bonin to his.

“Go get the airport from his little brother — that little bitch Bonin,” Martinez recalled while advising Bakewell.

Martinez said Bonin appeared with his son on a float at a Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade attended by a number of politicians. She also said the child was “an accessory”.

De León seemed to liken Bonin’s handling of the child to “when Nury brings her Goyard bag or the Louis Vuitton bag.”

So negritolike on the side,” Martinez said, using a Spanish diminutive term for a black person that can be considered demeaning.

Martinez suggested that if she and the other women on the wagon hadn’t stepped in to “raise that child,” the child on the wagon was misbehaving and might have overturned the wagon.

“They’re raising him like a little white kid,” Martinez said. “I thought this kid needed a spanking. Let me bring him around the corner and then I’ll bring him back.”

Attack on Oaxacans in Koreatown

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In a recorded conversation about Koreatown and the redistribution, Nury Martinez makes racist comments about Oaxacans and talks about the restriction of council member Nithya Raman.

The discussion later turns to how Koreatown should be handled in the redistribution process. Martinez is open about not giving the area to council member Nithya Raman, or giving her a tenant-heavy district that may be politically more favorable to the progressive council members.

“It serves us not to give her all of K-Town,” Martinez said. “Because if you do that, it will solidify your neighborhood, and it’s not good for any of us. You have to keep her on the fence.”

The group then asked if Shatto Place, a small street, and Lafayette Park were in Koreatown.

“I see a lot of small, small, dark people,” Martinez said of this part of Koreatown, using stereotypes that have long been used against Oaxacans in Mexico and the United States.

“I thought, I don’t know where these people are from, I don’t know what village they came from [from]how they got here,” Martinez said, before adding, “Tan feos” – “They are ugly.”

Martinez on George Gascon

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The topic of conversation has been moved to Dist. atty George Gascón, who faced growing political opposition.

Martinez says “F–that guy… He’s with the black guys” while discussing Los Angeles County Dist. atty George Gascon.

Discussion of the fate of Mark Ridley Thomas

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Councilman Nury Martinez discusses Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas’ relationship with the city following his bribery charges. It’s up to City Controller Ron Galperin to decide whether to still get paid, Martinez said. She then goes on to say that it’s “white” politicians who will mother you in no time.”

Martinez said she explained to another council member that if Council member Mark Ridley-Thomas, who had been charged with corruption, were suspended from the council, City Controller Ron Galperin would decide whether to continue paying him.

“You need to talk to that white man,” she says. “We’re not. It’s the white members on this council who will be mothering you in no time.”

The council later suspended Ridley-Thomas, who is awaiting trial on bribery and other federal charges. Galperin eventually terminated Ridley-Thomas’ pay and health benefits.

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-10-10/listen-audio-excerpts-of-leaked-recording-of-l-a-council-members Key moments in the racist leaked recording of L.A. council members

Alley Einstein

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