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Fabian Núñez, a California politician who needs to go

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Núñez represents downtown Los Angeles, to the south of, and East LA in the state assembly. It is rumored he wants to run for Mayor.

It is not like Democrat Fabian Núñez, Speaker of the California State Assembly, is some bogus politician with bad intentions and total self-serving motives. I am not going to argue with him for looking into universal preschool, high speed rail and global warming solutions for California; in fact, I applaud those efforts. Yet, the recent LA Times investigative exposé on the 46th District Assemblyman's luxurious world travels paid for by campaign funds is starting to boil my blood.

The spending, listed in mandatory filings with the state, includes $47,412 on United, Lufthansa and Air France airlines this year; $8,745 at the exclusive Hotel Arts in Barcelona, Spain; $5,149 for a "meeting" at Cave L'Avant Garde, a wine seller in the Bordeaux region of France; a total of $2,562 for two "office expenses" at Vuitton, two years apart; and $1,795 for a "meeting" at Le Grand Colbert, a venerable Parisian restaurant. Nuñez also spent $2,934 at Colosseum Travel in Rome, and paid $505 to the European airline Spanair.

Other expenses are closer to home: a $1,715 meeting at Asia de Cuba restaurant in West Hollywood; a $317 purchase at upscale Pavilion Salon Shoes in Sacramento; a $2,428 meeting at 58 Degrees and Holding, a Sacramento wine bar and bistro; and $800 spent at Dollar Rent a Car in Kihei, Hawaii.


"There's not too big a difference," [Núñez] said, "between how I live and how most middle-class people live."

While these are not tax dollars he's spending, there's still an issue here. Doug Heller of the
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Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights in Santa Monica told the Times that "when his campaigns are funding [the luxurious expenses], you have to wonder: Who does he owe for this lifestyle? That's the problem."