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Morning Brief: The Next L.A. Mayor, Monkeypox Emergency, Digital Minimalism

A graphic reads "Meet Your Mayor" and "A political matchmaking quiz for voters" with portraits of Karen Bass and Rick Caruso.
(Alborz Kamalizad
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Aug. 5.

It’s finally Friday. I’m thinking about the beach — if weather permits, of course — and dinner plans. Choices — ya know? And you may have to make a very important one at the end of the year.

Who’s going to be your next mayor?

That crowded field of candidates to replace outgoing L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti is now down to two: Karen Bass, who received 43.11% of votes in the primary, and Rick Caruso, who got 35.99%.

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You’ve probably been inundated with advertisements and news coverage. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s any easier to make your choice.

That’s why we brought you Meet Your Mayor for this election. It’s a quiz that asks you and the candidates the same questions so that we can "match" you with the person who's closest to you on key issues, such as housing, homelessness, policing, and the climate emergency.

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Here’s an example: Back in June, we asked the candidates where they stood on the size of the L.A. Police Department and funding for the force. Bass said she would fill vacancies to bring the force to its fully authorized size of 9,700 officers, while Caruso said he would expand LAPD to 10,000 or more officers. Caruso also said he would increase funding for LAPD, while Bass said she would keep funding at its current size.

We heard from many of you that the quiz helped you make your choice (yay!), so we’re doing it again for the November runoff. We’ll publish our new quiz in early October to get you ballot ready.

What we need to know from you right now is what you want us to ask the candidates. We’ve already gotten a bunch of questions, including:

  • How Bass and Caruso plan to reduce hurdles to building new housing units
  • Where they stand on the eviction protections put in place at the beginning of the pandemic
  • How they’ll reduce the stigma around monkeypox vaccinations

Got a question for Bass and Caruso as you prepare to vote? Share it here.

As always, stay happy and healthy, folks. There’s more news below the fold.

What Else You Need To Know

Before You Go... Practicing Digital Minimalism

An illustration of a foot kicking through the screen of a smartphone with the word CRASH written above.
(Valeriy Kachaev/Spruce Books)
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Have you been scrolling past TikTok after TikTok after another and you look at the clock and it's wayyy past your bedtime? I’m guilty. (This week I’ve been getting stuck on the Bad Bunny concert videos.)

But the thing is that many of us are hooked on our phones. Social media, apps, texting — you know how it goes. A recent survey claimed Americans check their phones once every 4 minutes, according to NPR.

Don’t trip, there are ways to scale back without going back to a flip phone.

There’s a term for it, too: digital minimalism. It was coined by a computer science professor who wrote a book on it. Check out this NPR story that has steps on how to find a good balance in your relationship with your phone.

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