Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


John Podesta Just Trying To Figure Out Whether Eric Garcetti Is Really Hispanic, Wikileaks Reveals

Hillary Clinton (R) talks with Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti (L) during a roundtable discussion at the University of Southern California on March 24, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Support your source for local news!
Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. The local news you read here every day is crafted for you, but right now, we need your help to keep it going. In these uncertain times, your support is even more important. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership. Thank you.

Don't feel left out, Los Angeles! It seems our very own mayor got a few shout-outs among the risotto-making tricks and "doofus" Bernie Sanders comments in the recent Wikileaks dump of John Podesta's emails. Podesta serves as chairman of the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign.

Mayor Eric Garcetti's name appears quite a few times in Podesta's inbox over the years, with mentions from both this election cycle and way back in 2008. We'll be honest with you, the vast majority of the Garcetti search results stem from the fact that Podesta seems to have been too polite to unsubscribe from our mayor's very active mailing list, but there are also a few good nuggets mixed in with all of the mayoral spam. And for anyone who hasn't been paying attention, Garcetti endorsed then-Senator Barack Obama against Clinton early on in the '08 race, but endorsed Clinton in 2015 and has since actively campaigned for her at L.A. events.

Perhaps most interesting is a late 2008 exchange between Podesta and his chief of staff, Sarah Latham, just trying to answer the question more than a few Angelenos have asked: is Garcetti *actually* Hispanic?

"Did we figure out whether he is italian or latino?" Podesta emailed Latham in November 2008 from his BlackBerry (aww, 2008!), trying to nail down the heritage of our Mexican-American, Jewish-Italian "kosher burrito"mayor.

Support for LAist comes from

Latham wrote back four hours later to inform Podesta that:

Eric Garcetti IS a 4th generation Angelino, descendant of Mexican immigrants.." (but again, Janet M. said they don't consider him hispanic)

Per the guesswork of borderline-reputable-at-best, Tucker Carlson-owned news source The Daily Caller, "Janet M." is likely Janet Murguía, the president and CEO of the Hispanic advocacy group the National Council of La Raza, which would make sense.

Garcetti's name also starts showing up again in Podesta's emails with some regularity as the 2016 election cycle gets underway. In June of last year, former Deputy Secretary of State Tom Nides emailed Podesta to say that Garcetti wanted to endorse Clinton and meet with her on her upcoming West Coast trip, leading to some back and forth between Podesta and other Clinton staffers about how Garcetti had been "cranky that HRC hadn't called him yet." Further along in the exchange, Podesta writes that "he" (presumably Garcetti) is "like a real friend of mine," which is very nice, especially in politics!

And by March of this year, it seems Podesta has decided that Garcetti is, in fact, Hispanic enough to be considered Hispanic. In a March 2016 email, Podesta shoots off a list of almost 40 names to be considered as possible VP picks, sorted in "rough food groups," and Garcetti's "food group" also includes Ken Salazar, Javier Becerra, Julian Castro, Tom Perez and Kevin DeLeon.

Most Read