His term expiring, Garcetti pushes hard for job as ambassador to India
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Mayor Eric Garcetti on Sunday officially nominated for the seat of ambassador to India — a position Garcetti, who is up for re-election in a few weeks, hopes will lead to a greater role for the city in India.
Garcetti told reporters that the mayor’s job had come up and he saw his two choices — ambassador to India or to Russia, as mayor — and liked the one he had. He also said he liked his chances as ambassador to India, which would have the additional advantage of bringing his wife, Renee, into the political arena.
“They’re both wonderful,” Garcetti said.
Garcetti also said he was leaning toward applying for the United States Senate seat in California. His candidacy also could open his own political campaign.
“I feel like I’ve been thinking about running for office my whole life,” Garcetti said. His father was a public school teacher in Los Angeles in the 1940s.
“I’ve always been interested in politics,” Garcetti said. “I’ve always wanted to be mayor of California.”
Garcetti has been campaigning for the ambassador job for weeks, raising millions of dollars and promising a role for the city in South Asia.
He said he is willing to run on issues of social justice and peace and that he wants the appointment to be for a two-year term and no longer than seven.
Garcetti is the first candidate for mayor to seek the seat, which was created by former mayor Art Agnos as a way to reward him for his work as attorney general.
Garcetti said he would seek a second term as mayor before running for the seat, and would have no problem resigning to run for the Senate job if it were offered.