Former Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva is expected today to formally announce he will run against Supervisor Janice Hahn in the March primary.
Villanueva said in an interview Tuesday night on Fox 11 that he would run.
“County government is responsible for the health, safety and welfare of all the county residents. In that regard the board has failed miserably,” Villanueva told Fox 11 Tuesday. “All you have to do is look at the news every day. You’re assaulted by images of violent crime, smash and grab robberies, senseless wanton violence.”
When asked how he can defeat Hahn, whose late father Kenneth was a supervisor from 1952-92 and of whom the Hall of Administration is named in honor, Villanueva responded, “One thing for sure is she is no Kenneth Hahn.
“When he was serving as supervisor, there was a time of civility in county government, balance,” he said. “Today, they’re so far to the left of center that no one can even recognize them. They do not represent the will of anyone, much less the residents of the 4th District, so we’re going to bring this back to the middle.”
In response to an email from City News Service, Hahn’s campaign consultant Dave Jacobson called Villanueva “the Donald Trump of Los Angeles County,” pointing out “L.A. County voters—including District 4—resoundingly rejected” his bid to be re-elected as sheriff in November “for his incompetence and corruption.”
“L.A. County became less safe under Villanueva’s reign,” Jacobson said. “He is a fraud and a failure and L.A. County voters won’t be fooled again.”
Janice Hahn was elected in 2016 and re-elected in 2020 to represent the 4th District, which now stretches from the Palos Verdes Peninsula to Long Beach and north to the southeastern Los Angeles County and the eastern San Gabriel Valley, including Huntington Park, Bell, Commerce, Pico Rivera, Whittier and La Habra Heights.
Villanueva was elected sheriff in 2018, upsetting then-Sheriff Jim McDonnell, but lost his bid for re-election in November to former Long Beach Police Department Chief Robert Luna, 61.3% to 38.7%.
Hahn and Villanueva are both Democrats. The Board of Supervisors, like all local government positions in California, is nonpartisan.
No Los Angeles County supervisor has been defeated for re-election since 1980 when Baxter Ward was denied a third term by Michael D. Antonovich and Yvonne Braithwaite Burke lost her bid for a full term to Deane Dana after being appointed to fill the vacancy caused by James A. Hayes’ resignation.
Villanueva is seeking to be the first man on the board since 2020 when Mark Ridley-Thomas was unable to seek re-election because of term limits.