Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

State Assemblymember Richard Bloom Sets His Cap for County Supervisor Seat to be Vacated by Sheila Kuehl

Bloom authored two controversial land-use bills this year and voted aye on three others.

State Assemblymember Richard Bloom announced he will run for Los Angeles County Supervisor in 2022. There are five county supervisors, representing roughly 10 million people in Los Angeles county. Incumbents are generally voted back into office but present supervisor Sheila Kuehl has said she will not seek a third term when her service ends at the close of 2022. This gives an opportunity to the progressive Westside Bloom, currently representing District 50 in the State Assembly. Prior to his stint in the state legislature, Bloom spent over 10 years on the Santa Monica City Council and served as Santa Monica's mayor.

Bloom referenced Kuehl in his statement regarding his run for supervisor, saying he wanted to "build on Supervisor Kuehl's progressive legacy." Kuehl, however, has yet to endorse Bloom or any other potential candidate.

Bloom was elected to the legislature in 2012 and will term out in 2024, after which he is not eligible for election to either branch of the state legislature.

In his statement regarding his intention to run for county supervisor, Bloom pointed to the issues he considers priorities: solutions to the housing and homelessness crisis, improving public and mental health, and reforming the justice system. His campaign for supervisor claims Bloom has been "a strong environmental leader" and a "stalwart advocate" for renter protections. Bloom says he wants to create "an equitable economic recovery" from the pandemic. He does not want to "return to 'business as usual' but to create a more just LA County with opportunity for all."

Bloom authored two controversial land-use bills this year and voted aye on three others. His proposed law, AB 3107, would have directed local governments to allow housing developments to be as high or as dense as any existing such height or density within a half mile. Other bills he supported took similar measures to force California cities to increase the density of their housing, expand height limits, and allow multi-family housing in historically single-family home neighborhoods.

Bloom was among a set of Assemblymembers who introduced AB 331, a law requiring a semester of ethnic studies for high school graduation. The law's attendant proposed curriculum involved critical race theory, the view that all groups vie for power and oppression over other groups (with whites as the principal oppressor). The legislation provoked so much anger from Jewish and other factions, who saw the curriculum as anti-Semitic, that Governor Newsom declined to sign in, and it died.

Bloom also authored the bill that ended orca shows in California.

In the private sphere, Bloom practiced family law for almost 30 years and served as executive director of two nonprofit organizations, Levitt & Quinn Family Law Center and PATH, a homeless services and housing agency.

Members of the dominant Democrat Party in California tend not to challenge each other for prime spots. Ted Lieu, for example, did not run for U.S. Representative until Henry Waxman retired. Bloom did not announce his run for supervisor until Kuehl announced her own retirement, at age 80. It is unlikely Bloom will face any serious competition.


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