LA City Clerk: Bonin Recall Campaign Signatures ‘Insufficient’

By Micaela Ricaforte
Micaela Ricaforte
Micaela Ricaforte
January 18, 2022 Updated: January 18, 2022

LOS ANGELES—The efforts to recall Los Angeles City Councilman Mike Bonin screeched to a halt after the city clerk announced on Jan. 18 the verified signatures filed by the campaign are insufficient.

City Clerk Holly Wolcott said in a press release that the petition was found to have a total of 25,965 valid signatures—1,352 less than the 27,317 required.

Venice Beach residents Nico Ruderman and Katrina Schmitt initiated the recall campaign in June and submitted in November 39,188 signatures—well over 27,400, the number required to trigger a recall election.

This means that about 13,223 signatures were not verified by the city clerk.

In December, the city clerk confirmed that enough “raw signatures” were collected for the petition to proceed to the verification stage, and the city clerk’s office must verify and announce the results within 30 days after the submission of signatures.

Bonin responded to the recall’s failure in a tweet thread on Jan. 18.

“Today is the end of a wasteful, distracting abuse of the electoral process. But it’s nowhere near the end of attacks on our progressive values and solutions to homelessness,” he tweeted.

The councilman went on to call recalls a “right-wing” tactic to “undermine progress” in California.

“[The recalls] exploit frustration and organize it into campaigns in favor of failed, expensive responses to homelessness & crime. Those issues (and how we respond) — will shape every race in LA this year,” Bonin tweeted.

Bonin was elected to District 11’s council seat in 2014 and reelected in 2017 by winning 71 percent of the vote. During his election campaign, Bonin promised to address crime, safety, and homelessness in the district.

However, Recall Bonin 2021’s website claims Bonin failed to address these issues as homelessness and crime have been growing in the area.

In 2020, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority reported more than 3,200 homeless people living on the streets in Bonin’s district—up from the previous year’s 2,339 unhoused.

“Under Mike Bonin’s watch, the humanitarian crisis of the homeless population is growing exponentially. Tax-payer money is squandered. Fires. Struggling local businesses. Crime is rampant and rising. Neighborhoods and schools are unsafe. We feel afraid to visit public beaches and community parks,” the recall campaign’s website stated. “After seven years of this self-serving incumbent career politician, we have had enough, and we can’t wait any longer.”

Nico Ruderman, one of the recall campaign organizers, was not immediately available for comment.