LA race for mayor: Rick Caruso and Karen Bass battle for the female vote

Early voting kicks off in a little over two months.

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Friday, August 19, 2022
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Developer Rick Caruso says he wants to hire more women to work for the city of L.A. while Congresswoman Karen Bass says the best way to represent women is to elect the city's first female mayor.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Developer Rick Caruso is making a push for the female vote.

He said 50% of his employees at his company are women, and although 50% of L.A.'s population are female, only 28% of women fill positions working for the city.

That's something Caruso said he would change during a virtual roundtable on Wednesday.

"The way I have structured my company is not only promoting women, celebrating women, making sure they have every equal opportunity, not only to accomplish all of their dreams, but make sure they're accomplishing all of their wishes in terms of their family life," said Caruso.

Another alarming statistic, according to a report by the Los Angeles Controller, women who work for the city of L.A. make only 76% of what men make.

"We want Los Angeles to be the city that women want to come to, work in, have their families here if they choose, invest here and build a business here and feel listened to," said Caruso.

However, Congresswoman Karen Bass, who held five events in the San Fernando Valley Thursday including a breakfast in Sherman Oaks with city leaders, said it's time L.A. had its first female mayor.

"[Caruso] has spent the majority of his life as a Republican, and even when he was independent and went back to being a Republican in 2016, it was to co-chair the Kasich campaign while he was governor, passing legislation to restrict women's right to choose," said Bass.

Eyewitness News has since learned Caruso will step down as CEO of his company on Sept. 1, months earlier than previously planned.

Bass doesn't believe this move is enough as early voting kicks off in a little over two months.

"If he were to be mayor, he would be appointing the head of the planning department, building and safety and all of the other departments involved with his developments and I don't believe just appointment someone to head up his corporation that he would actually be distant from that," said Bass.