Villaraigosa calls Newsom's governor's race strategy 'cynical'

DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Antonio VIllaraigosa took orders at Phillipe The Original in downtown LA as it was packed with Dodgers fans in an effort to remind Angelenos there's an election Tuesday.

"The only poll that I'm depending on is the poll on election night," Villaraigosa said.

Villaraigosa started his day at the La Cienega/Jefferson Metro Station and will hit LA landmarks for 24 hours in a city that holds most of his support. The polls show Democrat Gavin Newsom at the top and Villaraigosa in a tight race for that second spot with Republican John Cox.

Newsom campaigned in Palm Springs Thursday with an evening event in South L.A. Cox met with former presidential candidate Herman Cain in Fresno. Newsom's campaign is already running ads against Cox, a strategy Villaraigosa calls "cynical" and that "he's running ads for John Cox."

Newsom is hoping to avoid an expensive and likely nasty battle to November between Villaraigosa. But, some Democrats believe a Republican candidate for governor on the ballot could boost GOP turnout, hurting the chances for democrats vying for congressional seats.

"Wishful thinking. Fact of the matter is, I think we need to have a debate about the future. Yeah, you would expect that from someone who has never really had to struggle for much. I've had to struggle my whole life and I know that there are a lot of people who are struggling every day," Villaraigosa said.

Villaraigosa will campaign straight until 7 a.m. Friday before traveling the state and then coming back to downtown L.A. for his election night Tuesday.
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