The City of Inglewood begins accepting nominations Monday for candidates interested in finishing out the unexpired term of former Mayor Roosevelt Dorn.
Papers must be returned to the city clerk’s office by March 2.
Dorn was forced to retire because of a plea bargain agreement he made with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office. He pled guilty to a misdemeanor count of conflict of interest involving a homeowner loan he took from a city program.
The election to fill the unexpired term will take place June 8, and coincide with a county election being held that day.
In order to avoid a run-off, a candidate must receive 50% plus one of all votes cast. If no one wins that majority, a run-off would be held in late August.
If there is a clear-cut winner, that person would hold office until November 2010. At the same time all of this is happening, the clerk will begin taking nominations for the mayor’s election in November.
Additionally, Dorn is potentially looking at appealing his plea, which could complicate matters even further, if the former mayor decides he wants to return to office. At this point Dorn is still awaiting an evaluation by an appellate lawyer.
According to political strategist Kerman Maddox of Dakota Communications, while the former Mayor may not be in office any longer, his influence will still be felt.
“Dorn did a lot in Inglewood. He also looked out for the African American business people, and he was a very, very strong and powerful personality. He could run you over. But there is a core group of people in Inglewood that like him, and respect him, and if I were a candidate, I would seek his endorsement,” said Maddox, who ran all of Dorn’s campaigns.
Maddox believes an endorsement from Dorn would make a candidate stand out in a field that is sure to be extremely crowded and populated with individuals, who have recognition and support in their own small enclaves but lack the total city-wide support and clout to command 50% plus one of ballots cast.
And separating themselves from the pack buy raising more money, garnering labor support or securing endorsements from other powerful figures like Congresswoman Maxine Waters and L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas is exactly what it will take to win the mayoral race to fulfill the unfinished term and to ultimately take control for the next four years.