As the clock ticks down to Election Day, Kamala Harris, the Democratic candidate for California Attorney General, is aiming hard at her opponent Steve Cooley.
Harris has been gaining on Republican Steve Cooley, and has found solid support in Hollywood, despite being from up north.
Cooley’s ill-fated extradition attempt of Roman Polanski has not helped him with the entertainment industry crowd. Nor have recent reports that his L.A. office may have delayed prosecution of the corrupt city manager in Bell, California.
I asked Harris how she felt about the Polanski case.
“I think it’s all political maneuvering, just what he’s done with Bell. He chooses who what and when to go after,” she said.
The investigative site California Watch reported last week that Cooley's office was informed last year of voter fraud, bribery and corruption allegations in Bell, ignored the allegations, and then fast-tracked an inquiry beginning in March with an eye to the November election.
Similar political suspicions surround Cooley’s 30-years-late extradition campaign against Polanski.
Cooley’s campaign has denied political motivation in either case.
Meanwhile, Harris – the daughter of a physician-researcher mother and a Stanford economics-professor father – says as attorney general she would focus on crime prevention, such as with a training and support program for 18-24 year old first time drug offenders.
“The attorney general of California needs to take on a broken system and build leadership,” she said.
Her other priority is pursuing mortgage fraud and illegal foreclosures. “One of the things I plan to do is create a strike force and an oversight component, a balance between civil and criminal nature of what the Attorney General does,” she said.
FYI, Harris still trails Cooley in the polls, but the L.A. district attorney should have walked away with this election.
Instead, Harris is finding herself surrounded by new friends in the entertainment industry.
Tina Daunt in the L.A. Weekly describes the 46-year-old Harris thusly:
“Poised, exotically beautiful and impeccably liberal, Harris was a hit. She was honored at a luncheon hosted by former studio head Sherry Lansing, whose approval guarantees that fundraising office-seekers get treated seriously by Hollywood's big money. "She's a dedicated public servant," Lansing says, "someone who truly believes in justice. She's a moral and decent person, and on top of it all, she's beautiful."”
Ron and Kelly Meyer hosted a fundraiser for her, and on Oct 27 another was sponsored by Bob Iger, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Michael Lynton and the Meyers (again).