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Former candidate Pleitez endorses Garcetti for LA mayor

Former L.A. mayor candidate Emanuel Pleitez endorsed Councilman Eric Garcetti today in front of a group of Garcetti's campaign volunteers.
Former L.A. mayor candidate Emanuel Pleitez endorsed Councilman Eric Garcetti today in front of a group of Garcetti's campaign volunteers.
Hayley Fox

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013Update 3:40 p.m.: As many expected, Pleitez has endorsed councilman Eric Garcetti in his run for Los Angeles mayor.

The former candidate said Garcetti wants to "bring opportunity to every corner of the city."

Pleitez also praised the councilman for being "ready to tackle the biggest issues no matter how tough they are," and added that Garcetti also takes care of the basics, including good jobs and strong communities.

Garcetti described Pleitez as a "passionate campaigner" whose campaign he admired, and said the former mayor candidate was a "tremendous advocate for the people of Los Angeles."

"I think there's a real spark in this guy and his team," said Garcetti, complimenting Pleitez on his campaign's use of social media and ability to reach out to a wide range of voters.

"We're going to knock on doors," said the councilman. "We're not going to depend on the DWP unit to buy this race."

According to a press release from Garcetti's camp, Pleitez's campaign's focus on job creation and its strong grassroots organization — especially among young and Latino voters — will bring energy and experience to his campaign.

Pleitez placed a distant fifth in the March primary elections, though he came in third among Latino voters, according to polling done by Loyola Marymount University

As far as garnering the support of other former mayor candidates go, Garcetti said: "I've sat down with Kevin James and been in conversation with Ms. Perry and obviously I'd be honored to earn their support, but there's no decisions that either have made."

12:00 p.m.: Former L.A. mayoral candidate Emanuel Pleitez and current mayoral hopeful Eric Garcetti will meet with reporters Saturday afternoon to make an undisclosed statement, according to spokespeople for both campaigns. 

The two plan to meet at the Doll Factory, home of the L.A. Derby Dolls, near downtown L.A at 3:30 p.m. 

Speculation is that Pleitez may endorse Garcetti in his May runoff against former controller Wendy Greuel for mayor. 

"Unless they are going to strap on skates," media critic and L.A. Observed blogger Kevin Roderick writes, "I'm assuming this is where Pleitez announces he is endorsing Garcetti in the runoff for mayor."

Pleitez, who came in a distant fifth in the municipal primaries with 4 percent of the vote, ran on a campaign of bringing more transparency and a entrepreneurial ethic to City Hall.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly introduced Garcetti as the "former" councilman. Garcetti still represents Los Angeles Council District 13.