Today, eight city council members were arrested in Bell, California for what Los Angeles County District Attorney labeled “corruption on steroids.” Thus far, every major news outlet that has reported on the story has omitted the fact that all eight individuals arrested are Democrats.
These glaring omissions come only weeks after NewsBusters reported that of the 351 stories on the then-brewing controversy, 350 had omitted party affiliations, and one had mentioned they were Democrats only in apologizing for not doing so sooner.
Here’s the previous story about the salaries.
Hundreds of residents of one of the poorest municipalities in Los Angeles County shouted in protest last night as tensions rose over a report that the city’s manager earns an annual salary of almost $800,000.
An overflow crowd packed a City Council meeting in Bell, a mostly Hispanic city of 38,000 about 10 miles (16 kilometers) southeast of Los Angeles, to call for the resignation of Mayor Oscar Hernandez and other city officials. Residents left standing outside the chamber banged on the doors and shouted “fuera,” or “get out” in Spanish.
It was the first council meeting since the Los Angeles Times reported July 15 that Chief Administrative Officer Robert Rizzo earns $787,637 — with annual 12 percent raises — and that Bell pays its police chief $457,000, more than Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck makes in a city of 3.8 million people. Bell council members earn almost $100,000 for part-time work.
City Attorney Edward Lee said the council members couldn’t discuss salaries in public without advance notice. The council then adjourned for a private session. About an hour later, the council members returned, and Hernandez read a statement saying the city would prepare a report on the salaries and seek public comment at the next council meeting, scheduled for Aug. 16.
Residents shouted in protest. Lee said he would have the room cleared if people continued to speak out of line. Police Chief Randy Adams said the fire department wanted to end the meeting because the crowd outside was blocking the door.
Here’s something I found on my own while searching for his party affiliation.
Authorities discovered a methamphetamine lab at a Bell home owned by the city’s mayor early today and arrested two men, officials said.
Narcotics investigators raided a home in the 3800 block of Bell Avenue about 1:30 a.m. and found a “super lab,” capable of producing 20 pounds of methamphetamine at one time, said Deputy Guillermina Saldana of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. The investigators were part of a multi-agency state task force.
Saldana said two men were taken into custody, and two young children, ages 2 and 3, were placed in protective care. The suspects’ identities were not immediately available.
The home, one of three units on the lot, is owned by Bell Mayor Oscar Hernandez, who said in a phone interview that it was one of several properties he owns and that he rented it out to a young couple in their 20s. He said the husband was one of the men arrested. Hernandez said that although his son and daughter live in one of the units, his family knew nothing about the lab and had nothing to do with it.
“Nobody smelled nothing. I never got any complaints, and it’s a small community and the houses are close to each other,” said Hernandez, who runs a corner grocery store down the street and has been the city’s mayor since March.
I guess it goes without saying that he’s a Democrat. Not that any news stories will mention that he is a Democrat. But he is a Democrat.