Kevin de León refuses to resign from Los Angeles City Council after racism scandal

Embattled L.A. City Councilman Kevin de León does not plan to resign from his position despite widespread calls to step down, he told two media outlets today, Oct. 19.

De León conducted interviews with Univision and CBS2, and said that he will not resign over his involvement in the City Hall racism scandal.

The October 2021 conversation between De León and fellow council members Nury Martinez and Gil Cedillo and Ron Herrera, president of the L.A. County Federation of Labor, included racist comments and discussions over favorable redistricting, and led to Martinez resigning her council presidency and later her council seat last week.

De León and Cedillo have been under mounting pressure to resign since the release of the tape Oct. 9.

“I will not resign because there’s a lot of work ahead,” de León said in Spanish to Univision. “There’s a lot of work that we have to face. The crisis that is happening in the district, the infections, the unemployment, the threat to eviction, the humanitarian crisis of the homeless.”

He added that he felt “very bad and embarrassed for the hurt, for the wounds that exist today in our communities.”

“I’m very sorry. I’m sorry and for that I ask for apologies from my people, to my community, for the pain that my hurtful words caused from that day a year ago.”

De León also gave an interview in English with KCAL9 and CBS2, saying, in part, “I failed in my leadership. I didn’t step up and intervene. I didn’t put a stop to it.”

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