Mike Bonin, the 11th District Los Angeles City councilmember easily won a second term in the March 5 election, garnering 70 percent of the vote – more than any other candidate citywide.
As an openly gay councilmember, just like his predecessor, the late Bill Rosendahl, Bonin has always championed LGBTQ causes.
Last April, Bonin wrote a resolution that was unanimously approved by the City Council, to refrain from conducting business with the states of Missouri and North Carolina over laws that would create a “climate of intolerance and a climate of violence” towards LGBTQ people.
At the time, North Carolina passed a law limiting legal protections for LGBT people at hotels, shops and restaurants and first introduced the transgender bathroom law. In Mississippi, Gov. Phil Bryant signed a law allowing government employees to refuse to perform marriage ceremonies and deny marriage licenses to same sex couples, as well as allowing businesses and faith-based groups to deny housing, jobs and adoption and foster-care services to people based on their sexual orientation.
Bonin said at the time of the resolution, “I can guarantee you in these two states that hate crimes are going to increase and people are going to be beaten. And I can guarantee in these two states that young kids struggling with their identity are going to be bullied and some of them will ponder suicide. That’s not what Los Angeles stands for.”
Following his victory on March 5, Bonin posted the following letter to his constituents:
THANK YOU — for your support, for your trust, and for your vote.
The final results are in. I am humbled and grateful to have won 70 percent of the vote. With your help, our campaign earned 19,099 votes – more votes than any other council candidate in the City of LA.
Public service is an immense privilege, and representing our neighborhoods on the Los Angeles City Council is a tremendous honor. The grassroots power of our neighborhoods fueled our campaign, and it will keep me focused on improving city services, housing the homeless, combating traffic, protecting the environment, enhancing public safety – and fixing our broken development process.
I am very proud of our campaign and our remarkable team. We were positive, optimistic, and substantive. We talked about a record of accomplishment, and we laid out a vision for the future. Kudos and much love to my team, which wove together a movement that included community leaders, neighborhood activists, friends, and a new generation of community organizers. Very special thanks to my friends, family, and my wonderful husband, Sean Arian.
I also want to acknowledge my challengers, Robin Rudisill and Mark Ryavec. While we disagreed on many things, at a time of widespread voter apathy, I salute and applaud anyone who is willing to step into the arena, stand before the voters, and engage in the public process.
Mostly importantly, I want to thank YOU. If you donated, if you called or walked, if you posted a lawn sign, if you offered an idea or a constructive criticism, if you cheered at a public event or house party, or if you voted, this victory belongs to you. Please stick with me in the weeks, months and years to come. Working together, I know that we will continue to move Los Angeles forward, do good, and get things done.