Los Angeles City Councilman Mike Bonin announced today that he will not run for a third term in the June primary, saying he will focus on his personal health instead.
“I’ve struggled with depression for years. It’s a constant companion, and often a heavy one. There are times when this job has made it easier, and times where it has made it more challenging. Instead of looking for one second period, it’s time for me to focus on health and wellness, ”Bonin wrote on Twitter.
Today I announced that I have decided not to seek re-election to the LA City Council.
This is a difficult, deeply personal decision, and I have been struggling with it for several days, but I am convinced that it is the right choice for the right reasons. (thread)
– Mike Bonin (@mikebonin) January 27, 2022
The District 11 councilor, who is one of the city council’s most progressive members, won his last election in 2017 with 71% of the vote. He had previously announced that he would seek re-election to the district, which includes Venice, the Pacific Palisades, Mar Vista and Westchester.
Bonin was the target of a recall effort in 2021. Los Angeles City Clerk Holly L. Wolcott announced last week that the effort could not receive enough signatures to qualify for the vote.
The recall campaign was launched by voters outraged by Bonin’s handling of the homelessness crisis. Bonin, who has spoken openly about his own time on the streets of LA, has advocated for a housing-first approach instead of enforcement to remove camps.
Bonin has consistently voted against his colleagues’ proposal to enforce the city’s anti-camping law, which came into force in September, banning campsites at various locations in the city once a proposal on the locations is approved by the city council.
“This position allows me to make positive, progressive changes. It’s a great privilege. But in the last few years, the job has forced me to focus much more of my time and energy on fighting the negative instead of “Create the positive. I have to reverse that dynamic,” Bonin tweeted.
“To those who are disappointed with my decision, I’m sorry. It’s very difficult to walk away from a third period and the work we’ve done together, but I have to listen to my heart. This is the best decision for me and my family. ”
Bonin added that he would continue to fight “for a better LA” and focus on homelessness, racial and economic justice and the climate crisis after leaving office in December.
Bonin said he will focus his remaining 10 months on the council, which “fights for low-wage workers, tenants, seniors, students, bus riders and outsiders – who are being demonized and bowed down by politicians, media figures and some in our neighborhoods.”
Along with Bonin’s progressive efforts related to the city’s homelessness crisis, he was an early leader of the city’s efforts to convert the Department of Water and Power to 100% renewable energy by 2035 and increase the city’s minimum wage to $ 15.
Bonin co-introduced a proposal from April 2017 that put the city on a path to ban oil and gas drilling, a first step in the process that resulted in the city council on Wednesday voting to officially begin the process of banning future oil and gas drilling. phasing out existing oil drilling sites.
Voters trying to remember Bonin cited camps along Venice’s seafront and other areas of the Westside. Bonin was praised by progressives for implementing a successful road to housing operation over the summer on the seafront, which brought 213 people indoors with a road to permanent housing instead of enforcement.
Some voters expressed frustration after tents returned to the boardwalk months after the operation.
Bonin also faced increased backlash from voters after introducing a proposal to get the city to explore the homes of the homeless in temporary cabins and secure campgrounds on beach parking lots, including one at Will Rogers State Beach.
Bonin later sent an email to voters in May in an attempt to dispel what he said were rumors that his proposal, which only asked for a report on feasibility, would actually create camps.
City News Service contributed to this report.