By Angela Mcgregor
Mike Bonin may have been unable to attend the campaign last night at University Synagogue in Brentwood, but two Bonin campaign workers participated by standing outside the venue and passing out copies of a letter from Mike’s campaign manager, Billy Cline.
The letter stated that the event was promoted and planned “long before anyone checked with Mike” and maintained that two of the event’s organizers were “outspoken supporters of one of Mike’s challengers” who “refused to explore other options.” The letter also stated that both Mark Ryavec and Robin Rudisill “waffled” on participating in another debate which was organized for 27 February, and was referred to in the letter as the “real” debate.
According to some debate attendants, in addition to distributing the letters, the campaign workers also discouraged attendants from entering the venue. They were stopped by members of the University Synagogue.
Sarah Conner, president of the Pacific Palisades Residents’ Association (one of the event’s organizers), introduced the debate by stating that Bonin had been contacted in January, while the event was being organized, as to his availability. He stated, after several attempts, that he was “busy until after the campaign,” contrary to what was stated in the letter.
Note: Venice Update was told that Robin Rudisill had not agreed to the 27 February debate.
In other debate-related developments, Rudisill issued a press release at the event, titled “Why won’t Bonin debate anywhere but his home turf in Mar Vista?” In it, she stated that Bonin’s press releases stating she was considering withdrawing from the 27 February debate were “just nonsense.”
“I am hosting my daughter’s wedding reception at my home two days before the Mar Vista debate on February 27th and will have relatives staying with me, but I have not withdrawn,” she stated. Rudisill also questioned whether Bonin’s “conflict” with the 16 February debate was about the date, or the “Brentwood location, where residents are upset about the Archer School expansion and other Bonin-connected developments.”
Mark Ryavec, the third candidate for city council, CD11, has yet to respond to whether he has also reconsidered participating in the 27 February debate.