The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors will ask voters in November to approve a change in the county’s charter that would allow the board to remove the county sheriff.
The board has had a famously testy relationship with incumbent Sheriff Alex Villanueva, who has criticized the board for a variety of policies, including cuts to police funding, enforcing vaccine mandates, and failing to stop homelessness.
The Los Angeles Times reported Thursday:
Under a proposed change to the county’s charter, which would need approval of voters in November’s general election, the board would assume the authority to force out a sitting sheriff if four of the five supervisors agree the sheriff is unfit for office.
The extraordinary move would fundamentally reshuffle the balance of power in the county and highlights how bitter and dysfunctional the relationship between Sheriff Alex Villanueva and county leaders has become.
A Sheriff’s Department spokesperson called the idea a “politically motivated stunt” designed to hurt the sheriff’s chances of winning reelection.
Villanueva, though a Democrat, is seen as the sole conservative, law-and-order-minded public official in Los Angeles. He gained headlines last year by spearheading an effort to remove homeless encampments from Venice Beach, and has also criticized the Black Lives Matter movement. He is reviled by the local Democratic establishment and the media.
The change to the county charter would allow the Board of Supervisors to nullify Villanueva’s victory if he wins in the fall.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.