Several Los Angeles city Democrats have come under fire after leaked audio emerged online that exposes the officials’ racist remarks.
Multiple leaked audio clips have gone viral after they were posted by an anonymous Reddit account.
The recordings appear to expose the true feelings about black Americans of three Los Angeles City Council members and a top county labor official.
The conversation, recorded last October, includes Council President Nury Martinez with fellow Councilmembers Gil Cedillo and Kevin de León and Los Angeles County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera, all of whom are Democrats.
The meeting was largely focused on redistricting the city, which happens once a decade.
During the conversations, the individuals could be heard using divisive and racist language while discussing black people and interracial families.
In one of the discussions, Martinez remarked about Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascón after his name was mentioned.
“F*** that guy,” Martinez said. “He’s with the blacks.”
Another part of the audio clip, which can be heard across social media platforms and in a report by The Los Angeles Times, exposes comments made by Martinez about Councilmember Mike Bonin.
Bonin is a white man who has an adopted black son.
While discussing Bonin, Martinez calls his son “Parece changuito,” or “He’s like a monkey.”
Democrat Martinez later referred to Bonin as a “little bitch” and said he is raising his child like a “little white kid.”
The Los Angeles Times reports Councilmember de León compares Bonin’s handling of his child to Martinez carrying her Louis Vuitton handbag.
He would later refer to Bonin as the council’s “fourth black member.”
“Mike Bonin won’t f***ing ever say a peep about Latinos,” de León said.
“He’ll never say a f***ing word about us.”
After the leaked audio exposed the racist agenda of the Democrat-run city council, Martinez released an apology statement, KTLA reports.
“In a moment of intense frustration and anger, I let the situation get the best of me, and I hold myself accountable for these comments,” Martinez said.
“For that, I am sorry.
“The context of this conversation was concern over the redistricting process and concern about the potential negative impact it might have on communities of color,” she claimed.
“My work speaks for itself.
“I’ve worked hard to lead this city through its most difficult time.”
De León also released a statement following the report, according to KTLA.
“There were comments made in the context of this meeting that are wholly inappropriate; and I regret appearing to condone and even contribute to certain insensitive comments made about a colleague and his family in private,” de León said.
“I’ve reached out to that colleague personally.
“On that day, I fell short of the expectations we set for our leaders — and I will hold myself to a higher standard.”
Cedillo told The Los Angeles Times that he does not “have a recollection of this conversation.”
A lawyer representing the L.A. County Federation of Labor sent a letter to The Los Angeles Times condemning the publication for highlighting the transcripts while accusing it of “condoning illegal conduct.”
Jeffrey Glasser, general counsel of The Los Angeles Times, defended the newspaper’s right to publish the material in a response letter to the lawyer.
“It is a fundamental principle in the United States that we do not prohibit or punish the receipt and publication of newsworthy information,” Glasser said.
Councilmember Bonin released a statement Sunday afternoon, saying he and his husband were “appalled, angry and absolutely disgusted” about the comments made about his son, according to KTLA.
“We love our son, a beautiful, joyful child, and our family is hurting today,” Bonin’s statement reads.
“No child should ever be subjected to such racist, mean and dehumanizing comments, especially from a public official.”
“It hurts that one of our son’s earliest encounters with overt racism comes from some of the most powerful public officials in Los Angeles,” he added.
Bonin called on Martinez, de León, and Cedillo to resign from the City Council.