In 2019 rich liberals, most of whom do not live in Southern California, including George Soros (New York), Patty Quillin & husband Reed Hastings (San Francisco), Elizabeth Simons (San Francisco), M. Quinn Delaney (Oakland), Cari Tuna (San Francisco), Susan Pritzker (Oakland), Kaitlyn Krieger ( San Francisco), Nicole Shanahan (San Francisco), Dorianna Blitt (New York), Anne Devereux (New York), and Anne Rosenbaum Irwin (San Francisco), gave $12.4 million to George Gascón’s campaign for Los Angeles District Attorney. Immediately after taking office, Gascón announced that he would not be prosecuting most property and drug criminals and that most arrestees would be released without bail. He also pledged to seek the shortest sentences possible for criminals convicted in Los Angeles County, including murderers, rapists and other violent offenders. While progressive state sentencing reforms (read reductions) along with Governor Newsom’s pandemic emergency orders for inmate releases and zero bail had been fueling crime increases before Gascón was elected, his new policies exacerbated this trend. The Los Angeles County Sheriff reports that homicides increased by 94% and auto thefts by 59% over the past two years. News footage of the daily “smash and grab” robberies across LA and the recent Beverly Hills home invasion and murder of liberal philanthropist Jaqueline Avant and the brutal killing of UCLA student Brianna Kupfer in exclusive Hancock Park, both by habitual felons, was a reality check for LA area liberals.
Jason McGahan of Los Angeles Magazine reports that in recent months wealthy Southern California liberals have opened up their pocketbooks to the recall Gascón campaign. This list of heavyweights is impressive, including Orion Pictures co-founder Mike Medevoy, supermarket magnet and Clinton advisor Ron Burkle, real estate billionaires Marc Nathanson and Jordan Kaplan, Malibu developer Richard Weintraub, George Clooney’s producing partner Grant Heslov, 20th Century Fox producer Johathan Sheinberg, and Lauren King, widow of King World Productions (Oprah Winfrey, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy.) Other celebrities who have joined the recall include boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard, news host Carley Steele and actress Rosanna Arquette.
Early celebrity Gascón supporters including Susan Sarandon, Kim Kardashian and former Disney chief Michael Eisner have yet to disclose their positions on the recall.
It has been easy for dotcom liberals and Hollywood celebrities to endorse and fund virtuous-sounding sentencing reforms and compassionate progressive district attorneys because, for several decades, they have been living in a protected world unaffected by street crime and violence. Ignorance also plays a role. But the current California crime wave has not been limited to poor and middle class neighborhoods. People are being shot, stabbed and robbed on Sunset, Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevards in the neighborhoods where celebrities shop and go to dinner, and in Beverly Hills, Pacific Palisades, Hancock Park and the Encino Hills where they live. As the old saying goes; a conservative is a liberal who’s been mugged.