On Monday, Democrat Nury Martinez resigned as president of the Los Angeles City Council one day after the release of a leaked audio recording in which she made racist comments.
Martinez and Councilman Kevin de León, both Democrats, faced widespread protests and calls for their resignation after the recording showed them making racist comments about Councilmember Mike Bonin, a gay white man, and his adopted black son. Los Angeles County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera also took part in the conversation which was focused on redistricting the city.
While discussing Bonin, Martinez called his son “Parece changuito,” or “like a monkey.” She later said Bonin is a “little b****” and said he is raising his child like a “little white kid.”
Martinez also made racist comments when discussing Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón, saying, “F*** that guy… He’s with the blacks.”
On Sunday, Bonin issued a statement calling for the City Council to remove Martinez as president.
“We are appalled, angry and absolutely disgusted that Nury Martinez attacked our son with horrific racist slurs, and talked about her desire to physically harm him,” Bonin wrote in the statement. “It’s vile, abhorrent, and utterly disgraceful.”
Our family statement about today's ugly and hateful news. pic.twitter.com/0fPPXwsS5B
— Mike Bonin (@mikebonin) October 9, 2022
Martinez has since announced her resignation as president of the Los Angeles City Council.
“I take responsibility for what I said and there are no excuses for those comments. I’m so sorry,” Martinez said in a statement. “I sincerely apologize to the people I hurt with my words: to my colleagues, their families, especially to Mike, Sean, and your son. As a mother, I know better and I am sorry. I am truly ashamed. I know this is the result of my own actions. I’m sorry to your entire family for putting you through this.”
“As someone who believes deeply in the empowerment of communities of color, I recognize my comments undercut that goal. Going forward, reconciliation will be my priority. I have already reached out to many of my Black colleagues and other Black leaders to express my regret in order for us to heal,” she continued. “I ask for forgiveness from my colleagues and from the residents of this city that I love so much. In the end, it is not my apologies that matter most; it will be the actions I take from this day forward. I hope that you will give me the opportunity to make amends.”
“Therefore, effective immediately I am resigning as President of the Los Angeles City Council,” she added.
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