LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — City Council members Tuesday defended Mayor Eric Garcetti’s use of an expletive during a rally celebrating the Los Angeles Kings’ Stanley Cup victory and urged the public to “move on” after the incident.
“I think he was genuine, and he was excited and he was emotional,” City Council President Herb Wesson said after this morning’s Council meeting. “It’s time for us to move on.”
Garcetti, wearing a Kings jersey, used the word while he stood at the microphone on the Staples Center ice Monday and told the crowd there are a few rules in politics.
“They say never, ever be pictured with a drink in your hand and never swear, but this is a big (expletive) day,” Garcetti said, drawing laughs and applause from the Kings players and mostly cheers from the crowd.
Fox Sports West commentator Patrick O’Neal apologized to viewers of the rally, which was televised live, after the network failed to censor the mayor’s comment.
KNX 1070’s Jon Baird reports that while speaking Tuesday at a luncheon for the Crenshaw Chamber of Commerce at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza, Garcetti said he was caught up in the celebratory moment when he unleashed the expletive.
“I got enthusiastic; I think I was just being myself for a moment there,” Garcetti said. “When you surround yourself with hockey players for an entire five blocks, you always gotta be careful what comes out of your mouth.”
Garcetti used an appearance Monday night on the ABC late-night talk show “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” to backtrack from the comment and reminded younger viewers to “not say what your mayor said today.”
But after Tuesday’s meeting, Councilman Joe Buscaino appeared to align himself with those at the rally who stood and applauded after the comment.
“It was an exciting moment, and I can’t believe just one word has sparked so much interest and debate within our city,” Buscaino said, adding that he tells his kids not to repeat bad words.
Mayor Garcetti continued to respond to critics at a Crenshaw Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Tuesday afternoon.
“You know, I think we over-analyze so much, we micro-analyze everything, we don’t let people be people,” Garcetti said. “I was just being a person yesterday.”
Meanwhile, USC professor Tom Hollihan, a veteran analyst of political speeches, suggests the expletive was inappropriate.
“It’s not going to be a career killer, it’s not going to be something of that magnitude,” Hollihan said. “But, I don’t think it’s helpful to establishing his image as someone who is kind of a moral leader for the city of LA.”
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