As he spoke, protesters quietly started singing “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,” but with the verses, “You better watch out, you better not cry, Eric Garcetti is telling us lies, human rights violations happening now.”
The demonstration was organized by groups including the Los Angeles Community Action Network and the Los Angeles chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America, both of which regularly criticize Garcetti’s policies on homelessness and the LAPD.
It was not the first time Garcetti has been heckled offstage. In 2015, during the height of the Black Lives Matter movement, protesters forced the mayor to flee a town hall meeting.
As Breitbart News noted at the time (original links):
The organizers of the forum urged the protestors to have a “civil conversation.” Instead, they chanted “Black lives, they matter here!” and forced Garcetti to leave under police guard. NBC Los Angeles recounted: “Garcetti initially came to answer questions from citizens regarding economic opportunity and community safety before protestors began chanting. But the event quickly turned to chaos as Black Lives Matter protesters rushed the podium.”
The issues of homelessness and police brutality have haunted Garcetti as he has attempted to build a national profile, traveling across the country to fundraisers and key early primary states.
Garcetti, now serving a second term after being re-elected in a landslide, points to the 2024 Olympics and funding for the restoration of the Los Angeles River as signature achievements of his tenure as mayor.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.