UPDATE: Michael Rosenberg disputes statements made in a KTTV report and on Deputy District Attorney David Berger’s personal blog, saying he is not a felon and did not contribute to the Weiss campaign. He has discussed the matter with KTTV and Berger but they have stood be their reports which were quoted here.
If ever there was a case to be made for clean money public financing of political races, Jack Weiss’ campaign to be LA’s top law enforcement officer is it.
Weiss, the two-term City Councilman widelydespised in his district for pandering to special interests and ignoring his constituents, has based his entire campaign for City Attorney on who his challenger, Carmen “Nuch” Trutanich, represented as a private lawyer.
The trouble with that is that Trutanich was paid to work, not paid to play, and attempts at smearing his opponent have backfired since it’s Weiss who is tainted by dirty political money.
Deputy District Attorney and blogger David Berger and KTTV’s John Schwada broke the latest story last night with his report on a Weiss fund-raiser held May 3 at the Hancock Park home of convicted felon Michael Rosenberg
Rosenberg was convicted of a “massive health industry fraud involving his operation of elder care and
drug treatment facilities known as Walnut Convalescent Hospital,
Convalescent Care Center, Hope House (also known as Merit Manor and
Citi Lodge,” according to Berger who links to the court documents.
Weiss, his face crunched in worry, denied knowing anything about the connection in his on-camera interview with Schwada although his campaign admitted they knew about the problem for most of a week.
“Weiss, a former prosecutor must have known of Rosenberg’s criminal
past, but he must also have assumed that so close to the election,
nobody would find out until it was too late.Weiss was wrong. Very wrong,” wrote Berger, who lost in the primary race for City Attorney and now backs Trutanich.
“Jack Weiss has built his campaign on attacking Carmen Trutanich for
being an attorney who defends criminals. Yet Weiss has no problem
breaking the law himself to raise money, neither does he have a problem
taking money from a convicted criminal. In return for what, you may
This is the third time that Weiss’ campaign has run into trouble.
Last June, another convicted felon — lobbyist Steve Sugerman who confessed to overbilling in the DWP/Fleishman-Hillard case — held a fund-raiser in Santa Monica for Weiss who had no qualms about getting campaign help from a player getting rich on his City Hall connections.
Despite his conviction, Sugerman is representing the Autry Museum into its fight with community activists who want to see the historic Southwest Museum presderved and Playa Vista in its fight with environmental activists who want to see the Ballona Wetlands preserved.
And just last week, Community College trustee Kelly Candaele was forced to resign as a member of the board of the LA City Employees ‘Retirement Fire and Police Pension fund after serving as a host of a Weiss fund-raiser.
City commissioners are barred from contributing to city political campaigns but the problems over this connection go much deeper.
As the New York pension fund scandal spreads to LA, the city employee pension funds have caught the attention of investigators.
Two Fire and Police Pension Fund board members, Sean Harrigan and Elliot Broidy, were forced to resign after the Securities and Exchange Commission sought details of their fiinancial dealiing.
And the April 27 Beverly Hills fund-raiser for Weiss was co-hosted by Richard Ziman and his wife and and Daniel Weinstein and his wife.
Weinstein heads Wetherly Capital which is a potential target of the nationwide pension fund scandal investigation and Ziman is an unpaid adviser to Wetherly.
It’s a small world the world of LA political influence peddling and Jack Weiss is the man inside that world.