Political Landscape: Foley to run for Costa Mesa mayor in 2018

Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley is planning to run for the city’s new at-large mayoral seat in 2018.

Foley confirmed to the Daily Pilot this week her intention to run. She said she has been planning it for some time and hosted a campaign fundraising event at a Santa Ana law firm in April.

Foley, an attorney who lives in Costa Mesa’s Mesa del Mar neighborhood, was first elected to the City Council in 2004. She won reelection in 2008 and left in 2010 after winning a seat on the Newport-Mesa Unified School District board.

In 2014, she returned to the council for a four-year term. Last year, Foley’s council colleagues appointed her mayor, a largely ceremonial position.

Under new city rules taking effect in 2018, mayors will be elected by voters throughout the city. The council will be expanded to seven members from five, and council members other than the mayor will be elected by districts.

In the mayor’s race, Foley could face Gary Monahan, a former mayor and longtime councilman who recently expressed interest in returning to City Hall.

Candidates will not be able to pull papers to officially run until next year, but they can file other paperwork to begin campaign fundraising now.

Rohrabacher says he’s not paid by Russia

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa) laughed when a reporter from The Hill newspaper asked Friday whether he is getting paid by Russia, according to a report by the Los Angeles Times.

“Am I getting money from Russia? No,” Rohrabacher said.

The question stemmed from a Washington Post story this week that disclosed an audio recording from last year in which House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) said he thought Rohrabacher and then-presidential candidate Donald Trump were being paid by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

A transcript of the tape notes McCarthy and others in the room were laughing, and McCarthy’s staff has said the comment was meant as a joke.

“That was a joke that didn’t make it,” Rohrabacher told The Hill, adding that he and McCarthy are friends.