Two days away from election day, Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos has published a full-page digital ad urging Los Angeles residents to vote for billionaire developer Rick Caruso for mayor.
While Sarandos has been one of the nation’s biggest donors for Democrats and a major figure in California politics, the head of Hollywood’s biggest streaming service echoed Caruso’s outsider image, framing his support of the mayoral candidate as an act of rebellion against the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, which has endorsed Congresswoman Karen Bass in the race.
“The entire Machine of the Democratic Party had aligned for a candidate that is part of the very system that is failing this city. They are wrong,” Sarandos wrote in the letter published in The Hollywood Reporter. “I am a lifetime Democrat. Rick is the Democrat I’ve been waiting for, one with a plan and a track record of accomplishing impossible tasks in California and Los Angeles.”
I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a full digital/mobile page takeover on The Hollywood Reporter (maybe they’ve done it before and I’ve just missed it). But here’s Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos asking people of LA to vote Rick Caruso for Mayor of Los Angeles on Nov. 8th. pic.twitter.com/GDliFru1L3
— julia alexander (@loudmouthjulia) November 6, 2022
As TheWrap reported this past summer, Sarandos has been one of several Hollywood moguls throwing millions behind Caruso, who has already spent $100 million of his own money on his campaign. UTA partner Jay Sures and actress Gwyneth Paltrow have also thrown their support behind the candidate, going against a list of Bass supporters that includes Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Shonda Rhimes and JJ Abrams.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Caruso’s spending has gotten him to within striking distance of Bass in the polls after the congresswoman took a seven-point lead in the June primary. A UC Berkeley poll published Friday showed that Bass’ lead has narrowed to four points, 45% to 41%, putting it within the poll’s margin of error.
While Bass has been relying on Los Angeles’ staunchly liberal tilt to carry her to City Hall, Caruso has used his millions to present himself to voters as a political outsider who can use his business acumen to tackle the city’s homelessness crisis and cut through a local political structure wrought with scandal, a message that Sarandos also espoused in his letter.
“If you are tired of the inhumane way the homeless population lives in this city, the filth that goes uncleaned, the corruption in city hall, shrinking law enforcement and rising crime and now, the threat of even higher taxes, vote for Rick Caruso,” he wrote.