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Why Eric Garcetti Thinks America Needs a Mayor in the White House

"It is America's cities that are here, ready to save Washington," says the Los Angeles mayor and potential 2020 candidate.

This is the second episode of Governing's new podcast, "In the Arena," where the president of our parent company e.Republic, Cathilea Robinett, interviews public officials about courage, compassion and creativity in public leadership. 

Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles, has been testing the waters for a potential presidential bid in 2020. Even if he doesn't run, he hopes other mayors will. Why? He believes mayors have what America wants.

Mayors are "practical, results-oriented, inclusive and decent," says Garcetti. "We have a lot of division, we have a lot of impracticality, we have a lack of experience in government."

Garcetti himself says he became a public servant on accident, but he has strong feelings about what it means.

"You never win by talking. I think public service is about listening. If you hear your city, you hear your country, you hear your world, it will speak to you."

On this episode of "In the Arena," he also talks about the difference between leaders who are "future phobic" and "future passive."

Listen to the full interview below. You can also subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts  or Stitcher, or bookmark the "In the Arena" page.


Mayor Garcetti's book recommendations:


Future Guests:

  • Themis Klarides, majority leader of Connecticut House (June 20)
  • Greg Fischer, mayor of Louisville, Ky. (June 27)
  • Acquanetta Warren, mayor of Fontana, Calif. (July 11)
  • Kristen Cox, executive director of Utah Office of Management and Budget (July 18)

Earlier Episodes of In The Arena:

CEO of e.Republic and host of "In the Arena"
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