Robert Oliver, John Duran concede races for WeHo City Council

Former Councilmember John Duran and Public Safety Commissioner Robert Oliver have both ended their campaigns for West Hollywood City Council this week.

The two looked well positioned to take one of the three open council seats as the first vote counts were released last Tuesday, but since then they’ve fallen into fourth and fifth place as Zekiah Wright and Chelsea Byers have risen in the rankings.

Oliver was the most well-funded candidate in the race, and one of three candidates supported and heavily promoted by the UNITE HERE Local 11 labor union. A seminal figure on WeHo City Council for many years, Duran lost his a bid for re-election in 2020.

As of Wednesday, Oliver had received 3,754 votes or 10.2 percent of the total cast, while Duran received 3,689 or 10.3 percent.

Oliver issued the following statement on his campaign’s social media accounts:

“I am so proud of the hard work we poured into this people-powered campaign. I’d like to thank every single person who contributed their time, money, and passion into our campaign. We reached every single voter in this city—countless doors knocked, calls, texts, emails. Rain or shine. Every. Single. Day. Our message has always been about people who live, work, and visit our city. The people.

I believe the future of our city is bright, and tonight I’m excited to celebrate the next chapter in our West Hollywood story.

I also want to thank everyone who voted today in West Hollywood—whether for me or another candidate, as well as our friends and family around the state and country. Thank you for exercising your fundamental right to choose your government. At this moment in our history, it matters.

With utmost gratitude,
Robert

Duran’s statement is below:

“The Day Before Thanksgiving Day…..

Hi all. I have resurfaced. I needed a Saturnical moment of reflection.

I did not get re elected to Weho Council again. Votes are still being counted but not gonna happen. I do want to congratulate my former colleagues Lauren Meister and John Heilman on getting back on council. (Although John Heilman is just holding on by a mere 20 votes. It has to hold! For the sake of the City!). And I want to congratulate newcomer Chelsea Byers.

Here’s the deal. Every time there has been a major shift in my life – I am always fearful of the unknown. But I have learned to walk forward with Faith and fear – and it always turns out that there are new adventures waiting ahead. Who knows what? Who knows where? Who knows with whom?

All I know is that I have 6 decades of cherished family and friends which makes me the RICHEST man in the world by far. God will nudge me in the right direction with whatever is next. Suit Up. Show Up. Into Action.

Will save my gratitude list for tomorrow’s holiday. But for now – THANK YOU to everyone who supported my campaign for WeHo council in 2022.

COVID is still here. Get your shots. Democracy is still alive. Give thanks. Love is still all around us. Be Joyful.

Safe travels today everyone. Thanksgiving Weekend is upon us….”

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About Brandon Garcia
Brandon Garcia is editor of WEHOville. He oversees the website's editorial direction and creates original content such as news reports, photo and video features, digital art work and advertisements. A native of the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, he now lives in WeHo and is a proud member of the LGBTQIA+ community. @brandoninthebubble on Instagram

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Duplicitous Types
Duplicitous Types
4 days ago

Weho could use fewer duplicitous types and many more with integrity.

hifi5000
hifi5000
4 days ago

John Duran may be out of the running for council,but this doesn’t mean he is out of the picture.He has a lot of city experience,so I feel he could be a good mentor to one of the new councilpersons.

The position should not be city paid,but if Duran feels strongly about the city as he has stated,he could offer his mentor-ship to help the city right itself.

As for his failures of the past,he should stay in the background and not speak publicly.I know that will be hard to do considering Duran’s personality,but I think he could do it.

New Yorker
New Yorker
4 days ago

Duran lost any-and-all credibility when he publicly commented about the personal sex lives of his co-council members years ago. It was beyond offensive and completely-and-totally inappropriate, especially for an attorney. And that doesn’t even count him giving a $150,000 job…to a person he was dating. He should not serve in public office anywhere again. And good for Chelsea Byers. She is a hard worker and will bring much-needed fresh blood to the council.

Eric Becker
Eric Becker
5 days ago

I am disappointed that Zekiah Wright did not elevate into office as I reviewed her background long enough that she has the stability, maturity and spiritual strength that is more than being in a “squad of who likes who” and she is definitely not a grandstander. Steve Martin was tossed to the wayside as he has a very mature yet approachable consciousness and I like that he is mature enough to not see Weho as a grandstanding or ladder to the big time elsewhere. I have tried to believe Weho committees and boards will be “for everyone with experience in… Read more »

Last edited 5 days ago by Eric Becker
Eastside Straight Girl
Eastside Straight Girl
5 days ago

Both worked hard in their campaigns, both should be congratulated for putting themselves out there to do what most of us DON’T have the guts to do….run for an unpaid City Council seat.
Now we have the “SEB” replacing the “SHE!”

Left Field
Left Field
5 days ago

Unpaid? City Council just voted themselves a raise in September.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
6 days ago

I read John Duran’s eloquent social media post earlier today and was reminded of what a huge mind and intellect John has always brought to policy, activism, and true concern for West Hollywood and civil rights. His loss is our loss, and I hope John continues to find a way to express his magnificent voice in some way. John is passionate, authentic and full of fury and true devotion in a way that few can match.

Cue the hate and intolerance of small minds….I’m ready for it.

Eastside Straight Girl
Eastside Straight Girl
5 days ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

Well said Alan!

Steve Too
Steve Too
5 days ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

It’s not intolerant to be against someone because they cost the city a huge wad of money because of their actions.

TomSmart
TomSmart
5 days ago
Reply to  Steve Too

Right!

David
David
5 days ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

He didn’t get re-elected because people with minds didn’t like the idea of the city (via it’s insurance) having to pay for his inability to differentiate collogues from playtime. This is a fundamental character flaw.

Last edited 5 days ago by David
Randy
Randy
6 days ago

I think the math here is a little wrong. Duran did receive more than 1.3% of the votes. Thanks.

R Rogers
5 days ago
Reply to  Randy

10.3%

I ♥️ WEHO
I ♥️ WEHO
6 days ago

One important lesson that I hope both Robert Oliver and Rick Carouso (in L.A.) learned …is that spending a ton of money doesn’t necesarrily mean that people will vote for you!

Wacky Weho
Wacky Weho
5 days ago
Reply to  I ♥️ WEHO

Especially if the money you spent wasn’t on a ballot harvesting machine that tips the scale

And so it goes....
And so it goes....
6 days ago

In regards to John Duran’s statement about John Heilman…his 20 votes have to hold… “for the sake of the city”. Pick what brand of duplicitous poison you like. John Heilman like Oz, manipulator behind the screen who postulated an idealistic City but unfortunately was constructed with built in fissures that have recently evidenced, most prominently through development and loss of unity and neighborhood integrity. His pal, the recently deceased Ed Levin, appears to have helped him facilitate over and ill conceived development for personal gains and not the noble benefit of the city by matching the foundational ideals. It needn’t… Read more »

Challenged
Challenged
6 days ago

Consistently shining the light on himself.
Not a good example of a person providing
selfless service in the public arena.

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