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A lawyer, lobbyist and onetime aide to former Los Angeles Mayor James Hahn is jumping into the race for a Watts-to-San Pedro seat on the City Council, reshuffling the campaign for the second time in a week.

Councilman Joe Buscaino, after nearly a decade in office, announced Monday he would not seek reelection in the port district and would instead run for mayor in June 2022. On Wednesday, attorney and nonprofit executive Tim McOsker launched his own campaign to replace Buscaino in the district, which takes in areas such as Wilmington, Harbor City and the Los Angeles harbor.

McOsker, 58, was a high-level aide to Hahn from 1997 to 2005, serving as chief of staff when Hahn was city attorney and later as mayor. More recently, he has worked as an attorney and registered city lobbyist, representing such clients as the hotel industry and the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the union that represents rank-and-file police officers.

How that private-sector work will play out in a political campaign is unclear. After the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last year, activists across the city pressed council members to defund the Los Angeles Police Department and shift the money to programs that help the city’s neediest, while also denouncing the police union for having too much political clout.

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