Democrat Bass Takes Charge as LA Mayor Amid Homeless Crisis

Karen Ruth Bass took a ceremonial oath of office as mayor of Los Angeles and will become the first woman and second Black person to hold the job.

Karen Ruth Bass, a former physician assistant who shattered glass ceilings with her rise to a leadership post in the California legislature and later a prominent spot in Congress, took a ceremonial oath of office Sunday as mayor of Los Angeles.

A progressive Democrat, Bass becomes the first woman and second Black person to hold the city’s top job and will formally assume her duties Monday amid multiple crises in the nation’s second most populous city.

She was sworn in ceremonially by Vice President Kamala Harris, a longtime friend and former California attorney general. The formal oath was administered privately by the city clerk.

Bass will be tasked with easing rising crime rates, restoring trust in a City Hall shaken by racism and corruption scandals and addressing the issue of over 40,000 people living in trash-strewn encampments or rusty RVs that have spread into virtually every neighborhood.

Striking a tone of unity, Bass said the many, disparate arms of government must come together to confront homelessness.

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