Newsom taps Villaraigosa for senior role

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Then-Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, right, reacts to former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, center, during a news conference on June 19, 2018 in downtown Los Angeles. | Richard Vogel/AP Photo

California Gov. Gavin Newsom today will name one-time rival and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa as infrastructure czar and an adviser, two people briefed on the choice told POLITICO.

The announcement will be made at a press conference on water supply policy in Contra Costa County, California. In the press release announcing the event, Newsom’s office noted that he would be announcing “new leadership for California’s infrastructure effort.”

Villaraigosa served as the mayor of Los Angeles from 2005 to 2013. He ran against Newsom for governor in 2018 in what became an at-times bitter race. But he finished a distant third — bowing out while calling for Democratic unity.

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