A Los Angeles youth soccer club held a meeting that turned out to be Rick Caruso promotion event. Parents were confused, and you might be, too. An honest mistake or a deceitful plan? Who knows? Tyler Pak and Matthew Tsai have the story.
On Monday, Los Angeles Unified Futbol Academy (LAUFA) parents attended what could be mistaken as a routine mandatory meeting. According to one parent present, Robert Hernandez, attendees were surprised when they were handed signs that read “Latinos for Rick Caruso” and LA mayoral candidate Rick Caruso appeared to speak.
Hernandez wrote that some of the parents felt as though the LAUFA and Caruso had deceived them with a covert campaign event. Here’s the first tweet in his Twitter thread from Monday:
Robert Hernandez: Wow. Y’all my kid’s soccer club called a meeting...it turns out we are being used for a Rick Caruso campaign event. None of the parents knew. Many took time off work for this. When you see these pics know that they was a setup under false pretense.
The tweet caught fire, receiving 1,500 likes and over 500 re-tweets.
Parents were also upset because as a nonprofit organization, the LAUFA is not allowed to endorse political candidates.
However, things were not as they seemed.
Rocky Delgadillo, the president of the LAUFA, issued the following statement today:
Rocky Delgadillo: We at the Los Angeles Unified Futbol Academy (LAUFA) take pride in the full development of all our youth soccer players and encourage community and civic engagement. This was an informational event. This was optional and we would do the same for any candidate. Unfortunately, there was a misunderstanding with the invite issued. We welcome civic engagement with all candidates.
In a final tweet about the situation, Hernandez clarified:
Robert Hernandez: A reporter reached out to the club and spoke with the president who said it was a misunderstanding. A staffer on the club sent out an email for an optional event. He says people misunderstood it as mandatory. This event was NOT organized by the Caruso campaign.
For Annenberg Media, I’m Tyler Pak and Matthew Tsai.