UC Berkeley Law School Dean Erwin Chemerinsky emailed the Weekly today at 4:54 pm saying he will no longer be investing in Semanal Media Group, the company which now owns LA Weekly.
After we unveiled the fact LA Weekly is now owned by mostly Republican donors, many people online were questioning why the hell Chemerinsky would be willing to invest. He initially told the LA Times on November 30 that he planned on investing because he has "enormous admiration and respect" for Calle and he didn't know who the current investors were. On Dec. 5, Chemerinsky spoke with the Weekly and once again said he knows Calle because the latter edited his column in the OC Register. "I came to admire Brian and consider him a friend," he said at 11:41a.m.
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"[Calle] asked me to invest and I explained to him that I don't have much to invest," Chemerinsky added. "But I would make a small investment for him as a friend. When I did so, I knew nothing about any of the controversies that have developed. I have not yet contributed or signed anything."
With the firing (effectively busting the union representing LA Weekly's staff) and the conservative faces behind Semanal now in the spotlight, Chemerinsky's possible investment is being criticized for being at odds with his longtime left-wing views. When we sent him our "Most of the LA Weekly's New Owners Are Republican Donors" article as well as informed him of criticisms, he told the Weekly at 3:09 p.m. "I knew nothing about that when I spoke to Brian when I said I would invest a small amount of money...I will take this seriously into account before investing."
Then, at 4:54 pm Chemerinsky emailed us again, indicating he'd changed his mind. "I am not going to be investing," he said.
Stay tuned at OC Weekly for more on this developing story.