Former L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's Newest Gig Could Pose Conflict Of Interest

Another day, another job.

Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has new job to add to his other responsibilities – he is advisor to a global public relations firm.

Villaraigosa is also an adviser at the nutritional products company, Herbalife, he is a senior fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center, a think tank, and a visiting fellow at Harvard University this fall.

Ironically, Villaraigosa’s newest employer, counts as its client a company that is going after another of the former mayor’s employers, according to the Los Angeles Times.

His new employer, Edelman, was hired by Pershing Square Capital Management’s Bill Ackman, who accuses Herbalife of being a pyramid scheme where salespeople lose money.

Ackman is quoted in the Times as saying he was surprised to hear that Villaraigosa is working for Edelman while also working for Herbalife.

Both the former mayor and Edelman say there is no conflict of interest.

"There's absolutely no conflict," the newspaper quotes Villaraigosa as saying."This is something I discussed with both parties. Edelman is an organization with a global footprint, as is Herbalife. I'm not working in any way that would create a conflict."

An Edelman spokesman agreed.

"In his role as senior advisor to Edelman, Antonio Villaraigosa will serve as an independent consultant to the firm,” said Lisa Page, according to the Times. “We take conflicts of interest extremely seriously, and Antonio will not be involved in any business that would represent a conflict to our clients, given his professional activities outside of Edelman."

Of his jobs-juggling, Villaraigosa said “I’m an 18 hour-a-day guy,” according to Politico.

The Times said Herbalife declined comment.

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