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Tito Ortiz is no longer the bad boy of the Huntington Beach, California, city council, stepping down from his position as Mayor Pro Tem on Tuesday night.
Elected by a record-setting margin in November, the former UFC light heavyweight champion and crossover star cited concerns about his family’s safety and media criticism as the reasons.
Reading a statement, an emotional Ortiz said he thought he was stepping into a bipartisan position but instead was met hostility and judgment on a weekly basis.
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“To put it simply, this job isn’t working for me,” he said, “I did as best as I possibly could do and I hope I didn’t let anybody down.”
Throughout his short tenure, Ortiz drew criticism for his stance on not wearing masks including at his swearing-in ceremony in addition to his views on the pandemic. In January, the mayor of Kalmick, CA, and a fellow city councilman put forth an unsuccessful proposal to remove Ortiz from office. He also was an ardent supporter and friend of controversial former U.S. President Donald Trump.
It was revealed the 46-year-old filed for unemployment in February despite a $1500/month stipend for his city council job. He had claimed he was done with the city in late-February even though he was still on the council. He was also eligible for group medical insurance.
Ortiz has retired from MMA on several occasions. He last fought in December 2019 against former WWE star Alberto El Patron.