A fundraiser put on by heavyweights in Los Angeles' liberal-leaning environmental community should have been a tough crowd for Kevin James. But James, affable, polite and the only Republican candidate in a Los Angeles mayor's race dominated by City Hall Democrats, had no trouble chatting up guests as he made his way around the crowded event for the Los Angeles League of Conservation Voters. Richard Mueller, an executive with a multinational manufacturer, and Dave Alba, his business partner, seemed happy to corner him. The men spent several minutes outlining a massive freight automation project they are hoping to bring to San Pedro — a tough sell in labor-friendly L.A. They were at the party hoping to line up support for the project... If elected, James would make history as the first gay mayor of Los Angeles. He's now a well-regarded litigator in private practice, a former radio talk show host and a longtime activist with AIDS Project Los Angeles who served for a time as its chairman.