So Gavin Newsom has withdrawn from the 2010 California governor's race. I didn't plan to vote for him; I consider him a fast-talking flake (too fast talking sometimes). But this election poses a major problem for me: the Democrats, at this moment, have nobody in the race - except Jerry Brown, who isn't officially running, but is accumulating campaign funds like they were going to stop printing money tomorrow.
I will not vote for Jerry Brown again. Ever. For anything. I sat through his first governorship, and listened to him oppose Proposition 13 until it passed, when he pretended it was his idea all along. "Governor Moonbeam," pfah. I endured his mayorship of Oakland, a town he did a lot to destroy. He imposed his "strong mayor" government because he couldn't bear to have anyone disagree with him, ever; after he left, the clueless citizens of Oakland elected Ron Dellums, who can't make a decision to save his soul and doesn't really like running a city, anyway. (I never have figured out why he agreed to run. Maybe he felt flattered to be asked.) Lately Mr. Brown has been making a fool of himself in the Attorney General's office - although at least he had the sense to put his wire-tapping assistant on administrative leave. I wonder how long it'll take for the guy to be reinstated. The mere fact that he thought it was OK to record conversations secretly, in the AG's office, says volumes about the tone of that office - set by Mr. Brown. The whirring sound you hear is Pat Brown, an honest and honorable politician, spinning in his grave.
So - no Democrats running. Whom to vote for? Well, there's someone I'd like to see win it: Tom Campbell, the moderate Republican. Tom Campbell, who actually understands the state budget - he must be the only man other than the Comptroller who does. And Tom Campbell, being a moderate Republican, hasn't the chance of a celluloid cat in Hell, although I'm delighted to see him hanging in there and will certainly vote for him if he gets the nomination. The Republicans look like going for Meg Whitman, probably because she can pay for the campaign herself, even though her voting record is nearly nonexistent (great civic participation!) and she's on the record as donating to Democrats.
If the race turns into Jerry Brown versus Meg Whitman, I'm voting Green. Or Libertarian. I suppose I could register Republican so as to vote for Campbell in the primary, but it'd put me on the Republican mailing list, and I don't think I could stand it. We have to have somebody in the governor's mansion who will tell the idiot citizens of California the honest truth about the corner they've painted themselves into; and whoever that person may be, it ain't Jerry Brown.