Just when Meg Whitman appeared to moving on to an explanation of WHY she was a non-voter most of her adult life, the GOP governor wannabe went on Ronn Owens’ KGO radio show Wednesday and dug herself in deeper, by accusing the Sacramento Bee of misreporting.
In his game changer investigation of Whitman’s voting record, the Bee’s Andrew McIntosh had written: “In an interview, Whitman said she was registered as a Republican before coming to California, but declined to say where the public record might be found. ‘Go find it,’ she said.”
But when Ronn asked her about that, eMeg claimed: “I didn’t say that.”
To which SacBee Political Editor Amy Chance diplomatically replied: “We are very comfortable with our reporting. We have a tape of the interview.”
Which, if you consult your Calbuzz Decoder Ring, means, “Screw you, Meg, and thank you for that.”
During the KGO interview, Her Megness also took a question from Alex in San Diego, who asked flat out if the Bee story was true: Did she or did she not vote before 2002? To which Meg replied:
“So the answer is that I don’t think the Sacramento Bee article is entirely accurate but it doesn’t really matter because my voting record is not good.”
Oy. Another shot at the Bee. The paper did, in fact, have to run a correction on the original story – but it was about Steve Poizner’s voting record, not Whitman’s. Said the Bee’s Chance about this Whitman comment: “We’ve not been asked to correct anything about our reporting on her record.”
Bottom line: as a put-this-matter-behind-me exercise in damage control, eMeg’s performance was damaging, and raised a host of new questions.
The Meg & Sarah Show: Owens seemed most upset about the fact that Whitman, who served as a national co-chair of John McCain’s presidential campaign, refused to denounce Sarah Palin as unqualified for the White House.
Meg kept saying it was McCain’s choice to pick Palin as a running mate, not hers. Pushed by Owens, she finally said, “It probably would not have been the choice that I would have made.”
And when Owens said “You wouldn’t hire her for a high position at eBay for any reason – you wouldn’t.” Meg replied, “No, but the president elect, er, the nominee of the party, that’s one of the things they get to do, to make that choice.”
Oops. So Meg admits she never would have hired the woman she backed for vice president: Not good enough for eBay but no worries as backup Leader of the Free World. Got it, and thank you for that.
Not exactly Lincoln-Douglas: It didn’t take long for Jerry Brown to try to wiggle out of Gavin Newsom’s call for face-to-face debates by saying he’s not an official candidate for governor, and anyway, he’s far too busy investigating the untimely passings of Michael Jackson and Anna Nicole Smith or something.
“As you may know,” Crusty mouthpiece Steve Glazer responded to Newsom’s invitation to hold 11, 90-minute debates around the state, “Attorney General Brown is not a declared candidate for Governor. While he has processed the paperwork to create an exploratory committee for that office, he is currently focused on doing his job as Attorney General — protecting consumers and prosecuting criminals.”
To which we say: Bushwah.
Obviously, Newsom is making the debate pitch, just one day after Brown formed his exploratory committee, purely for reasons of political strategy. If Brown debates him, Prince Gavin’s stature is instantly elevated just by appearing on the same stage; if he refuses, Newsom and Newsom’s brain, Garry South, have a handy issue with which to poke and jab Jerry on a daily basis (see: Chicken Suit, Whitman).
That said, our Department of Weights and Measures has weighed the measured arguments that Newsom and Brown have made on the issue and concludes that a couple of early debates between the two is a damn fine idea (as long as the boys in W&M get to moderate).
For one thing, the state’s problems have become so big and intractable that the candidates ought to be eager, ready and willing to let Californians, who are suffering from skyrocketing unemployment, virulent recession and declining schools, have a full and detailed sense of who has ideas for tackling this stuff, and who doesn’t, but is hoping to campaign and win with the same old, worn-out wheeze of 30-second sound bite spots.
For another, Brown really is shamelessly coasting, using the political version of Muhammad Ali’s aging champ rope-a-dope strategy. Although his pursuit of a May-December governorship trick is unprecedented in California, he’s been remarkably elusive about discussing what he wants to do, and would do differently, except for his Calbuzz interview way back in April.
Progressive Democrats particularly have a right to know which Jerry Brown they’d be nominating if they go for him in the primary, as the Dayen of Delphi argues persuasively over at Calitics.
It’s time for Crusty to suit up and get on the field. Debate — or face the Chicken’s Wrath.
Jerry Goes Hollywood: After enduring days of chortling by Team Newsom about Bubba Clinton’s endorsement and fundraising gig, the Brown Bunch fired back with a big buzz item of their own, planted in Variety: the founders of DreamWorks – Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen – will co-host a mondo glitterati fundraising kickoff bash for Jerry on Nov. 18.
“This will be a big launching pad for his campaign here,” said Andy Spahn, political consultant for the trio. (It’s the kind of thing that leads our friend Roger Salazar, who has worked with Newsom advisor Garry South and against Brown in the AG’s race, to declare today in Capitol Weekly his belief that Jerry will be the next goveernor.)
Looking at Brown’s wizened visage, it’s sometimes easy to forget he was the original rock star politician. Take that Elvis!