Mayoral Madness to Continue Today?

Categories: Politics
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Hey, how about John Brown for mayor of San Francisco? His progressive credentials are to die for.
The question of just what the hell to do about the pending mayoral vacancy in this here city comes up again at today's Board of Supervisors meeting. And while the supes last month voted to resume the "clusterfuck" process to replace Gavin Newsom today, all indications are San Francisco still won't have a successor named by the close of business hours.

While no one would volunteer to put money on the table, multiple City Hall sources SF Weekly spoke with predicted the votes would not be present today to open up the process and begin nominating potential candidates for mayor -- so the succession rigmarole will be kicked down the road. And, even if the process begins during today's meeting, it appears dubious that any nominee could eke out six votes.

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When you talk to folks in City Hall about what the hell they think is going to happen today, it breaks down this way: Moderates say the votes aren't there to start up the process; progressives say they don't know; and Bevan Dufty says he's fine with whatever.

"I'm agnostic," says the short-timer District 8 supervisor and mayoral candidate. Still, Dufty let it be known he'd rather not be casting a mayoral vote tomorrow. So when you add up the votes, it looks like there's five in favor of waiting, five in favor of getting the show on the road -- and David Chiu.

The board president earlier told SF Weekly that he'd rather wait until after Newsom leaves office (and, incidentally, Chiu becomes acting mayor) to hold a vote, for legalistic reasons. He also said, however, that he was "weighing" the arguments of those who'd prefer to vote sooner rather than later. We were unable to get a hold of Chiu for this story -- so it remains to be seen what will transpire today, especially if the board president is the deciding vote.

One thing that's a good bet: Supervisor Chris Daly making for good television. "I can't imagine Chris goes down quietly," said one City Hall source. "I'm expecting messiness."

When asked what he'd like to do during today's meeting, Daly responded simply by e-mailing the following passage:

"Be mild with the mild, shrewd with the crafty, confiding to the honest, rough to the ruffian, and a thunderbolt to the liar. But in all this, never be unmindful of your own dignity."

That's a quote from John Brown, the militant abolitionist who figured he could ignite a slave rebellion via guerrilla action at Harper's Ferry, Va. in 1859. In the grand scheme of things, one could argue that Brown was very much on the right side of history. In the short term, however, he was an ideologue who miscalculated badly, and got himself and virtually all of his followers killed.

Yeah -- messiness.

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