Willie Brown’s Warning to Democrats
KQED’s Scott Shafer attended Willie Brown’s annual pre-election breakfast this morning. His report:
A veritable Who’s Who of San Francisco politics filled a downtown ballroom for a campaign ritual this morning–a pre-election breakfast hosted by former Mayor Willie Brown. The event is part face-time, part fundraiser for Willie Brown’s Public Policy Institute. It’s also a chance for students, candidates and lobbyists to rub elbows with elected officials and other local power brokers. The breakfast headliner was Governor Schwarzenegger, who praised the endangered art of political compromise.
Afterwards, Brown expressed concern that Democrats aren’t ready to get their voters to the polls on election day. “I don’t think Jerry Brown has a ground operation,” the former Mayor said. “I don’t think Newsom has a ground operation. I don’t think Boxer has one either. And the Democratic party doesn’t have much of one. It looks like they’re relying on organized labor to deliver.”
But Brown warned, “labor doesn’t always have the total interest of the Democratic party at hand, labor has labor’s own personal interests.”
And labor was notably absent this morning — union officials are angry at Brown’s support for Proposition B — a local measure that would increase city workers’ contributions to their health and retirement benefits. And Willie Brown won’t likely forget that any time soon.