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Buh-Bye, Kevin. Send a Postcard!

Feb
4
2005

Well you knew former Secretary of State Kevin Shelley’s days were numbered when he was forced – by the thundering silence emanating from his party since his legal troubles first started – to float the conditions under which he would be resigning with the San Francisco Chronicle’s political columnist Matier & Ross.
The boys informed the world that Shelley would quit if he 1)had a job and 2) got immunity. It was laughable. One, that Shelley would shop for federal immunity in the pages of his hometown newspaper – the one that’s fighting with the local US Attorney’s office — and two that M&R would give credence to the idea which Shelley clearly dialed in himself.


Funny thing. Shelley got nada. Goose egg. And now he ain’t even Secretary of State. You want a new definition of “politically tone deaf”? Look it up. I’ll bet there’s a little picture of Kevin Shelley all alone as he has been since this story broke.
His departure has lots of implications for the Democrats. But this appointment is a great chance for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to build a “bench” for his party by putting a moderate Republican – the ones that are left – in state office. The other state office holders – Attorney General Bill Lockyer, Controller Steve Westly and Treasurer Phil Angelides – are all expected to vie to be the Democrats’ gubernatorial nominee in 2006.
So watch for the governor to appoint a moderate to liberal Republican, probably a self-employed businessman and probably someone who he can trust with the details of the special election we’re probably going to have here in the fall. Steve Poizner(link no longer active) might not be a bad choice.
The search for a replacement has been rumored for oh, three months now. But so has this other, equally interesting idea, that fits in with the governor’s ideas about reforming Sacarmento: Making the job a permanent appointment. State Republicans say it’s a way to create a nonpartisan office but what they really mean is “an office not controlled by incumbent Democrats.” So there’s a chance we could get a conservative Democrat — former San Jose Mayor and Arnold supporter Tom McEnerney has been mentioned — with the understanding that the job would become an appointment, not an elected office. It’s unlikely. But it’s never safe to bet against Gov. Terminator.
UPDATE: Two full time Sacramento witers, The Bee’s Dan Weintraub and the LATimes’ George Skelton (link no longer active) have their own takes focusing on the state’s Latino voters.

Share  Posted by Chris Nolan at 6:57 PM | Permalink

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