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Monday, August 13, 2007

SF Mayor Race: Daly Out, Chicken and Wolf In

Posted By on Mon, Aug 13, 2007 at 6:00 AM

Snitch Ben Wachs camped out at City Hall for the Mayor's race deadline on Friday. Thanks, dude. He brings us an eyewitness report below. Meanwhile, The Gate says Daly is out, Supe Tony Hall is in, and Newsom's still at 70 percent approval. Favorite comment:

fatboyschlong wrote: It really is too bad Daly decided against running for mayor against Newsom. I would have liked to see him exposed for what he is, a loser. And a sore loser at that. Newsom would mop up the floor with him and his one-sided agenda, defending the rights of drug addicts, criminals, and the homeless. He has no regard for law abiding citizens of this city. Good thing we voted in term limits.
Who can argue with a FATBOYSCHLONG? Wachs, thoughts?-d2

Stealing Gavin’s Election

There’s no “serious” challenger, but the not-so-serious ones are worth watching

By Benjamin Wachs

Chicken John arrived at the Department of Elections Friday bearing a giant, oversized

check. He had a baby on hand to kiss (“Stay in school,” he told it) and a small phalanx of photographers and video cameras watching, recording this … important? … occasion.

This was the day he would officially become a candidate for Mayor in the eyes of the law.

He was trailed by a worried looking Sheriff’s deputy.

Chicken was late, having just taken a victory lap through the city hall … all of it … with his check. He’s stopped by the mayor’s office and tried it out (“It’s nice,” he said) and even got a little face time with Gavin – by sheer accident. But once inside the Department of Elections, it was down to business – except for the constant whir of cameras – and the mundane filing of paperwork.

“So …” a clerk said “when you file your income taxes, that’s what you say? You’re a showman?”


“Your income comes from …”


“Ah … okay.”

After signing on the dotted line, Chicken had to take the Oath of Office required of all candidates (who knew?) to uphold the duties of office and defend us from all enemies, foreign and domestic.

I certainly feel safer.

“I wasn’t prepared for oaths,” Chicken said. “I wouldn’t have had two cups of coffee.”

Since the oversized check wasn’t pre-filled out, he had to make it out – in marker – to the department of elections. After that, it was time to pose for photo ops and television interviews.

“Why the big check?” a television reporter asked.

“So you’d put me on TV, dummy,” Chicken responded.

The interview ended abruptly.

And it was, indeed, all a publicity stunt: the check was a fake – he took it out with him. The real one had been quietly slipped in while no one was looking.

Outside City Hall, blogger Josh Wolf was scrounging for signatures – with an hour left until 5 o’clock he needed six to go before he, too, could officially join the mayoral race. When Chicken and entourage emerged, they began soliciting passers-by with him, trying to separate the San Francisco residents from the tourists. It may be a political first – they’ll almost certainly draw from the same pool of voters.

Wolf made it, and with 10 minutes left to go dashed down to City Hall’s basement to shove his paperwork into the right hands and swear to defend us against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

Welcome to campaign season 2007. Matt Gonzales decided not to run. Chris Daly decided not to run. Since nature abhors a vacuum, this is what you get: a showman, a blogger, and other assorted sideliners striving to make the race their own.

They’ll probably succeed: without the drama of a real challenger, no one will pay attention if Newsom spouts campaign platitudes. They’ll all pay attention to the guy with the giant check. That Friday, Chicken John had already done two television interviews. Newsom can either decided to engage his would-be challengers – and give them a platform – or he can stay safely in the forefront, win the race, but let the “competition” keep the spotlight.

Either way is fine with me: Chicken John and Josh Wolf have so far, against all odds, managed to make this race interesting. Far more interesting, I suspect, than if there was a “serious” candidate running. People who want to win will say anything to get elected: it’s surprisingly pleasant to hear what the people who don’t have to say.

I must not be the only one who thinks so: Chicken John says he raised $10,000 this week.

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David Downs


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