An early Halloween in California

· long story short

In Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle, Matier & Ross help get us into the Halloween spirit by reporting on two extremely creepy moments in California politics.
Extremely Creepy Moment Number One
At a bipartisan post-election party, M&R write: “The 70 or so people at the party also included a number of lobbyists, one of whom went up to Schwarzenegger and joked, ‘Hi — I’m one of those special interests you promised to get rid of.’ At which point Gov. Arnold threw his arm around the guy and laughed, ‘I lied.'”
Creepy? You betcha. Like a creepy laughing clown. With enormous biceps.
Extremely Creepy Moment Number Two
You’ll remember that Democratic SF mayor Willie Brown was recently named one of the gazillion members of Arnold’s gubernatorial transition team. Fine. You’ll also remember that prior to the election, Willie was considered an outspoken opponent of the recall and big booster of Gray Davis.
In fact, after Brown was appointed to Arnold’s transition team, an article in Friday’s Chronicle paraphrased Brown’s spokesman as saying that “The fact that Brown is a Democrat, helped lead the campaign against the recall and voted for Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante — and still got tapped by Schwarzenegger to help put his new administration together — is a hopeful sign for the future.”
Fine. So Brown was an opponent of the recall. A great friend of Gray and Cruz. And now he’s on Arnold’s team. And that’s just bipartisanship in action. Not creepy at all. In fact, it’s borderline heart-warming. But wait…
In today’s MR: “In a luncheon panel sit-down with us, at the Corporate Counsels Association convention in San Francisco, Brown confided: ‘I was the one who told (Arnold) not to debate. I told him, ‘You are already the star — why debate? Why would you put up with talking to people that can only benefit from your presence?'”
So while he was out supporting Gray and Cruz, participating in strategy sessions and such, Brown was also offering friendly strategic advice to Arnold.
And now he’s bragging about it.
Which is like, wow. Just incredibly creepy.
Thanks M&R! Happy almost-Halloween to you too.