Bill Clin­ton, visit­ing S.F., dis­plays fa­mil­iar charm

San Francisco Chronicle - - BAY AREA - By Willie Brown

For­mer Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton was in town the other night for the Third Bap­tist Church cel­e­bra­tion, and he looked fit­ter than he has in years.

He had all of his weight back, good color and all of his for­mer charm and en­ergy.

My hunch is that he has ditched the ve­gan diet that he took up af­ter his heart trou­bles and is now back to the cheese­burg­ers that made him great.

He spoke with zest, sang ev­ery stanza of the Ne­gro na­tional an­them, “Lift Ev­ery Voice and Sing,” and shook hands and posed for self­ies with any­one and ev­ery­one at the San Fran­cisco event.

His staff had given me strict or­ders to have him out the door no later that 7:30 p.m. be­cause he

had an­other com­mit­ment, But when the clock struck leav­ing time, he showed no signs of let­ting up, telling me, “Hey, don’t worry. I have no place to go. I’m not go­ing home, you know.”

Back too, was his sense of hu­mor, telling the as­sem­bled crowd that he had a new job.

“I’m a book sales­man,” he said, in ref­er­ence to his pro­mot­ing Hil­lary Clin­ton’s new mem­oir.

Clin­ton was in­tro­duced by Gov. Jerry Brown, who also shows no signs of let­ting up.

The clock may be tick­ing down on his fi­nal term as gover­nor, but I don’t think he’s ready to go back and whack weeds at the old fam­ily home­stead in the back lands of Co­lusa County.

Who shows up at a Bap­tist church on a Fri­day night, un­less you are run­ning for some­thing?

Or can’t stop run­ning for some­thing.

Think about it: He’s com­ing off one of the most suc­cess­ful Leg­isla­tive ses­sions of his ca­reer, where he not only scored the first gas tax hike, but also the first cred­i­ble af­ford­able hous­ing pack­age. He’s the na­tion’s lead­ing voice on cli­mate change, and prob­a­bly has the high­est poll num­bers of any politi­cian in the state.

Plus, he has some­thing like $20 mil­lion in un­used po­lit­i­cal con­tri­bu­tions. With those kinds of num­bers, even at 79 he wouldn’t have to run for of­fice — he could just walk in.

And if by any blue moon chance Sen. Dianne Fe­in­stein de­cides not to run?

I’m just say­ing.

Dream­ing to­gether:

The de­ci­sion by House Mi­nor­ity Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Demo­cratic leader Chuck Schumer and Pres­i­dent Trump to sit down over Chi­nese food may very well have moved the agenda for­ward for the fu­ture of “Dream­ers” brought here il­le­gally by their par­ents, but it may well be a one-off deal.

Nancy and Chuck are firmly of the opin­ion that they got a com­mit­ment to al­low the 800,000 Dream­ers to stay, and that they gave up noth­ing in re­turn other than agree­ing to bet­ter bor­der se­cu­rity — but not a wall — which is some­thing they al­ready sup­port.

But Trump clearly got what he wanted, which is be­ing the top story of the day.

Trump has no real agenda or core be­liefs. Ev­ery­thing is up for ne­go­ti­a­tion, as long as he can claim a win.

And he may win dou­ble with this tac­tic. By be­ing so agree­able with Chuck and Nancy, that leaves only the most pro­gres­sive Democrats still left to call for his im­peach­ment.

Who would’ve thunk it?

Ki­wa­nis cruise: I al­ways won­der who goes on those group river cruises through Europe. I got the an­swer when I spoke to the San Fran­cisco Ki­wa­nis Club.

They’re just the over-60, well-ed­u­cated, well-in­formed, well-re­tired and in­quis­i­tive types of peo­ple who would gen­uinely en­joy go­ing down the Danube as a group, stop­ping at all the his­toric spots and grilling the hell out of the tour guide at ev­ery turn.

I say that be­cause I was grilled for an hour and a half on ev­ery­thing from Pres­i­dent Trump to the fu­ture of the Dream­ers.

And talk about se­ri­ous.

One gen­tle­man asked if I had con­cerns about the use of elec­tronic vot­ing.

“The more hack­able, the bet­ter, for folks like me,” I quipped. “We can’t do that with pa­per bal­lots.” Not a sin­gle laugh. God, it’s tough be­ing taken se­ri­ously.

Foun­tain fix: Tun­ing on the wa­ter at the Vail­lan­court Foun­tain has done noth­ing to im­prove that long stand­ing civic eye­sore.

My good friend Herb Caen once de­scribed the cubed con­glom­er­a­tion as look­ing like some­thing a “square-assed dog” left be­hind.

He was right then, and dou­bly right now.

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