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