Huffington Out?

Posted by: on Sep 30, 2003 | No Comments

Since the debate last week, talk has been stirring that independent gubernatorial candidate Arianna Huffington may quit to prevent a GOP coup and throw her support behind Democrat Cruz Bustamante. There has been some early signals of coziness, with Bustamante supporting Huffington’s Clean Elections Initiative.
This comes on the heals of a poll last week which showed that 63% of voters supported the recall, with Schwarzenegger leading at 40% followed by Bustamante at 25%. Huffington had 2%. However, the poll assumes that 47% of voters at the polls will vote GOP, despite Republicans only being 35% of registered voters in the state. In reality, support for the recall is probably about 50/50, with Schwarzenegger and Bustamante in a statistical dead heat.
Of course, if McClintock drops out, then we really might be in trouble — albeit many of his supporters are the types that would just as well vote for Hitler over someone who supported gay unions.
I like Arianna… she’s loud-mouthed, usually dead-on, and unafraid. She’s grounded in reason and common sense, although perhaps overly optimistic on the reality of implementation. (But who isn’t?) I still laugh when I think about her showing up at Arnold’s running-paper filing event, and generally being a pest to get her face out there. It worked, her picture graced the front page of the NYT the next day — along with Arnold’s of course. That was smart. And her Special Interest Brothel is a real hoot.
In reality, I think her biggest liability isn’t her past, her Greek accent, or her attack-like nature in the debates. I think it’s her gender. Yes, there’s been a few female governors in this country, but I think one of our state’s biggest assets maybe detrimental to women seeking positions of power — our diverse population and culture. One word: machismo. I don’t think she ever expected to win, but she’s important for getting issues on the table which otherwise might of been ignored.
In any event, the recall itself is wrong. It’s a perversion of government and a 100-year old law which didn’t allow for or protect against well-funded coup attempts. (Ironically, Issa now opposes the recall because of the Schwarzenegger vs. McClintock dissent in the California GOP.)
And despite this recall circus, voters remain generally apathetic and uneducated on the candidates or issues. So, remember — in the end, no matter what happens, it’s no one fault’s but your own.
Arnold’s 1977 flick Pumping Iron is playing at the Roxie in the mission.