| Assembly Member Tom Ammiano is a San Francisco Treasure. Always has been and always will be. But Tom Ammiano is special. He's hilarious. He's passionate. He's progressive. He's just Tom Ammiano.
And this brings me to the San Francisco Democratic Party annual gala, or the nerd prom as my friend Beth Spotswood likes to call it. All was going well, a smidge boring, but Former Assembly Speaker/Da Mayor Willie Brown got up on stage to really take it up a notch. Brown let the crowd know that he had another offer on the same night for the President's Cup dinner, a PGA event, that featured Tiger Woods, Bill Clinton and the Governor. The event just so happened to be in the same hotel.
The remark about the Governor being in the building brought a smattering of boos, as you might expect from a Democratic audience. But the event continued on as expected, dinner was served. And as people were just finishing dinner, we began to notice something of a commotion.
And there he was, the Governator. On our turf. In the San Francisco Democratic Party event. This wasn't the Assembly Chamber. This was a raucous Democratic Party event.
He was talking with Willie Brown and his entourage for a while. And then, former SF Board of Supes President Aaron Peskin brought him up on the stage. As he began to talk, Asm. Ammiano yelled out "You LIE."
The Governor began to say a few words about how he heard that the Democratic Party event was in the same hotel as a chorus of boos and other random hissing noises rained down upon him. I, of course, was taking pictures with my cell phone. Apparently the Governor felt that he should visit the Democratic event because he "sleeps with one every night." And then proceeded to tell the room that he was "post-partisan" and that he didn't care whether you were a Republican or a Democrat.
And as he continued, Asm. Ammiano still couldn't believe this man was up on the stage at a Democratic event. The San Francisco Assembly Member yelled something to the effect of "kiss my gay ass" as he left the room.
But the more interesting part was when Tom Ammiano accepted an award, the SF DCCC Trailblazer Award, from Willie Brown. Ammiano began by praising Brown's excellent record on LGBT issues. And then continued by hinting at their differences in the past. And then he proceeded to bludgeon the Governor's record. He questioned why he was holding bills hostage to get a bad water deal. He questioned why a Governor who has vetoed the Harvey Milk Day bill would stand up in front of a room that was at least 25% LGBT. He politely asked Mayor Brown to send a message to the governor to sign the bills already.
And finally, Senator Mark Leno closed the proceedings for the evening. Leno took a different tack than Ammiano's passion. He simply stated the facts. He said that the events of this evening were all funny and stuff, but the fact is that this Governor had cut state workers salaries by 15% with the furloughs. This Governor wanted to cut IHSS salaries to minimum wage. This Governor illegally used the line item veto to slash funding for domestic violence shelters. And that he, and the Senate Democrats, were going to fight him tooth and nail.
And to a loud applause, Leno stepped off the stage and the crowd began to thin. And everybody was saying, "um, wow."
I'm still trying to collect my thoughts from the evening, so I apologize if the order is slightly skewed or I missed an important point. Feel free to add anything in the comments if you were there.