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CA-Gov: Eric Jaye Leaves Gavin Newsom's Campaign

by: Brian Leubitz

Mon Jul 27, 2009 at 15:40:36 PM PDT

To say that Eric Jaye has led the politics behind SF Mayor Gavin Newsom is something of misstatement.  Sure, if you google his name, you'll find a bunch of accusations about Jaye being some sort of puppet-master.  But that never was really true, Jaye worked extremely well with Newsom, in ways few others have really been able to emulate. Jaye certainly was there every step of the way, but his relationship wasn't of a puppet and a master.  There were always too many people around Newsom for that really to be the case.

When Newsom hired Garry South there were whispers that Jaye was being sidelined. Turns out it was true:

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom's longtime top political strategist, Eric Jaye, has resigned from his gubernatorial campaign. "There was a fundamental difference in how to run the campaign," Jaye told us today.(SF Chronicle 7/27/09)

Look, you certainly  don't bring somebody like South on-board and expect everything to stay the same.  Now, South is a man whom I don't always see eye-to-eye with, but he has won a statewide race with the ever-popular Gray Davis.  But, being that it was Gray Davis, you do have to give him props for winning with that horse.

Now, South has a history with the radical moderates over at the Democratic Leadership Council, and that's how he won with Davis. He talked ToughOnCrimeTM, business, and all that jive. And it won him the 1998 election. But California is in a very different place today than it was then. If Garry South is going to be running Newsom's campaign, he'll have to update his strategy. It didn't work with Steve Westly, and it won't fare much better now.

For the time being, I'll reserve judgment, but Eric Jaye was an enormous asset to Newsom's campaign. It is hard to see how a departure of somebody with that kind of relationship and with that kind of intricate knowledge of the candidate is good for the campaign.

Brian Leubitz :: CA-Gov: Eric Jaye Leaves Gavin Newsom's Campaign
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epic loss for Newsom (4.50 / 2)
Newsom has a major loyalty problem, there is no longer a single person on his gubernatorial campaign who was with him for his only real race, which was only six years ago. Not a recipe for success in politics.

If Garry South is going to be running Newsom's campaign, he'll have to update his strategy. It didn't work with Steve Westly, and it won't fare much better now.

That quote reminded me of this:

As the Davis Administration began slipping into an energy crisis and then an economic one, South's advice offered the classic short-term objectives:  keep raising money, smash your opponents, get through the next election, and it will all go away.

Well, three out of four isn't bad, unless the one you missed ends up bringing down the whole operation.  But this exposed South's greatest flaw:  If the sledgehammer can't do the job, he has no other tools and no other techniques to offer.

Newsom should have chosen Jaye instead of South. Now the Newsom campaign is effectively broke while burdened with huge unfavorable poll numbers and the only person who can effectively manage the candidate just quit. It takes more than a DLC playbook to be viable and this is news the campaign is heading south.

Twitter: @BobBrigham

I can't resist being snarky here ... (5.00 / 2)
Did Gavin fuck his wife too??

wow (0.00 / 0)

Papers filed to recall Huber filed... in other 2010 campaign news.

That won't go anywhere (0.00 / 0)
The recall is being pushed by a longtime wingnut who has no money but a lot of time on his hands. There is no case against Huber, she's done nothing wrong and nothing to piss off her constituents, so this will go exactly nowhere.

You can check out any time you like but you can never leave

[ Parent ]
whiny citizen (0.00 / 0)
Isnt' anyone else going to run?  
Is this really "it" for the field?  Either (1) the young jerky guy, or (2) the tired firebrand -- that's it?  

(Sigh)  'No Golden State Obama' on the horizon, huh.

I've heard some talk of Jack O'Connell (0.00 / 0)
and at this point, I'd look hard at ABGavin&Jerry.

[ Parent ]
Eric Jaye (0.00 / 0)
Eric is a great guy and a brilliant strategist. He understands what works in the blue counties, the red ones, and every demographic inside and out.  

does this mean... (0.00 / 0)
does this mean that they're going to pretty much give up this "twitter/facebook" stuff and just have Gavin raising money for a lot of TV ads instead?

I have to say, historically being an SF mayor has never really been a stepping stone to higher office...it's rare anyone has ever made it, and this idea that SF electeds are somehow all going to win primaries for AG, Ins. Commissioner, and Governor is a bit of a stretch.

SF is not that big of a base to start with, and unless you have a huge bankroll for ads, no one is going to hear about their campaigns, beyond what the whacked to the bone press corps says in a handful of news reports, and whatever the insane right wing talking machine says.


Bad mistake (0.00 / 0)
True, South got Davis elected.  But consider the opposition.  Al Checchi was such a zero and then there was Dan Lungren.  Not much more there.

I am an activist who likes to get involved early in a campaign, but there is no chance that I will be involved with a Garry South campaign.  He can be clever but I never have the sense that he is completely honest.

Perhaps I'll end up voting for Newsom, but I'm not working for him and won't give money.  No other choices?  Are we sure?

Please, Antonio ... Reconsider (5.00 / 1)
Compared with the other options, you're looking better every day.

Yeah, yeah ... I know.  I don't live in Southern California -- let alone L.A.

[ Parent ]
I don't think you know Antonio (0.00 / 0)
If you did live in L.A., you would probably have a different opinion.  

[ Parent ]
You neglected to mention Jane Harman in the '98 Primary (0.00 / 0)
She and Al beat the hell out of each other in the 1998 Democratic primary election for governor.

while they were busy raising each other's negatives, Davis slide right under the radar to get the nod.

[ Parent ]
dear lord, not that bad penny again (0.00 / 0)
i really, really hate the fact that garamendi quit this race.

Me Too (0.00 / 0)
I am so NOT in love with the two current choices.  

[ Parent ]
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