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Who’s the bigger clown in the Mirkarimi circus? Columnists beg to differ

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Maybe the best evidence for the validity of Chronicle columnist Deborah J. Saunders observation that Mayor Ed Lee has stained his brand with his pernicious, ham-fisted handling of the Ross Mirkarimi affair: star columnist Willie Brown’s need to run interference for the mayor again today.

The alleged mayoral puppeteer dismisses Eliana Lopez as “a total actress” at the Ethics Commission, and spins the ethics proceedings (in which his guy, the mayor, fared poorly) as “entertaining as hell for the media” but otherwise “superfluous.”

Meanwhile, on Page E3 of the tabloid insert that’s the Chronicle’s Sunday opinion section, Saunders writes this about the Ethics hearing:

It was a waste of time and an abuse of power that proved only one thing: sometimes when a man sets out to destroy another‘s reputation, he ends up staining his own brand.

Now Lee looks like the bully. If he believed the bruise [on Lopez’s arm] was cause for firing, then he should have stuck with the case he could prove.  Instead, the mayor peddled a cover-up scenario that City Hall attorneys, despite their best efforts, could not prove.

What could have been a clean inquiry, Lee made dirty.

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