So now Gov. Jerry Brown says he’s opposed to naming the historic west span of the Bay Bridge for Willie Brown. But since the scheme cooked up by a few of Brown’s pals in the legislature (led, ostensibly, by Compton Assemblyman Isadore Hall) is in the form of a non-binding resolution, the governor has no authority to veto it. (That’s no typo, by the way, we did say Compton.) Approval in the Senate could happen before the session ends this week. The governor—saying what loads of other politicians, including undoubtedly some supporting the re-name, believe but are too timid to utter—says that the historic name should not be tampered with. He says he hopes the public continues to call it the Bay Bridge instead of the “Willie L. Brown, Jr. Bridge.” (Duh.)
The Willie Bridge caper is one of those crass exercises in self-aggrandizement that’s equal parts tragedy and comedy. For a sample of the latter, here’s a quote from Willie’s water boy, Hall, about His Williness:
"He is a state icon -- and even internationally."