job opening in sacramento…”why anyone would want the job is a mystery”

The Governor’s Curse

Jerry Brown wants another shot at the governor’s office—why anyone would want the job is a mystery

The governor's curse

When state Attorney General Jerry Brown last week described the job of California governor as “a career terminator,” he knew of what he spoke.

Brown entered the office of governor in 1975 as a rock star in American politics—and exited eight years later forever tagged with the ignominious title of “Governor Moonbeam.” Once considered a viable contender for the White House (he ran unsuccessfully for president in 1976, 1980 and 1992), his gubernatorial experience left him contentious and anything but viable.

So, why, after acknowledging that the governor’s chair is so often a trap door to oblivion for ambitious politicians, does the perennially ambitious Brown want another chance to sit in it? His comments at a Lincoln Club of San Diego County luncheon last week were, after all, part of an image-rehabilitation tour in advance of an expected 2010 gubernatorial run.

Indeed, why anyone would want the job is a mystery. Of the 38 men to take the governor’s oath since California became a state, 28 would never be elected to public office again. Twenty-nine would serve only one term. Thirteen would be denied reelection nominations by their own parties.



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