Several people have asked me (some more seriously than others), "Hey, Ken. Are you running for Governor? Why not?" Here's the answer I just emailed to one such friend:
I am not running for Governor - and you are not the first to ask. For years and years, starting in the mid-seventies, I'd always said to folks (half joking), "I’m running for Governor in 2002." It always seemed far enough off that I could put off the decision. In 2001, I started seriously considering it, but changed my mind in early 2002 based on my work and the time commitment.
This year I suppose it could have been a possibility, would have been a lot of fun, and in some sense it could be seen as a missed opportunity. But I didn't feel that I had time to prepare as well as I would have liked - mostly because I refused to even think about it until the recall was a reality - as well as the time commitment is still a problem, I like better odds than 1:135, and, frankly, I've got better things I could do with $3,500.
I did once run for Mayor of Sacramento - in 1996. One of the other Mayoral candidates, who I got to know very well through that period, was Leonard Padilla: bounty hunter, bail bondsman, law school president, and current candidate for Governor. Leonard always runs for Mayor of Sacramento, and I'm loving watching him do his thing statewide now. At one of the Mayoral debates, back in 1996, he promised that if elected he'd appoint me to an advisory position in the Mayor's office. I wonder if that promise still holds, if he's in the Governor's office?
I must admit, though, while most people are calling this a circus, I'm enjoying every minute of it, and wondering if I do want to start preparing for another race in a year or two...
(BTW: In Sacramento, I came in 5th of 6 candidates, with 3.5% of the vote. I did that with a campaign budget of $500 and refusing to accept even a dime in outside donations. While the incumbent Mayor spent over $5.00/vote to be re-elected, I spent only $0.18/vote to get out an anti-corporate welfare message and expose some corrupt city contracting practices to the media. It was the best $500 I ever spent. Leonard came in 3rd or 4th.)
Today's recall news:
* Fringe candidates define themselves on recall ballot
* 'Pumping Iron' reveals young, brash, even scary Schwarzenegger
* Davis hits new low (poll numbers, not scandal)