CityBeat has fanned the flames of recall for the past month, so it's not without a sense of irony this week that we report that rumors of a potential revolt against Mayor Dick Murphy have taken on a life of their own.
Earlier this week, Channel 8 news quoted San Diego's version of "The Donald," Doug Manchester (he apparently prefers the moniker "Papa Doug"), as saying, "I think Mayor Murphy should resign because the city has been run poorly" and "I have not done anything on the mayoral recall, but if somebody decided to do that, I would be willing to contribute to such an effort." But when CityBeat called Father Doug's people, they tried to stuff the sound bite back in the real-estate mogul's mouth. Employing an old sports-analogy chestnut-something to do with a coach yanking a tired quarterback-a spokesman downplayed Manchester's remarks, saying he wasn't calling for Murphy to resign and would only entertain the possibility of supporting, but not funding-definitely not funding-a recall if approached to do so in the future.
And while Dougie Daddy will have to contain his recall glee for 70 more days-he has to wait until June 8, six months from the day Murphy started his second term, to launch a can-Murphy campaign-CityBeat will continue to out those citizens rumored to be considering a bid for the city's top office, as well as those we would bid a week's salary to see in the mix.
Front Runner Bob FilnerAge: 63Best known as: United States Congressman for California's District 51 (1992 to present)
Sign he's running: We asked him and he said, "No comment," which sounds an awful lot like, "Yes, I'd love to be the mayor of San Diego. Where do I sign up?"
Why he's favored: A former City Councilmember, the Democratic congressman could do well returning to his roots in city that's never leaned as far to the left as it does today.
Stumbling points: Filner would probably rather take on Assemblymember Juan Vargas, whom he's bested twice in the past, in another spirited congressional election-and that doesn't happen until next year. If he's mayor, he can't go toe-to-toe with Vargas now, can he?
Campaign Slogan: In a British accent: "Bob's yer uncle-vote fer Bob!"
Dark Horse Rev. George StevensAge: 73Best known as: San Diego District 4 City Councilman (1991 to 2002)
Sign he's running: Something along the lines of a burning bush or frog storm, but definitely something Biblical.
Why he's got a chance: Stevens takes his political advice directly from God, and God wouldn't tell him to run for office unless He wanted him to win, except for that last time around, which was obviously part of God's master plan for Stevens to become mayor.
Why he doesn't: Councilmember Tony Young stomped Stevens into political retirement last year by a margin of nearly 20 percent. If the Don of District 4 can't win there, he ain't got a chance in a citywide race.
Campaign slogan: "Jesus saved George so he could save San Diego" or "WWJD? Vote for George, that's what."