Gascon comments on Lee perjury allegations

Photo by Luke Thomas/Fog City Journal

Luke Thomas from Fog City Journal showed up at a press conference District Attorney George Gascon was holding on another topic, and threw in a question about the allegations that Mayor Ed Lee lied under oath before the Ethics Commission. Gascon's comments were, as I would expect, pretty well couched in political-DA language, but the man who initially filed the domestic violence charges that set off this legal episode came down clearly on the side of having Ethics investigate further:

Luke sent me a transcript of Gascon's full remarks, to wit:

“I think that the first thing that we have to do is we have to allow the Ethics Commission to continue what they’re doing. This is an ongoing hearing by the Ethics Commission. The voters of San Francisco, through the Charter, gave the Ethics Commission a tremendous amount of power -- they wanted a very robust process. The Ethics Commission has the ability to call witnesses and put witnesses under sworn testimony and I think it is appropriate for the Ethics Commission to continue to inquire into this. Once they have completed the process, we will evaluate and, if appropriate, we will move accordingly. If the evidence surfaces that we have sworn testimony to indicate that perjury has taken place then we will certainly evaluate whether that will be appropriate to prosecute. At this point, we need to let the Ethics Commission do its work.”

I got in touch with Gascon's press person, Stephanie Ong Stillman, and she confirmed that the DA thinks right now Ethics ought to be handling this:

"We don't want to interfere with the Ethics Commission's ongoing process.
All we know is what's being reported in the newspapers.  These allegations
arose in the context of an ongoing Ethics Commission hearing, therefore the
Ethics Commission is the most appropriate body to look into this matter."

Doesn't sound like Gascon is eager to launch his own inquiry. But he's at least interested in hearing what the key witnesess have to say -- and he seems to agree that they should be placed under oath.

In fact, Gascon seems to be saying that he will look to Ethics to conduct the initial investigation -- which just puts more pressure on the commissioners to allow Mirkarimi's lawyers to put Walter Wong and Christina Olague on the stand.

I wonder if Lee is starting to regret setting off this whole spectacle. If he'd just demurred and allowed the voters to weigh in with a recall election, he could have avoided what may be a costly political mistake.

Oh, and by the way: Since the Chron made a huge deal out of Ivory Madison's sworn statement -- much of which was tossed out as inadmissible -- it's worth reading the entire statement of Eliana Lopez, which is posted here.


"Although the wind blows terribly here
the moonlight also leaks
between the roofplanks
of this ruined house."

~Ono no Komachi

Yes, read the entire statement of Eliana Lopez!

Posted by lp on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 4:14 pm

And that's perfectly reasonable given that, at this point, there is no actual evidence of any perjury. There is just a contradictory and accusative statement by a person who admits she wasn't even present for the alleged discussion.

So Lee continues his testimony, and that's that. A storm in a tea cup, blown out of all proportion by the SFBG. What's new?

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 4:38 pm

Last year when Occupy had it's 15 minutes of fame, SFBG was naturally all over it. It became obvious to many that Occupy would fizzle out once winter arrived, and that would be it. And yet all through the winter SFBG printed "nothing articles" talking up Occupy as if it were still a big thing.

Tim etc. hoped in the Spring Occupy would become active and newsworthy again, and so the articles continued into the Spring, constantly trying to "big up" Occupy.

Spring came, then the summer, and it became obvious to everyone that Occupy was done. Finally SFBG "got it" and the articles stopped. But the point was that you spent months trying to talk it up. You weren't reporting news - you were trying to shape it. Ineffectively.

And now a vacuous perjury allegation by a bitter and biased political loser (Walker) has you all in a tizzy again, with article after article, trying to talk it up. We all know how this well end. It will fizzle out but you'll keep whing and posting about it for weeks, until you find some other non-story to focus on.

It's all highly entertaining. Meanwhile a real story - a wfie-beating sheriff. Nah. No interest there.

Posted by Anonymous on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 4:55 pm

Steven covering announcements of the myriad of challengers to Olague in vaguely menacing tones while Tim writes pieces talking about how much he wants her to "be successful", how he falls on his knees every night and thanks God Olague was appointed Supervisor - but how tenuous her position is and there are rumors the "progressive community" is unhappy with her...

It's so trite. And maybe a decade ago people would have been scared because then progressives were able to wield influence. But what have they done lately other than fracture into Maoist-like cliques? Fighting with each other over whether yanking your wife's arm and withholding food from her is "serious" or not while casting aspersions on Mirkarimi's opponents as "radical feminists?" A decade ago who would have thought this is where it would all end up?

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:41 pm

Unfortunately, the hot social media company Pinterest just moved to San Francisco from Palo Alto. That means more jobs, more revenue and, worst of all, more successful, happy young people in the city. It's going to result in a couple of days of intense seething.

Posted by Troll on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:38 pm

Poor Tim - this is very bad news for him :-(

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 7:19 pm

Pinterest actually looked into moving into the SFBG's old building. The irony of a tech firm occupying the former HQ of the mouthpiece of the SF Left would have been too delicious. Almost as good as the building being converted to million dollah condos.

Somewhere Bruce is chuckling into his clandestine stash of foie gras.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 8:27 pm

Grabbing your spouse's wrist is hardly a "wife beating"...

A slap is closer to a punch than a "wrist grab" is to a "beating".

When the "wrist grab" happened...Mirkarimi was NOT the sheriff, but the sheriff-elect, which is, by the way, NOT "Saint-Elect"

This attempt to toss out Mirkarimi is a slap in the face to the will of the voters
who elected him.

Posted by Jack Barry on Jul. 17, 2012 @ 10:03 am

Grabbing your spouse's wrist is hardly a "wife beating"...

A slap is closer to a punch than a "wrist grab" is to a "beating".

When the "wrist grab" happened...Mirkarimi was NOT the sheriff, but the sheriff-elect, which is, by the way, NOT "Saint-Elect"

This attempt to toss out Mirkarimi is a slap in the face to the will of the voters
who elected him.

Posted by Jack Barry on Jul. 17, 2012 @ 10:04 am

Double standard. Somehow the results of an election are fungible on command while the Ethics Commission process is sacrosanct, perhaps because the DA, Mayor and CA each have an appointment to that can comprise a majority of the EC?

Posted by marcos on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 4:58 pm

Not that I expect to get a lot of expert, unbiased information in this forum but here is the question.

Suppose that David Chiu, Scott Weiner, Carmen Chu and Sean Elsbernd are sitting home and they read that Lee said under oath that he didn't talk to any Supervisors about suspending Mirkarimi. But they know it not to be true, that he asked them about it. Don't they have some type of obligation to report that they are aware that a serious crime of perjury seems to have been committed? Couldn't they get in trouble if it was later revealed that they just kept quiet about a crime that they had inside information on?

Posted by Troll on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:27 pm

claimed otherwise, then it might be an issue. Might just be a misundestanding between them or a matter of memory, but it would at least be a contradiction.

The thing here though is that no Supe is saying that - only a diehard pro-Ross supporter with an axe to grind. If the only witness against ross had been his biggest political enemy, the SFBG would been howling with outrage.

Moreover, it is perfectly reasonable that Lee might have talked to the supes about Ross. So even if such discussions took place, so what? They weren't jurors back then. In factm they're not really jurors now.

It's all a big non-issue.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:38 pm

ignoring the advice of the Supes. Remember how they felt a collaborative form of government was far more preferential than an "imperial mayor?" Now they don't want the mayor talking to the Supes - they're aghast that he may have discussed this issue with any member of the Board. Tim is clutching his pearls in horror at the idea while simultaneously screeching that the DA must investigate IMMEDIATELY.

It's laughable. However - you really need to hand it to progressives because they're finally learning to play politics like a blood sport. Unfortunately they've chosen the most inconsequential of offices on which to fight their last stand. It's like using a nuclear weapon to defend Andorra - they're literally fighting to retain an office which has the authority of dog catcher.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 9:04 pm

Right on. Chiu, Chu, Weiner, and Elsbernd need to step forward. Unfortunately each may have participated in jury tampering by discussing with the Mayor, an attorney who knows he violated the law and then perjured himself.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 26, 2012 @ 1:21 pm

Kudos to Luke for showing up and posing a question to the DA. I find myself spending more time reading the intelligent comments posted at his news site, and more and more skipping the inane remarks here from the trolls and guests and anonymous folks. Maybe one day the Guardian will follow the comments policy of Fog City Journal and require posters to register.

Posted by MPetrelis on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:27 pm

But if you prefer it there, don't let the door hit . . .

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

Don't require people to register but allow registered users to filter out those who do not register, problem solved.

Posted by marcos on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

The trolls can still make slanderous statements maligning you, so even if YOU can't see it, everyone else can. Worse, they can pretend to be YOU, putting words in your mouth (stuff you would never say). If you don't mind a little character assasination, I suppose that solves the problem. For my part, I stopped using my name on this site a long time ago. That was the only thing that worked on a site that doesn't require registration...for me, anyway. I got tired of setting myself up for abuse.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:14 pm

To be used sparingly.

But SFBG doesn't censor as a matter of principle. It's one of the things they get right.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:26 pm

remists with simple facts (plus URLS for corroborating websites such as in regards to poll results, mind you.). No?

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:51 pm

Daniele, Erika, AnnG and various other fake women? To make it appear that more than one woman supports Ross?

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 7:08 pm name is daniele and i speak for myself. nobody has co-opted me. so, easy on the flights of fancy, ok? in other words, count me out of your conspiracy theory.

Posted by Daniele E. on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 11:19 pm

"female" posters here. You should really mix up your syntax if you want to get away with that.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 9:18 am

are so amusing. Please don't stop.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 7:39 am
Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 9:19 am

That was a decent result.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 7:34 pm

whining about getting the boot from sfgate by lilli.

Posted by matlock on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 8:30 pm

Of course, the Chron has turned into a regular home base for rightists and troglodytes, so it is of little wonder why you would seek to portray my expressed sentiment in a bad light, but again:

The fact is that I no longer contribute content on SFGate because I was banned, and in particular the circumstance under which I was banned and the manner in which it was done are most troubling.

The circumstance which resulted in my being banned was my post in response to an overtly and unfacetious anti-Arab statement which the moderator/censorship software -- whatever! -- would not remove despite my having reported it. (Actually, it seems that it *is* the Chronicle editorial policy that all Arabs *are* terrorists.)

The manner in which I was banned was particularly insulting because the masking my posts from others view was so obvious.

I may be mistaken, but I believe the hundreds of hours I spent generating quality content for the SFGate forum -- not the simple-minded right wing twittery which is by far so prevalent there -- represented something of value to them, and I obviously believe that those running the forum should be a bit more circumspect about alienating someone who is so prolific.

Perhaps that isn't the case, but it isn't my worry.

This matter of Ross Mirkarimi has convinced me beyond any return that the editorial slant is irremediable at the Chronicle, and frankly at this point I wish them nothing but ill. There are far, far, better sources for news.

Does that sound like "whining" to you? Fine then.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 5:31 am

" the hundreds of hours I spent generating quality content for the SFGate forum"

AKA troll. You honestly think they pick through whatever nonsense you post on there and evaluate its contribution to the overall ??

You violated some strict rule and were banned. You/your opinions are not that important

Posted by Greg on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 6:28 am

sense." The point I'm making is that by masking my past and future contributions, they have diminished themselves. Good riddance to SFGate.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 6:40 am

because the "strict rule" against racist hate speech *isn't* enforced strictly.

Furthermore, when I "violated" the rule, I did so in an *expressly* facetious manner; not as had been done when a commenter there proclaimed unambiguously "all Arabs are terrorists."

SFGate and the Chronicle suck and I will never tire of talking and writing about it. Thanks in advance for any continued opportunities to do so, fucker.

Posted by lillipubicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 6:57 am

Why don't you start a blog so that you can have all of your delightfully constructed pearls of great wisdom all in one place? Right now all you are doing is spreading them over environments that, quite frankly, don't seem to need the fertilizer. By starting a blog your many fans would know where to find you and you wouldn't waste your time writing for worthless trolls who don't have the ability to absorb your great wisdom and wit!

How soon can you start?

Posted by Troll on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 7:53 am

I absolutely love how important you think you are!
Have you met Marcos? You two are brothers of another mother.

Posted by Greg on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 8:56 am

get the last word on any blog he visits, which surely are many insofar as he doesn't get abnned all the time.

Quite why anyone would read his fictitious bile is another matter.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 9:21 am

An impressive share! I've just forwarded this onto a coworker who had been doing a little homework on this. And he actually ordered me breakfast due to the fact that I found it for him... lol. So allow me to reword this.... Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to discuss this subject here on your site.

Posted by Edmund on Jan. 23, 2013 @ 1:02 am

It would eliminate the SFBG problem where some people appropriate other's handles.

But I just looked at the comment section at Fog City for the linked to article. What a love fest about how Lee lied. The fact that it is only an accusation made 2nd or 3rd hand by two Lee detractors is nowhere to be seen. Debra Walker saying that Olague and Lee spoke takes precedence over Olaque saying that they didn't.

And then there is all this stuff about how the bomb scare was obviously manufactured because they didn't evacuate the entire room. The concept that they wanted to consult and advise the Mayor about the threat just doesn't exist.

So in other words, nirvana. A group of Progressives saying whatever they please without regard for its veracity. And no opposing viewpoints.

What could be better than that?

It is like a fantasy camp for a bankrupt political philosophy.

Posted by Troll on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:15 pm

It's not like they have jobs or anything, so can post all day long.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 6:28 pm

Huh? The leftists don't have a job? the rightwingers who post here all day clearly have nothing better to do with their time. I wonder how many are getting paid to clutter this site.

Oh, but I love you all anyway.

Posted by tim on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 8:04 pm

sometimes I think that a right wing web page will link something overly comical and there will be an influx of "Jesus or George Washington said..." but no right wingers post here on a regular basis. Of course no one is being paid to post on a web page with so little interest.

Posted by matlock on Jul. 09, 2012 @ 8:34 pm

You, matlock, are a right winger. Just because you are clever enough to know that appeals to overt (overt!) racism and invisible-man-in-the-sky talk isn't likely to further your aims on this particular forum doesn't make it any less true.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 5:59 am

But then 99% of the population are to the right of you, Lilli. you're hardly an impartial objective judge

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 2:48 pm

You've probably never encountered a real right-winger. Go visit Utah or South Carolina and then get back to me.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 9:22 am

Gotcha, so long as someone support same sex marriage then it is okay for them to have Reagan, Cantor or Ryan's economics, they're not right wing unless they hate the gay. Thanks for clearing that up.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 11:27 am

was that those who are called "right-wingers" here are left of center, overall.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 11:56 am

agenda forward. Right wingers seek to increase economic and political inequality. It doesn't matter whether -- or how -- they use issues such as gay rights or religion.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 12:10 pm

I'd like to meet him.

When you're dismissing someone like me who is left of Obama, politically, as being "right-wing", then you know you're hopelessly out of touch.

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 12:34 pm

on this thread. What are you talking about? No. Nevermind. It really doesn't matter if you are a right winger or simply a fool and a tool of right wingers. There is no meaningful difference in regard to the arguments you make.

Here's a tip: if you don't want to be thought of as a right-winger, quit striving to make their case.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 1:36 pm

So you're saying that "free" market, trickle down, supply side economics, the economics of the right wingers, white ringers, is okay so long as there is a hint of social liberalism that makes the person not a "right winger?"

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 1:15 pm

being a capitalist is hardly being "right wing"

Posted by Guest on Jul. 10, 2012 @ 2:50 pm

its proponents -- results in ever greater disparity in wealth; not to mention ever more destructive boom-bust cycles. As such, yes: capitalism is right wing.

Posted by lillipublicans on Jul. 12, 2012 @ 6:48 am

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