by Will Harper
Oakland City Council President Ignacio De La Fuente took the very unusual step of temporarily giving up his seat as council chairman Tuesday night and handing the gavel to a colleague. The move allowed De La Fuente to personally make the motion approving outgoing Mayor Jerry Brown's last-second appointment to the Port Commission. The mayor made the appointment even though Mayor-elect Ron Dellums had asked Brown to refrain from doing so. "I wanted to make sure nobody else took the heat for it," De La Fuente said of his decision to play musical chairs and make the motion himself. Hmmm, sounds fishy.
Councilmembers Jean Quan and Henry Chang will no doubt get heat from the Chinatown Chamber for not insisting on an Asian appointee. No, Nacho musta had another reason to make the symbolic gesture. "Also," De La Fuente allows, "it was an interesting message." A message to whom? "God," he cackled.
Well, we hope that De La Fuente isn't in the habit of telling God, "Fuck you," because that's what the message was for those reading between the lines. We suspect, however, his message wasn't intended for God, but for Dellums, who defeated De La Fuente in June. Dellums had lobbied council members not to vote for Brown's port commission appointee, Mark McClure, according to the Oakland Tribune.
De La Fuente will be a force to be reckoned with once Dellums takes office January 8. If you believe a story in the Sunday Oakland Tribune, De La Fuente is poised to be re-elected by his colleagues as city council generalissimo for another two years.
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