The California Republican Convention stampeded through Burlingame this past weekend, and thanks to our friends at Patch, The Huffington Post was privy to all the Grand Old Action.
Well, almost all the action. But in between blaming the president for our high gas prices and renouncing green energy solutions, Newt Gingrich handed the ultimate gem to the folks over at the San Francisco Chronicle.
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You see, Mr. Gingrich has a history of using our fair city to explain things in a negative light. Just last month, while involved in a public tiff with Nancy Pelosi, the presidential hopeful blasted the "San Francisco environment of strange fantasies and strange understandings of reality."
So the Chronicle's Joe Garofoli and Carla Marinucci decided to take matters into their own hands. Over the weekend, they cornered the former House Speaker and demanded he explain exactly what he meant by his oft-flung phrase, "San Francisco values."
After stammering a bit about the "far left," Gingrich thought it best to illustrate his insult du jour with a story. Back in 1984, in town to stage a "truth squad" protest against the Democratic Convention, the GOP contender had a choice encounter in Union Square.
"Literally, a six-foot-two transvestite comes up to me and hands me an invitation to the 'Exorcism of Jerry Falwell,'" Gingrich explained, adding that the CBS reporter who was interviewing him at the time couldn't believe he didn't stage the exchange.
He went on to tell the Chronicle that he has "never complained about the quality of life" in San Francisco. (Neither have we, Newt, but we prefer our 70-degree Februarys and stunning bay views with a side of cross-dressing.)
Something else the conservative politico had little to complain about? Turns out Jerry Brown has himself a fan.
"Brown is about as clever as anybody in American politics," Gingrich gushed to Marinucci and Garofoli in a separate clip.
Apparently the two used to enjoy meals together when Brown served as mayor of Oakland.
But is the feeling mutual?
Our governor is not usually one to publicly express his feelings about others, but he did offer up criticism of Gingrich's campaign tactics during a recent appearance on Current TV. Discussing the candidate's recent loss in the Florida primary, Brown suggested he might need to adjust his strategy. "If he wants to be a man of ideas, then [he should] throw out those ideas [and] make it a constructive debate,” he said.
Take a look at Gingrich's comments below (first the transvestite experience, followed by praise for Jerry Brown), courtesy of the Chronicle: