SAN FRANCISCO
03/08/2012 08:43 pm ET

Jerry Brown On Shimon Peres: 'It's Good That We Have Old Politicians Around'

Has Governor Jerry Brown changed his name to Governor Jerry-atric?

Our state leader rarely brings attention to his septuagenarian status. During campaign season, it was a known secret that he went on extensive jogs around Lake Merritt and even held the staff record for most pull-ups (yes, the office was equipped).

But the 74-year-old had no problem calling attention to his twilight years when Israeli President Shimon Peres, 88, came to town earlier this month. "It's good that we have old politicians around," he said while greeting Peres at San Francisco's Temple Emanu-El. "There's a lot of these young ones, and they give us a lot of energy, but we need the wisdom of those who've gone through all the struggles."

Wisdom is something Brown has no shortage of, having spent years in academia before following in the footsteps of his political father. He recently put his intelligence to the test in crafting a tax proposal he hopes will appeal to voters across both parties.

And it might be working. A recent survey showed 52 percent of Californians support the plan, which calls for raising the sales tax and income tax on the state's highest earners in an effort to lessen our debt. Since assuming office, the governor has already reduced the budget deficit by more than half.

Brown is also, however, notorious for being less-than-wise with his words at times. (Remember the Nazi gaffe?)

He may soon have yet another reason to put his foot in his mouth: At a recent meeting with the San Francisco Chronicle's editorial board, the governor confidently proclaimed that everyone on death row is guilty--drawing the ire of critics across the city.

Maybe getting older doesn't necessarily make you wiser?

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