Reading between the lines

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, famously told the governor to “kiss my gay ass” at a Democratic fundraiser last month. Two days later, the governor responded in the veto message of one of Ammiano’s bills.

Earlier in the month, the San Francisco Democrat was at a boisterous Democratic fund-raiser when Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger stopped by to say hello. The governor, a guest of former Mayor Willie Brown, said a few words of greeting and extolled the virtues of bipartisanship. But Democrats, unhappy with the governor in their midst, booed loudly.

“Kiss my gay ass!” Ammiano shouted out.

Schwarzenegger smiled and left. But he was plotting his move.

On Oct. 11, the governor vetoed Ammiano’s AB 1176, with a seemingly innocuous and vague veto message.


Innocent enough. But when read on the governor’s Web site, the first letter of the last two paragraphs line up to spell out a clear, if crude message.




The apparent coded message was first reported in the San Francisco Bay Guardian . You can see the PDF on the governor’s Web site.  


Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear said the hidden message was a "strange coincidence." 


"When you veto so many bills, something like this is bound to happen," he said with a straight face.


McLear noted the first lines of other veto messages spell out things like "soap,” “poet” and "bad tap." Presumably that's not a commentary on any member's hygiene, literary skill or dancing prowess.


Of the eight Ammiano bills that reached the governor’s desk, two were signed and six were vetoed.

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