The Skinny

The Southwest terminal in Sacramento International Airport was like a
Republican and media theme park. On one Tuesday morning flight Yes on 77’s
Kathy Fairbanks rapped with the Bee’s Dan Weintraub, while Kevin Yamamura
sat nearby. Also on board were reps from the governor’s campaign staff and
Margaret Fortune, fresh off her appearance on CNN the night before …
Fortune was given the task of introducing the governor on stage at the
Beverly Hilton last night. She stood alongside dozens of Republicans
onstage, but announced she was proud to be there “as a woman and as a
Democrat.” We gave her every opportunity to declare her candidacy for the
non-partisan office of state superintendent of public instruction on the
flight to LA, but Fortune demurred. However, more than one Republican
operative in the lobby of the Hilton gave a wry smile when asked about
Fortune’s future political plans … It wasn’t just the political
consultants who figured out how to make a quick buck. Internet access in the
Beverly Hilton is normally free. But not on Election Day. Knowing that the
working press was coming to town, the hotel implemented a new, $10 charge
for WiFi access. Hey, it still beats the $450 they were charging to use the
wireless network inside the ballroom where the governor was holding his
victory party. The Hilton had tried shutting down the lobby WiFi access
altogether until gubernatorial staffer extraordinaire Darrel Ng stepped in
on the reporters’ behalf. After the guv’s big speech Tuesday, a handful of
reporters were seen with laptops literally on their laps, sitting on the
comfy counches of the Hilton frantically working to finish and file their
stories…California Nurses Association President Rose Ann DeMaro made one
final attempt to crash the governor’s party Tuesday. CNA set up shop next to
the Hilton at Trader Vic’s where they held a victory luau, complete with
“roast corporate pig” naturally. (In fact, Schwarzenegger political guru
Mike Murphy inadvertently wandered into the CNA affair, hoping to meet a
friend for a quiet drink, and finding rolling TV cameras instead). After the
coconut shrimp and booze had flowed for a while (neither of which we say Ms.
DeMaro partake in, for the record), she drifted over to the Hilton, only to
be turned away from the governor’s party yet again. As it turns out, they
were having a lot more fun back at Trader Vic’s.

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