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Monday, April 11, 2005

Aguirre: The Wrath Of An Attorney

Last week I wrote about the conflict that boiled over at a City Council meeting between San Diego City Attorney Mike Aguirre and the District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis over who should prosecute misdemeanors in the City of San Diego. I speculated that Mayor Dick Murphy might be behind the latest brouhaha, and that if he wasn't, it would be an advantageous political tactic to push Aguirre's buttons, which would cause him to lose control, thereby discrediting himself and making Murphy look really good in comparison. This article suggests such a strategy is in play and points to former Murphy chief of staff as the orchestrator, a role he denies.

A side benefit of the strategy is how it puts Murphy's main political rival Donna Frye in the corner with Aguirre. Frye generally supports Aguirre and whenever there is a conflict between him and the mayor or somebody else Frye can be counted on for a supportive quote.

In this instance, she blasts Dumanis for not giving Aguirre a heads up before Dumanis spoke to the City Council about taking over misdemeanor prosecutions from Aguirre. As she put it, "I'm seriously thinking of sending her a book on etiquette. That was conduct unbecoming an elected official, especially somebody that was a judge. Guess what? She may not use my name for her re-election and I will not be attending her fundraiser." She's going to send the DA a book on etiquette? That sounds like a very juvenile comment for an elected official to make.

Murphy reaps a political advantage whenever Frye jumps on Aguirre's self-burning ship because she ends up looking nearly as bad as Aguirre does. And in comparison, Murphy looks like the adult that neither Frye nor Aguirre appear to be.

-tdr

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