Bob Filner appears a little unhinged, and frankly unprofessional in a video from local news station NBC 7. He hijacks a news conference by City Attorney Jan Goldsmith to make accusations of unprofessional conduct. His view of the role of the City Attorney appears entirely unbalanced. The City Attorney can’t be fired by the mayor, because he is elected directly by the public. Filner’s tactics are those of a bully or a Congressman, not used to the necessity of working with other members of the team. It seems irrational for the mayor to waste political capital on a personal and public fight with another official with whom he must work in the future. His ego is writing a check he may lack the political capital to afford.
It is clear that Filner is dealing from a weak hand; so he throws a tantrum. But his tantrum is exactly the response of a someone who feels powerless; this makes him look weak. His strategy on the hotel tax is also incoherent. He claims that it is illegal, but then makes a demand for a bigger cut before he will sign off on a contract to use the proceeds to fund a tourism campaign. If the tax is illegal, then the city is not going to get its cut for public safety. And if the tax is legal, then using the money for public safety will make it illegal. I don’t see Filner’s play in this, unless he is just grandstanding. Ultimately, the public judges the mayor on results. Starting vendettas is not typically the way to achieve positive results.
Maybe he just has anger management issues. I’m thinking its only 50/50 that he finishes out his term.