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Jerry Brown says Gov. Schwarzenegger 'failed' [Updated]

July 14, 2010 | 11:30 am
Jerry Brown may not be up with any paid TV commercials, but he's been active on the free talk circuit, making his case for California governor with local and national stations alike.

On Wednesday he was in San Diego on the local Fox affiliate's morning program talking about the gubernatorial campaign, the man he hopes to succeed and the woman standing between him and his old Capitol office, Republican nominee Meg Whitman.

Brown compared Whitman to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, another political newcomer who took California's top political job. "He went into Sacramento naive and he failed. And that's the same thing that's going to happen" with Whitman, Brown said.

Brown countered Whitman's claim that he is a fully owned subsidiary of labor unions, saying he has the "freedom and independence at my stage in life to make the tough calls." And he jockeyed with Whitman for position as the "outsider" in the race.

"All her consultants are the same old consultants that were around Schwarzenegger," he said. "She, in many ways, is more of the incumbent than I am. I'm the insurgent. I'm the independent."

[Updated: 1:00 p.m.] Whitman campaign spokeswoman Sarah Pompei dismissed Brown's outsider claims. "These are desperate statements from the most incumbent politician California has ever known,"she said. "Not only is he running for his third term as governor, he’s the son of a Governor and the current Attorney General. He’s not just a central part of the failed culture in Sacramento, he responsible for creating it.”

Brown went on to cite his differences with presidents of his own party and the fact that he gave up his Democratic Party registration while he was mayor of Oakland. Brown also reaffirmed his opposition to Proposition 19, the marijuana legalization measure, and Proposition 8, the ban of same-sex marriage.

-- Anthony York in Sacramento