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Brown addresses age questions with fitness display

March 3, 2010 |  5:11 pm

Jerry Brown would be 72 when he became governor again, should he win in November, and on the day after entering the race, he tried to settle questions about his age with a display of physical prowess.

Brown, making jokes about the memories of reporters younger than he, said in an interview at his Oakland campaign headquarters Wednesday that voters should not worry about his fitness.

"I'm pretty darn healthy," he said.

"So I'm in good shape. I can do 11 chin-ups. Can you do 11 chin-ups on that bar right now?" he asked his 38-year-old interviewer, motioning to a nearby bar in the converted warehouse.

After the interview had concluded, the reporter took him up on the challenge, tiring at 6½ chin-ups.

Then it was Brown's turn. In a dress shirt and suit pants, he did 12.

"I've been working out," he said.

"Meg Whitman … Meg Whitman," Brown said, referring to a Republican candidate he may face. But he did not finish the thought.

-- Michael Rothfeld in Oakland

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