Bronstein, Phil: Moscone administration


Phil Bronstein: I think that George’s, probably his entire administration of two years, but certainly at the beginning it was a function of herding cats. Suddenly you had turned on the lights and opened the doors and invited all these people who had no voice in government and no power, and suddenly they’re all in City Hall. I think there was pretty early on the kind of thing that we’ve seen with the Obama administration to a certain extent where there was a high expectation among certain communities. That “Okay, now we have the power.” And that included the Gay community which did have a fair amount of power particularly after district elections. I think that you had all the unhappiness that evolved out of the election campaign and the other half of the city, the western half and downtown half of the city maybe, sort of beating on his head. Again, from a day to day perspective, I didn’t cover City Hall so it’s hard for me to sorta tell you what the intricacies and logistics and details were, but it struck me that George was having a hell of a time trying to corral all these personalities and strong personalities. Many of them diverging and conflicting of each other. How do you make that happen? I think he was a very good legislator, and very good legislators have not necessarily proven to be good administrators, and that’s true probably everywhere, but certainly in San Francisco. I think he was struggling with that.


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The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.

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Holt-Atherton Special Collections and Archives, University of the Pacific Library

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