Karabian, Walter: Moscone's advice


Walter Karabian: I was elected in 1966. The same year George was elected to the Senate, I was elected to the Assembly. I went to Sacramento and one of the first issues we confronted was what kind of a Hertz rental automobile would we select. There were some people taking station wagons and unimpressive looking cars, and I wanted a black Buick Riviera with a long fenders and so forth. So the two people I looked to for guidance at the time were George Moscone and Willie Brown. I went to Moscone and I asked George. I said “What do you think I oughta do?” His reply stayed with me all these years. He said “If the kind of car you drive determines whether or not you’re up here, you don’t belong up here.” I thought that was really insightful. Of course Willie Brown, I went to him. Willie was driving a Porsche between San Francisco and Sacramento, and Willie said “Lookit, I’m the wrong guy to ask.” He says “In my district I have to have the fanciest raciest car because” he said “if I don’t look like I’m ripping Whitey off they’ll never reelect me.” So that was my introduction to Moscone early on.


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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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