Women set their sights on top job in California

FEMALE politicians in the United States, savouring their best election year yet, expect to seize another important political trophy in California. The country's most populous state could soon be governed by a woman.

Their latest potential champion is of vintage political stock. She is Kathleen Brown, the daughter of Edmund 'Pat' Brown and sister of Jerry 'Moonbeam' Brown - the maverick Democratic presidential candidate. If elected, she would be the third Brown in four decades to govern California, a job regarded as a springboard for a run at the White House.

Her success would be another victory for women nationwide, who are celebrating the acquisition of several top jobs in the Clinton administration and a stack of new seats in Congress. And it would be still more of a triumph at state level, following the election of women - Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer - to California's two Senate seats.

In the past two months Ms Brown, at present the state treasurer, has been raising large sums of money. Although she has not formally declared her intentions, there is little doubt in political circles that she will go for, and get, the Democratic nomination for the state's top political job, which is up for election in 1994.

As things stand, she has an excellent chance of victory. She is bright, moderate and politically astute; she performs well on television; and is well connected in Wall Street and Hollywood, important sources of campaign funds. Most importantly, unlike her eccentric brother, she is well- liked in the Democratic Party. Her father, a towering figure in Californian politics who was governor during the boom years of 1958 to 1966, has described her as the 'best politician in the family'.

Jerry Brown, who served two terms as governor, from 1974 to 1982, could be a potential embarrassment to her, because of his reputation for whackiness. He has taken to the wilderness for a period of contemplation, but his political career is unlikely to be over.

His sister's position is greatly assisted by the miserable fortunes of California's governor, Pete Wilson, a Republican, who is still trying to recover after a disastrous election year. So far his governorship has been spent surviving a series of crises. These include the state's dollars 11bn ( pounds 7bn) budget deficit, the Los Angeles riots, several sizeable earthquakes, a six-year drought, a plague of medfly, and a series of huge forest fires.

Matters have been made worse by a recession which, according to some economists, may not begin to ease until 1994. Mr Wilson is also deeply disliked by a large chunk of the Republican right who resent his pro-choice position on abortion and believe he is soft on homosexuals.

But these are early days. The last time California voted for a Democratic president was in 1964, when it elected Lyndon Johnson. Two years later, a Republican won the governor's race - a former 'B-movie' actor who later spent eight years in the White House.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Production Administrator

£17000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the leading and fastest ...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Sunroom / Conservatory / Extension Designers

£16000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Planning Assistant

£16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will be working for one of the count...

Recruitment Genius: Purchase Ledger Administrator

£5120 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will be working for one of the countr...

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence