DENVER — While America watched the show in the convention hall, Democrats who see themselves as Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's replacement were working overtime backstage, courting supporters and donors for their own campaigns.
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom — the most sought-after of six would-be 2010 California gubernatorial candidates preening in Denver — started the week with a "Rock the Vote Ballot Bash" and an appearance on Time magazine's "Hotshots to Watch" panel.
Former state treasurer and unsuccessful 2006 gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides was excited to promote his new Apollo Alliance for "clean energy and good jobs" at a California delegation breakfast. The event also featured the governors of New York, Ohio and West Virginia. "You know I've cleverly inserted myself in the roll of the governors speakers," he quipped.
Lt. Gov. John Garamendi, who has already declared for the race, directed forums for young Democrats and delivered a passionate speech to the 441-member California delegation on humanity's responsibility to provide "food, shelter, education and health care" for those in need.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, also eyeing the race, fired up a huge crowd at a Latino Leaders Network luncheon featuring New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson.
Former state controller and 2006 gubernatorial candidate Steve Westly savored his role as a California campaign co-chairman and delegation floor leader for Barack Obama.
State superintendent of public instruction and rumored gubernatorial candidate Jack O'Connell was delighted when a breakfast speaking spot suddenly came open before the California delegation.
Missing: California Attorney General and former Gov. Jerry Brown, who's been teasing political pundits and the press about his desire to seek an encore as California's oldest governor. He skipped the convention.
Read the full story at sacbee.com..