Van Jones For Mayor of Oakland?

Speculation in Monday’s SF Chronicle column by Matier & Ross.

Oaktown mayoral round: How about recently ousted White House environmental adviser and GOP basher Van Jones running for mayor of Oakland?

“There are some in the progressive black community who have spoken to him about the possibility,” City Councilman Larry Reid said.

Local attorney Clinton Killian – who was among the early backers of Ron Dellums – wrote in a recent online opinion piece that “there are many influential progressives who would support Mr. Jones’ run.” [Teddy’s note: link here]

The Van bandwagon appears to be prompted by three concerns: former City Manager Robert Bobb‘s decision to stay in Detroit, fears that Councilwoman Jean Quan won’t raise enough money to be viable, and the growing realization that that if former state Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata wins, Oakland’s left could be out in the cold.

A new poll commissioned by the Jobs and Housing Coalition, a group of local businesses, shows that Perata is the candidate to beat – with about a 60 percent favorability rating and high name recognition.

So far, Jones is keeping mum on a possible run, though he hasn’t discouraged speculation. His publicist, Marni Tomljanovic, told us that Jones was overseas last week and “not scheduling media engagements at this time.”

If Jones opts not to become the great mayoral hope?

Well, word is some are already urging Dellums to hang tough and seek another term – which may also explain why his office has stepped out of the shadows with a number of high-profile events lately dealing with quality-of-life issues.

Perata kicked off his mayoral campaign Saturday with about 100 supporters on a neighborhood walk through the Glenview area.

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