In politics, it’s all about the network. Just ask the Pelosis.
The New York Times takes a very careful shallow dive into Pelosiworld after the Speaker’s husband was busted on a DUI.
The speaker swung into crisis mode. By Sunday afternoon, Larry Kamer, a crisis manager who has a home in Napa and has worked for high-profile clients including Harvard University and Nike, was retained. The family also consulted with John Keker, one of San Francisco’s most prominent defense lawyers, and Lee Houskeeper, a longtime public relations executive for San Francisco political types, including former Mayor Willie Brown.
The New York Times curiously fails to mention the special relationship between the Kekers and the Pelosis.
A Center for Public Integrity report noted however that the Kekers were Pelosi’s top 2 donors.
Pelosi’s top individual contributor, with at least $58,800 in contributions, is John W. Keker. Keker, 66, a nationally recognized San Francisco-based trial lawyer, was chief prosecutor of Marine Lt. Col. Oliver North for his role in the Iran-Contra scandal, and has represented clients ranging from Enron Corp.’s disgraced chief financial officer Andrew Fastow to Google Inc…
A 2006 Chronicle article named Keker as one of Pelosi’s closest friends and advisers, noting that he and other members of Pelosi’s “well-heeled fundraising base” had “helped propel her to power.”
But you’ll never guess who numbers 4 and 5 are and their connection to the DUI.
The night before, May 28, Paul Pelosi, 82, had been in Oakville, among the country’s most exclusive enclaves, leaving a small dinner at the hedgerow-lined estate of Alexander Mehran, a longtime friend and Democratic donor.
Mehran and his wife clock in as the top 4 and 5 donors for Madam Pelosi.
Alexander R. Mehran, Watson’s former husband, is Pelosi’s fifth-ranking donor, with at least $40,950 in contributions. Mehran took over his family’s land business, Sunset Development Co. According to author Joel Garreau, under Mehran’s leadership Sunset made the San Ramon Valley’s Bishop Ranch the core of “one of the biggest Edge Cities in the San Francisco Bay area.” Mehran is, perhaps, best known for hosting a $1,000-a-person fundraiser with then-candidate Barack Obama, at which Obama was recorded by a blogger suggesting blue-collar workers tend to “get bitter [and] cling to guns or religion.”
Mehran is of Iranian descent. His wife, Lucinda B. Watson, is number 4.
With at least $43,000 in contributions to Pelosi’s committees, Lucinda B. Watson ranks fourth. Her grandfather, Thomas J. Watson, founded IBM; her father, Thomas J. Watson Jr., was its CEO and President Carter’s ambassador to the Soviet Union. As a former communication teacher at the Haas School of Business at Berkeley and an heiress to the family fortune and legacy, she has been an active philanthropist. Her website describes her as a published author, career counselor, poet, and “certified healing touch practitioner” in Greenwich, Conn.
Follow the money, see the network.