Just how cheap is Jerry Brown?


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For Jerry Brown, it seems no expense is too small to scrimp on.

He bases his gubernatorial operations in a building he partly owns, getting a cut on rent. He’s got a friend donating janitorial services. He even found a way to wiggle out of paying for his own election night party.


Through June 30, the Democratic attorney general and party nominee for governor has spent only $377,333.26, less than many candidates for state Assembly and less than GOP rival Meg Whitman was spending per day by early summer.

Whitman, a billionaire from her days running EBay, has spent nearly $100 million since launching her campaign. Brown, meanwhile, has set up his campaign headquarters in a downtown Oakland building that he is a part owner of to save precious rent money.

He reports the discounted office space as an gift from himself to the campaign worth $3,000 per month. No cost is too small to avoid, even keeping the office clean. Marcus Clark, a onetime roommate from Brown’s communal living days in Oakland, has donated $3,600 worth of janitorial services to the campaign this year. Clark is the vice president of a building maintenance company.

Brown even wiggled out of paying for most his own primary night election party. The Anschutz Entertainment Group, owner of Staples Center, picked up $22,432.47 of the tab for the affair at Club Nokia. There was no free food in the main venue for attendees; it was a cash bar.

Sterling Clifford, a Brown spokesman, said AEG picked up the “overwhelming majority” of the bill, reported as an in-kind gift, though the campaign did pay for some “odds and ends.”

-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento