Who should run against Trump? How about Hillary Clinton? Again…

Who should run against Trump? How about Hillary Clinton?


It’s time for Hillary Clinton to come out of retirement, lace up the gloves and get back in the ring with President Trump for what would be the biggest political rematch ever.

Call me crazy, but from what I’ve seen so far, Clinton is the only candidate short of Barack Obama who has the brains, the battle-tested brawn and the national presence to take out Trump. And Obama can’t run.

Bernie Sanders was fading even before his heart started acting up. Joe Biden has become Trump’s main talking point in the whole Ukraine-China impeachment mess, which hardly helps him. And he wasn’t exactly running away with it before that.

Elizabeth Warren has a following, but it’s not that much broader than Sanders’. If he drops out, she might pick up some of his votes. But there’s the big question of whether she appeals to anyone besides the furthest left element of the Democratic Party.

Depression over the current field was swirling through my head the other day when I popped into the office of my friend Steven Kay and saw that famous picture of Muhammad Ali standing victorious over Sonny Liston hanging on the wall.

That’s when the light went on: “Rematch!”

Think about it. Hillary is still the smartest of the bunch. She’s also better known than any of the candidates, so she doesn’t need a lot of money.

Most of all, she can take a punch. Heck, she can take a 2-by-4 over the head and stay standing.

Clinton beat Trump by nearly 3 million votes nationally in 2016, but of course lost the Electoral College. That’s not bad for one of the worst-run campaigns ever. You’ve got to think she and the party learned something.

She sure seems loose. Clinton has been making the media rounds to promote the book she wrote with her daughter, Chelsea Clinton, “The Book of Gutsy Women.” She’s come off as funny, smart and natural.

It would be an astounding development if she got into the race. But these past three years have been one nonstop run of astounding. Why stop now?

Semper find: I had the pleasure of dining at one of San Francisco’s most overlooked restaurants the other night when former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa invited me out to the Leatherneck Steakhouse.

The Leatherneck, atop the Marines’ Memorial Club on Sutter Street near the bottom of Nob Hill, has been around almost as long as I have. To be honest, I couldn’t remember the last time I set foot in the place.

What a surprise.

It still has one of the best views of the city skyline you will find, and they had a brother on the piano playing show tunes and light jazz. It was right out of “Green Book.”

I had the chicken. It was as good as what my grandmother made. You could cut it with a fork.

But you’d better get there early. The last dinner sitting is at 8:45.

Movie time: “Official Secrets.” This British thriller is one the best movies of the year. The story revolves around an intelligence analyst who stumbles onto an American blackmail operation targeting U.N. delegates leading up to the Iraq War.

Keira Knightley, Ralph Fiennes and the rest of the cast are great. Well worth the full ticket price.

“Rambo: Last Blood.” The latest chapter in Sylvester Stallone’s best franchise has an over 70-year-old Rambo ready to roll. This time the fight is with human traffickers.

The senior citizen Rambo still has every trick, weapon and martial art skill he’s shown since the opening credits on the first installment. A light movie for a matinee price.

Reopen the Rock: At the Eagle Cafe on Pier 39, a woman asked me whether the former federal prison on Alcatraz can be reopened.

Why would we want to do that? I asked.

“It would be a better and more secure place to put the Trump administration than the White House,” she said.

Want to sound off? Email: [email protected]


Two-term mayor of San Francisco, renowned speaker of the California  Assembly, and widely regarded as the most influential African American politician of the late twentieth century, Willie L. Brown, Jr. has been at the center of California politics, government and civic life for four decades.  His career spans the American presidency from Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush, and he’s worked with every California governor from Pat Brown to Arnold Schwarzenegger. From civil rights to education reform, tax policy, economic development, health care, international trade, domestic partnerships and affirmative action, he’s left his imprimatur on every aspect of politics and public policy in the Golden State. As mayor of California’s most cosmopolitan city, he refurbished and rebuilt the nation’s busiest transit system, pioneered the use of bond measures to build affordable housing, created a model juvenile justice system, and paved the way for a second campus of UCSF to serve as the anchor of a new development that will position the city as a center for the burgeoning field of biotechnology.

Today, he heads the Willie L. Brown Jr. Institute on Politics and Public Service, where he shares his knowledge and skills with a new generation of California leaders.