Every few days, the race for governor in California seems to bring out a new charge. Today, the Los Angeles Times got hold of a voicemail message left by either Jerry Brown or one of his aides in which the speaker refers to Meg Whitman as a wh*re. Below is a video of the message.

California gubernatorial candidates Meg Whitman (L) and Jerry Brown shake hands at the start of their second debate at Fresno State on October 2, 2010. Republican candidate Whitman is blaming her Democratic opponent Brown, for the controversy over an illegal immigrant housekeeper. Early in their second debate Saturday, Whitman responded to a question about the flap by turning to Brown and saying he and his surrogates were to blame. Brown fired back, saying Whitman was evading responsibility: Don't run for governor if you can't stand up on your own two feet .  UPI/Craig Kohlruss/pool Photo via Newscom

This allegation was prompted by a rumor that Whitman, in order to secure the endorsement of police officer’s unions, promised to protect their pension plans in spite of budget woes faced by whoever wins the election.

In September, Brown called the head of the Los Angeles Protective League, Scott Rate, seeking the union’s support, and left a voicemail message. Then, in true geezer fashion, he apparently believed that he had hung up the phone and began speaking with an aide while the message kept recording. So, the answering machine recorded the conversation.

Brown was heard complaining that the union was demanding a pledge to protect their pension in trade for their endorsement. Whitman had made a promise that she wouldn’t cut pensions of public safety employees. So Brown and his aides were discussing a strategy to deal with the quandary that this presented for his team.

Brown could be heard saying, “Do we want to put an ad out? … That I have been warned if I crack down on pensions, I will be — that they’ll go to Whitman, and that’s where they’ll go because they know Whitman will give ‘em, will cut them a deal, but I won’t.”

After the candidate said this, another voice is heard saying, “What about saying that she’s a whore?”

Brown then replies “Well, I’m going to use that. It proves you’ve cut a secret deal to protect the pensions.”
The union has since endorsed Ms. Whitman in the election. It then released copies of the tape to the LA Times. Brown’s campaign apologized to Whitman, whose campaign replied that the term is an insult to all women in California. Here is the video.