MAYOR Frank Jordan (D) of San Francisco talked with the Monitor last week about his tumultuous term in office. Excerpts follow:
On San Francisco politics:
"The political arena is not a pleasant one. It's a brutal game where perception is more important than reality. I don't like it at all. I fight it and resist it every day."
On political enemies:
"They seem to take openness and honesty for weakness but they shouldn't. I think the difference is that I never do what I think is politically right for me, I do what is best for the city and that is not understood. I don't care about political posturing."
On solving current budget problems:
"I've got a package that no one is going to like because it hits all sides equally - I'm laying people off, raising taxes, freezing salaries, reopening contract talks. A good politician tries to protect some constituency. I haven't done that."
On bad press:
"They seem to be more interested in what someone I fired said or some unsubstantiated tip that my wife is using my cellular phone. Why don't they follow me out into the neighborhoods where I'm producing the news? "