By Robert Haugh
Yesterday, the San Francisco Chronicle broke the story of the 49ers and City legal settlement. But that wasn’t the most dramatic thing that happened.
Councilman Anthony Becker verbally attacked Councilmember Kathy Watanabe and Mayor Lisa Gillmor during the closed-door executive session.
According to the Chronicle’s report, “Becker’s ‘verbal attacks and irrational behavior; accelerated in the closed session — to the point, Watanabe said, where she stood up and walked out of the room.
“That’s when Becker yelled ‘F— you!’ at Watanabe and made an obscene gesture, according to both Gillmor and Watanabe.”
Gillmor told the Chronicle, “I called the police because it was obvious he was having huge anger issues. I’m always very careful if it appears anyone is getting out of control. But he was so emotional and I wanted to protect myself.”
Abusive Behavior Toward a Planning Commissioner
Becker has a pattern of verbally abusing people at City Hall.
Two weeks ago, Becker led the effort to remove Dr. Ron Patrick from the Planning Commission.
Becker interrogated Patrick “like a wannabe prosecutor who never graduated from law school,” a viewer texted Santa Clara News Online.
It’s worth watching the exchange to see Becker’s temperament. At one point, Gillmor admonished Becker for his tone. It lasts about 10 minutes.
Abusive Behavior Toward Residents
On December 7, Santa Clara resident Travis Flora came to the City Council meeting to complain that Becker was abusive on two separate occasions during the November 16, 2021 meeting.
Both times were related to FIFA items, said Flora.
“By retaliating against a member of the public, Councilman Becker violated Santa Clara’s Code of Ethics and Values, injured the good name of the City, and undermined the effectiveness of the City Council,” said Flora.
Flora believes Becker is creating a hostile environment and the Council should consider admonishing or censuring Becker at a future meeting.
Becker immediately moved to dismiss the complaint. He was not a happy camper. You can watch Becker’s negative response here.
Gillmor suggested that Flora and other residents’ complaints about Becker be taken seriously. Gillmor asked that Becker meet with Flora and report back to the Council.
The Council voted unanimously to have Becker meet with Flora and other residents who he’s offended and report back. Becker has never reported back on his meetings.
Abusive Behavior Toward Everybody He Can Think Of
But just one week after that meeting, Becker was back to his usual self.
On December 14, Becker attacked Santa Clara News Online, residents who have written opinion pieces, Gillmor and City staff.
One resident texted that “he’s like a bad mall Santa. I think he’s making a list and checking it twice.”
If you want to watch his tirade, you can see it here. Becker was not a happy camper and was not in a cheery holiday mood.
This is a developing story. According to the Chronicle, there’s likely to be an investigation into the current incident involving Becker’s abusive behavior toward Watanabe and Gillmor.