Bob Filner's newest accuser: A great-grandmother

This news comes packaged with an extra frisson of shamefulness because of her age, but it really shouldn’t. The implication is that it’s kinda sorta understandable that he was coming on to younger women whereas coming on to a great-granny is capital-w Weird. I think that misses the point of what this guy is, allegedly, guilty of. He wasn’t “coming on” to people, like a random person at a bar might do; he was using his status as mayor to pressure women, supposedly in great volume and sometimes with unwanted physical contact, who worked for him and with him into socializing with him. Given the freakish tenacity with which he’s clung to his office, it seems like the power stroke he got from all of this was at least as exciting as the prospect of sex. In which case, why wouldn’t he target a great-grandmother? Every woman he met was potentially at risk, I’d bet, but especially the ones who had official city business with his lordship, the mayor.

A great-grandmother will hold a news conference with attorney Gloria Allred early Thursday afternoon, alleging she is a sexual harassment victim of Mayor Bob Filner.

A news release stated the senior citizen was the “victim of continuous inappropriate sexual advances by the Mayor while trying to do her job at City Hall.”…

The release also said Allred was the woman’s attorney, but it was not yet clear on if the woman would be filing a lawsuit against Filner. If so, that would be the second sexual harassment lawsuit against the mayor.

By the way, remember the mysterious city investigation into Filner’s hotel credit-card receipts, none of which seemed large enough to suggest serious wrongdoing? Here’s the likely reason why cops and prosecutors are so interested in that. It’s their ticket to ousting him from office without needing a recall:

According to the memo, the city council asked the city attorney to look at the charter and determine if there is a process on how to impeach elected officers. While there is no such provision, the City Council can still remove someone from office under Section 108 of the charter, the memo stated.

Charter Section 108 says that “every City officer who willfully approves or allows unauthorized payments from City treasury is subject to removal from office,” according to the memo.

The memo goes on to say that “the Mayor is an ‘officer’ under the Charter and that the City Council may, behind a closed session, file a ‘declatory relief action to enforce Section 108 in court.’

Filner’s under suspicion of charging $550 to his city credit card for eight separate, unknown transactions at a San Diego hotel, which may or may not have been dinners with women he harassed into meeting with him. Not a huge amount by the standards of financial impropriety among politicians, but so what? If the city charter says you can bounce someone from office for willfully approving unauthorized taxpayer dollars, in theory one dollar is enough. That, maybe, is how they finally get this guy out — the city council can point to the receipts and seek a declaratory judgment in court that the payments were unauthorized and then Filner’s done. There’s not a Democrat in California or D.C. at this point, I’d imagine, who’d object.

Via Ace, if you missed it yesterday, read The Atlantic’s account of three separate women officials warning the head of the city’s Democratic Party of stories about Filner all the way back in 2011. The party thought he was their best bet to win the mayoral race; apparently they also thought this sort of thing would stay under the radar during his term if elected. And now here we are.