Grapevine: Recall campaign begins against Bob Filner

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine...

(Un)Welcome Back

No public sightings of embattled San Diego Democratic Mayor Bob Filner today. Following a stint in rehab, he was scheduled to be back at work, but it might not be for long.

A recall campaign has begun following allegations of sexual harassment. Recall organizers must gather 102,000 signatures in the next 39 days to take the issue to the voters.

Sixteen women, including former employees, a university dean and a retired Navy rear admiral have made accusations against Filner. Most recently, a 67-year-old great grandmother who volunteers in a city program to help senior citizens, said Filner made repeated sexual advances and urged her to keep quiet last month when others came forward.

Filner has refused to step down despite urging from fellow Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. 

Still Getting Paid

As former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. serves his two-and-a-half year prison term for spending $750,000 of campaign funds on personal, lavish expenses, you might be interested to know that he is eligible for a monthly check from the federal government.

A Chicago TV station reports Jackson is eligible for $8,700 a month in disability payment for bipolar disorder, a condition he never mentioned during his 17-year tenure in Congress. His time as a federal worker also qualifies him for a $45,000-a-year pension once he turns 65.

New Year, New Challenge

Elementary school students in Mexico are headed back to class today to brand-new textbooks chockfull of errors.

Teachers are trying to fix at least 117 mistakes by hand, including misspellings, punctuation problems and geography errors. The mistakes were not noticed until after the 235 million textbooks were printed.

The education secretary in Mexico calls the mistakes "unforgivable, " but he blames his predecessors.