Just Guess Who Was the Biggest Punchline at Monday Night Live!

Unlike last year, nobody doffed their top for the latest Monday Night Live!, San Jose’s long-running political sketch-fest. Jokes in the 23rd installment aimed squarely below the belt. In addition to the obligatory references to trades lobbyist Neil Struthers’ infamous ball-kicking incident was a crack about his wife, Assemblywoman Nora Campos, burning through staffers. Her opponent in the June primary, incumbent state Sen. Jim Beall, hosted the production, which drew what Working Partnerships USA policy director Bob Brownstein called “a bunch of shit-faced political groupies” to the San Jose Stage Company. In keeping with the running gag of the night, he then quipped about Beall’s “sizeable package.” Political satirist Will Durst provided a comedic interlude on the “circus wrapped inside a gameshow covered in poisonous weasel glitter” that is the American presidential election. There to channel his party’s pink-faced and bloviating nominee was the San Jose City Council’s token Republican and resident boar-slayer Johnny Khamis, reveling in his conservatism. Next year, he noted, he might not be the only GOPer on the council now that Republican Lan Diep trounced Councilman Manh Nguyen in the District 4 primary and two other party members—Dev Davis in D6 and Steve Brown in D2—qualified for November’s runoff. Though absent from the bill, Mayor Sam Liccardo was worked into a few punchlines about his luckless endorsements and bromance with tandem bike buddy Carl Guardino, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group’s CEO. Liccardo-appointed Vice Mayor Rose Herrera, however—not one to shy away from the spotlight—took to the stage with a dancey little flourish and dramatic proclamation to “raise the roof.” Other digs went to Councilman Ash Kalra for making Congressman Mike Honda his designated driver to avoid another DUI, former Mayor Chuck Reed bogarting a joint until people applauded his pension reforms and lame duck Councilman Pierluigi Oliverio continuing his presumed vow of celibacy.

All photos by Greg Ramar.

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