As they stood a few hundred yards from Fullerton City Hall this afternoon, outspoken radio hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou weren't shy about their disdain for three local politicians — Mayor F. Richard Jones, Mayor Pro Tem Don Bankhead and Councilman Pat McKinley.
Kobylt and Chiampou, who host KFI's “John and Ken Show,” came to Fullerton to support the efforts to recall Jones, McKinley and Bankhead, who they described during today's live broadcast as “arrogant and obnoxious,” “sociopathic” and “goons.”
The three politicians have received sharp criticism for their handling of the city since Kelly Thomas, a homeless man with schizophrenia, was beaten to death by police officers.
As frustration with their leadership mounted, businessman and blogger Tony Bushala spearheaded an effort last month to recall the three officials. Bushala says they still have about 120 days to get the 10,554 signatures — or fifteen percent of the voting population — that they need to put the recall on a ballot. He says he thinks the recall vote will end up on the primary ballot in June.
Most of the 150 or so people at the event today said it was the leaders' inaction that spurred their support of the recall.
For Greg Sebourn, however, the frustration runs deeper. It's not just their inaction, but also a “fiscal lack of common sense” that frustrates him. “They ignore the roads and build a huge new senior center, when we already have a perfectly good one.”
Throughout the four-hour event, Kobylt and Chiampou rehashed many details of the Thomas case and interviewed Bushala, Thompson and both of Thomas' parents.
As Ron Thomas, Kelly's father, recounted different alleged transgressions of the councilmen, Kobylt and Chiampou got riled up. On several occasions, Thomas told them, Jones made minimizing comments about the long public comment section at council meetings. “[Jones] said things like, 'Now we're gonna limit this, cause we have important business to tend to,'' Thomas said. Kobylt shock his head sharply from side to side and said, “Wait, wait, hold on, it's just really hard to digest.”
Although they took a few jabs at other things they hate, like the Dream Act and “lazy journalists,” the duo didn't stray much from the topic at hand: bashing the trio of elected officials.
And, they had fun doing it. If shortened, the mayor's name is F. Dick Jones. The duo, of course, loved the crude connotation and repeated phrase over and over and even started calling the other two “F. Don Bankhead” and “F. Pat McKinley.”
Kobylt and Chiampou squeezed in some time to act like celebrities, too. A couple of dudes in suits and sunglasses escorted them through the crowd on occasion and they signed autographs throughout the show. As Kobylt handed a fan an autographed picture, he reminded her of its worth. “These are collector's items.”