The Los Angeles Times‘ Tony Perry profiled San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders today, using the mayor’s performance during the wildfires as the jumping off point.

The gist: Some people (read: Bob Kittle) are comparing the mayor’s performance to that of Mayor Rudy Giuliani on Sept. 11. That’s something Perry says could prove a boost come election time, considering the other problems the mayor’s encountered.

Perry also includes this interesting assessment of Sanders:

With a thickening waistline, an often raspy voice and a comb-over, the 57-year-old Sanders hardly qualifies as a modern telegenic politician. His demeanor is so much more low-key than take-charge that many new arrivals to the city are surprised to learn he was a police officer for 26 years.

But people respond to his essential earnestness, which made him an immensely popular police chief before he retired in 1999 to run the local United Way.

“This mayor is a good person, a caring person, and he’s able to convey that,” Mitrovich said.

ANDREW DONOHUE

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