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Skelton: It should be easier to get rid of this elected official

This has been absurd. There should be an easier way to yank a shamed, politically impotent sexual predator from a mayor's office.

There is, of course.

Bob Filner could have — should have — resigned as San Diego mayor weeks ago. He should have slinked off soon after so many women — at least 16 now — tagged him as a sexual creep.

After the accusations of gropes, slobbering kisses and sexual innuendoes by female city employees, political aides, business execs, college officials, military sexual assault victims and a retired admiral.

All nine members of the San Diego City Council — Democrat and Republican — called on the Democratic mayor to leave. So did Democratic California Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. And House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, whom Filner formerly served with in Congress.

Filner “is now out of rehab,” Pelosi said last week. “He should be out of the mayor's office.” The Democratic National Committee scheduled a vote for today calling on Filner to resign.

So, despite what Filner's few liberal supporters want people to believe, this has not merely been about Republican opportunists and downtown business interests pouncing on a pro-labor Democrat. It's about getting rid of a politician who even his own party agrees is unfit for office.

But Filner stubbornly refused, lately trying to cut an exit deal that involves sticking it to taxpayers for attorney bills and sexual harassment awards.

His departure has been inevitable from the start, only a matter of when and at what price for the city.

Meanwhile, San Diego residents have been without a mayor, whom they pay $100,464 a year. It's good that he went for therapy. But even if he had been at his desk, Filner would have been worthless.

He has no City Hall allies outside his own staff. There's virtually no respect — no ability to persuade and lead a city that is the state's second largest, with a $2.75 billion annual budget.

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