Brown money

Some powerful San Diego law firms lined up last week to contribute to Democratic state attorney general Jerry Brown’s bid for governor. Seltzer Caplan McMahon Vitek, one of the city’s best-connected legal and lobbying outfits, gave $5000 on March 9. So did Andersen Mann Hilbert & Parker and Best Best & Krieger.

Years ago a top Seltzer Caplan client was the late M. Larry Lawrence, owner of the Hotel del Coronado and the county’s most prolific Democratic donor. President Bill Clinton appointed him ambassador to Switzerland, and when he died in 1996 he was awarded a spot at Arlington cemetery. A year later, Lawrence’s body had to be exhumed when it came to light that his record in the merchant marine was phony. According to January lobbyist filings, the firm’s clients now include Fisher Property Group of Palm Beach, Florida, which plans to build a new hotel in Mission Valley; McMillin Land Development; Pardee Homes; Price Charities; and the Thomas Jefferson School of Law.

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