The woman at the center of the scandal that rocked San Francisco City Hall six months ago is writing a book. On February 1st, Mayor Gavin Newsom held a news conference to admit he had an affair with one of his employees, Appointments Secretary Ruby Rippey-Tourk. She was also the wife of his close friend and trusted adviser at the time, Alex Tourk. Newsom apologized during that news conference, and four days later, announced he was getting counseling for alcohol problems.
Now, the I-Team has learned Ruby Tourk has written at least two chapters of a self-help book, and is shopping the project to local publishers. Sources say Tourk writes about “hitting rock bottom with Newsom after 20 years of alcoholism and coke use”, and that she hopes to use the mayor’s name recognition to sell books.
In the first two chapters, sources say Tourk “seems to have gone out of her way to not say anything bad about him.” The book, at least so far, is apparently focused on her own conduct and not that of the mayor.
Ruby Tourk sent an e-mail to the I-Team this weekend, declining to comment on the book project: “I hope you understand my decision not to talk right now. I'll let you know if my situation changes...”
The I-Team reached Newsom's chief political adviser Eric Jaye late today. Referring to the book, he said, “I’ll order it. I wouldn’t stand in line for Harry Potter, but I’ll stand in line for that.” Jaye downplayed any possible impact on Gavin Newsom’s campaign for re-election. He said possible contender “Matt Gonzalez and (political consultant) Jack Davis will try to make it an issue, but I don’t think it’s an issue.” Jaye added that Ruby Tourk writing a self-help book is “a laudable thing. … She’s a kind person who is rebuilding her life.”
By the way, Alex Tourk resigned from the Newsom Campaign for Mayor, just before the scandal became public. This evening, he’s holding an open house for his new business, Ground Floor Public Affairs.