GRAY DAVIS UPDATE: This column by Daniel Weintraub of the Sacramento Bee says that Davis’s loss of the COPS endorsement to Simon (see below) isn’t as big a deal as it seems to be. Weintraub has some interesting points on these endorsements in general:

The Davis campaign reacted to the endorsement by bashing COPS as a fraud. “Even when they were with us,” sneered campaign spokesman Roger Salazar, “they’ve never been more than what they are today, which is a telemarketing organization.”

But that never stopped Davis from using the group for his own political cover, or from scrambling furiously to try to keep their endorsement from going to his rival. His campaign manager, Garry South, tried to have Holden fired after hearing that he was agitating for Simon.

The furor over COPS shows that endorsements are often more about the goals of the backers than the performance of the candidate. In this case those goals were petty and personal in the extreme. But the lesson probably applies across the board.

Thanks to Insta-reader Mike Daley.