Hot torch topic won’t burn officials

Mayor Gavin Newsom said Thursday that city officials cannot handle the Olympic torch when it comes to The City next week.

“We do not actually physically handle it,” Newsom said while appearing on National Public Radio’s “Talk of the Nation.”

The comments came during a response about the passage of Supervisor Chris Daly’s resolution that The City representative who receives the torch do so with “alarm and protest” over human-rights abuses in China and Tibet. Newsom said the human-rights issues were “legitimate fodder” for debate, but the resolution “misses the mark” because city officials cannot handle the flame.

The torch relay will begin at 1 p.m. on Wednesday and the full release of those bearing the torch through The City is expected soon. Thousands are expecting to attend what is thetorch’s only North American stop with many expected to protest.

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