Gavin Newsom, the dangerous Democratic governor of California

Republicans need to prepare for when the governor of California decides to take over the White House. Yes, he has the hair of NBA icon Pat Riley. Yes, enough signatures were collected to start a recall campaign against him last year. Yes, the middle class is fleeing California. Yes, the cities of the state are becoming a picture of the ultra-rich and the super-poor, along the lines of Charles Dickens.

But Gavin Newsom is still dangerous and conservatives would be foolish to discard his perspectives. of an (even) higher position, just because on the other side of the country we have a promising republican name.

When the draft decision of Judge Samuel Alito overturning Roe v . Wade leaked to the press, Newsom asked a question that many Democrats doubted: “Where is my party? Where is the Democratic Party? Why aren’t we addressing this?”

President Biden was not named; it didn’t even have to be. Speculation that the governor of California might try to lead his party in 2024 has stirred the White House. Newsom then decided to add fuel to the fire by making announcements in Florida led by Republican Ron DeSantis.

Newsom’s question – “Where is my party?” — has shown that he has keen political instincts. Whether because the executive power has become very lax lately or because its representatives have not managed to fully control it, there has been a strong feeling since 15 that the party outside the White House it’s that it has initiative and can run the game.

What Republicans call “wokeness” (sealing, identity) grew under Donald Trump’s administration in almost all formal and informal institutions But since Biden took the White House, conservative activists have been in the spotlight. Conservative governors have come up with innovative answers to tough political challenges, and now the Supreme Court has given the right big wins over gun ownership and restraint. Newsom expressed the sentiment that many partisan Democrats share: that they are leaderless and under siege on all sides.

This sense of being aimless has dogged Democrats for months at a time As Bi’s approval rating den decreases. Reflecting this discontent among younger, progressive voters, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez went so far as to say that if Biden runs again as the Democratic candidate, she will have to rethink her support for reelection.

That’s where Newsom comes in. For all the obvious flaws with the California governance model, it has a ready argument: I’m young, I’m competent, and I’m really progressive. For more than half a century, California represented the American future. And Newsom can advertise what he often calls “the largest, most diverse state of the world’s most diverse democracy.”

California’s economy is booming and the state has huge surpluses. of revenue. Newsom plans to use these proceeds to send checks to Californians to help them deal with inflation, distributing $9.5 billion to 15 millions of residents. The scheme may actually exacerbate the problem it purports to solve, but it clearly doesn’t care.

If California were a country, it would be economically competitive with Germany, a nation with more than twice its population. Newsom can argue that it already leads % of American citizens and almost 15% of the economy from the country. He can also use the fact that, under him, California has managed to keep the economy buoyant without abandoning its heavy environmental regulations. In other words, Newsom can present himself as a complete package of Democrats: someone capable of building a green, progressive, diverse and wealthy future – the future that Democrats desperately want for the entire country.

Newsom also has a kind of charisma that is difficult to describe for conservatives who are genuinely repulsed by him, but which attracts important blocks of voters. While it appears that Latinos across the country are starting to turn to Republicans, in California they are becoming increasingly attached to Newsom.

One study showed that Biden won over Latino voters. state by a margin of three to one in 2020. But in the recall Government of California election in 2021, Newsom won over Latino voters in Los Angeles by a ratio of four. for one.

American politics calls for a generational change, for some kind of renewal. Ron DeSantis cannot respond to that outcry just yet because he is still fighting for re-election in Florida. Which means that, until November, Newsom will be free to promote himself. He is brazen, ambitious and will have access to large sums of money to run nationally if he chooses to do so. Republicans need to prepare.

© 2022 National Review. Published with permission. Original in English.
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