While the recall effort against California Gov. Gavin Newsom is still heating up, Kevin Faulconer, the Mayor of San Diego hopes to accomplish what no other Republican has accomplished since 2003.
He wants to become Governor of one of the bluest states in the entire country.
Faulconer, who has servec as mayor from 2014 up until 2020, has announced his candidacy this week after month of attacks against Newsom over how he is handling the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I believe Californians want a change. As we look at the reality, we all love our state, but what we’re seeing is jobs are fleeing. Our state can’t do the basics.” – he said.
On Monday, the 54 year old released a video online, in which he depicted California as a failed state fraught and worsening quality of life.
About his running, he said that he is running “to make a difference, not to make promises.”
And about Newsom, he said that “He’s failed us, I know we can clean up California.”
More than 1.4 million signatures are collected by volunteers in support of recalling Newsom, And by mid March the campaign needs to have 1.5 million signatures in order to force an election.
But, as of January, only 410,000 signatures have been verified by state officials.
Newsom critics said that he has kept the schools closed for too long and that the unemployment benefits system needs to be fixed.
On Tuesday, a poll was released by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California, where 54% of Californians approve of Newsom. Last year in May, the number was 65%.
Faulconer promises a “California comeback” if he is to be elected over Newsom.
Thad Kousser, political science professor at the University of California, San Diego said that “The recall will happen. Clearly Republicans smell blood, and this is the best shot of flipping a blue state.”
And as for the chances of Faulconer beating Newsom, Kousser said it was a “long shot”
“The Republican party [in California] has been declining steadily, and really became politically irrelevant. You had a Republican party that was clearly putting itself at odds with the diverse electorate of California.” – he claimed.
Faulconer, who was raised in Oxnard, a coastal city north west of Los Angeles, considers himself a conservative, but of a different kind.
He learned Spanish when he was young and had done his best to stay away from the anti-immigrant rhetoric.
He has won 2 terms in a majority Democratic city with a majority Democratic council;
As mayor of San Diego, Faulconer has helped smallen the homelessness of the city with 1.4 million in population.
He did this by moving the people who lived on the streets to the convention center of the city after the hepatitis outbreak.
NBC in San Diego has reported that Faulconer’s office has helped hundreds of homeless people find housing.
“We have to say that it is unacceptable to allow people to live and die on our sidewalks, I believe individuals have a right to shelter.” – said Faulconer.
About his political view, seeing as he is a Republican, he has given the below statement:
“We[conservatives of California] have our own unique brand. I consider myself a California Republican who is fiscally sound, cares about the environment, builds bridges and gets results.”