Despite losing support from voters during the pandemic for implementing strict pandemic measures in the last nearly three years, California Gov. Gavin Newsom has managed to recover and earn the support of Californian voters. Now, Newsom is expected to easily win reelection in November despite being the nation’s first governor to implement the state-at-home pandemic measure.
Newsom is challenged by Republican state Sen. Brian Dahle who succeeded in raising only a little less than $1 million, which isn’t enough to run statewide TV ads in the nation’s most populous state, home to some of the country’s most expensive media markets.
Expectedly, this gave Newsom a huge advantage, even though he was considered a winner even before Dahle faced the reality and the funding shortage.
On Sunday, October 23, Dahle had the only opportunity to face Newsom face to-face before the voting ends on November 8. Nonetheless, the given opportunity is expected to change almost nothing in the final results.
What viewers and political analysts found most interesting during the one-hour-long face to face “confrontation” was Newsom’s promise that he would finish the full four-year term and he won’t run for president in case current president Joe Biden decides not to seek second term.
Republican supporters and Republican state Sen. Brian Dahle have been pushing this narrative for months now, even though Newsom has never confirmed that he is actually interested in the presidential seat. Taking into consideration the fact that Dahle wasn’t able to run an aggressive ad campaign due to a lack of funding, Newsome simply decided to spend money on ads challenging Republican leaders in Florida and Texas—potential opponents in a presidential election.
“Everyday Californians understand what is happening here in California and the governor is focused on running for president,” Dahle said during a debate that was broadcast live on the radio by KQED News. Newsome confirmed that he is committed to serving the full four-year term if re-elected once asked by the co-moderator Marisa Lagos if the plans to serve as governor full term.
The debate aired again Sunday night on KQED Public Television.