By SEAN QUINTAL
Since Republicans haven’t won a statewide election in California for 15 years, it’s unsurprising to watch their opportunistic antics to justify a recall of a popular (53% approval) Democratic governor. In tortured attempts to substantiate the case for why Gavin Newsom warrants being recalled, the Trump-supporting zealots who pushed the signature gathering typically resort to various acts of dishonesty, from simple lies to outlandish fabrications. So in the interest of clarity and simplicity, its useful to consider some basic facts about how California is thriving under Newsom’s gubernatorial leadership. To wit:
Under Newson, California is a roaring economic success.
Newsom is the governor of a state that is the envy not just of the US, but of the globe. As Matthew Winkler wrote for Bloomberg this summer, “California has no peers among developed economies for expanding GDP, creating jobs, raising household income, manufacturing growth, investment in innovation, producing clean energy and (generating) unprecedented wealth through stocks and bonds.”
Moreover, consider the following facts:
California is the world’s 5th largest economy. Under Newsom’s governance, over the last five years, California’s economic growth has outperformed the economies of the United States, Japan and Germany, surpassed only by China
Gavin Newsom this year disbursed to Californians the biggest state tax rebate in American history
The budget surplus under Newson stands at a record $80 billion
1.3 million Californians were added to payrolls this year, far surpassing the jobs created in the next two states, Texas and New York
Household income in California increased $164 billion, as much as the increases in Texas, Florida and Pennsylvania combined
California’s GDP the last five years increased 21%; compare that to the #2 state New York (14%), and the #3 state Texas (12%)
Newsom and the Democratic legislature have made enormous progress to improve the lives of Californians.
Newsom and the legislature have doubled the size of both California’s Earned Income Tax Credit, and the Young Child Tax Credit.
The Governor has accomplished expanding paid family leave from 6 weeks to 12 weeks. Further, Newsom and the Democrats have added 200,000 childcare slots, and have spent $250 million to retrofit and improve childcare centers.
Newsom successfully reduced childhood hunger, because now all public school students in the state may receive two free meals a day. Additionally, Newsom and the Democrats have funded summer- and after-school for 2 million kids. And, by 2025, the State will have in place a full year of transitional kindergarten for all four-year-old’s.
Newsom has invested $12 billion over two years in permanent residences and mental health care for the unhoused in California
With Newsom as Gov., California has managed the pandemic more successfully than any large state.
As of Sept. 1, 2021, California reports a total of 167 deaths per 100,000 residents. Compare that figure to those of the next two largest states, which both have Republican governors: 207 deaths per 100K in Florida, and 196 per every 100K people in Texas. While those differences might not appear significant, they prove that 10,000 more Californians would be dead if the state had the same rate as Texas.
The sharp contrasts in California’s favor are attributable, in large part, to Newsom’s leadership. California has urged all residents, even those fully vaccinated, to wear masks in indoor public spaces. In California, masks are required in all K-12 schools.
Florida and Texas, on the other hand, are suffering under Republican governors who have largely banned schools and municipal governments from establishing mask mandates. Consequently, Florida is in the grips of its deadliest wave of the pandemic yet, while its governor threatens to withhold funding from school who require masks. Texas’ governor vows to punish local governments and school districts who defy his mask ban, even as he begs other states for medical personnel, because Texas’ hospital emergency rooms are having to turn away patients due to over-capacity
Obviously, it’s easy to refute the falsehoods parroted by the Trump true-believers who fomented the recall, and by the cynical establishment Republicans who are trying to exploit a rare opportunity to avoid being humiliated again in a statewide defeat. But the facts also show the enormous risk to Californians if they abandon the responsible stewardship of Newsom, who has overseen such demonstrable, quantifiable success during his tenure.
Californians want to keep moving forward with optimism, and not backslide into bitter anger and recrimination. That’s why it appears California’s voters will reject this desperate attempt by the GOP to hijack the electoral process. Please join them in protecting our state’s future.
Due to the persistent peril posed by the Delta variant, our October meeting will be conducted over Zoom on Wednesday Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. Please find the link to join the meeting on our website www.lamesafoothillsdemocraticclub.com.
— Sean Quintal writes on behalf of the La Mess Foothills Democratic Club.