Exclusive — Republican Candidate Kevin Faulconer: Gavin Newsom Failing California on Cost of Living, Crime, Education, Energy, Homelessness, Wildfires

Republican candidate for California Governor Kevin Faulconer speaks during a debate at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021, in Yorba Linda, Calif. California Gov. Gavin Newsom faces a Sept. 14 recall election that could remove him from office. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

Kevin Faulconer, former mayor of San Diego and Republican gubernatorial candidate for California, told Breitbart News that Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA) is failing the Golden State in managing the cost of living, public safety in terms of crime, the quality of education, addressing homelessness, and combating wildfires.

“There is such a sense of energy out here in California, obviously, because this recall is close,” Faulconer said on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Sunday with host Joel Pollak. “There is no doubt that this is a referendum on Gavin Newsom’s failures. That’s what the voters are focused on. Two million voters — Republican, Democrat, and Independent — all signed that recall petition to get us to where we are.”

Popular opposition to Newsom in California is multifaceted, Faulconer determined.

He remarked, “We’re seeing so many folks who are frustrated and angry, and rightfully so. … Homelessness is skyrocketing. We took a dramatically different approach in San Diego, where I did not allow tent encampments on the sidewalk. We have unemployment — the worst in the nation — because of all the lockdowns, and opening and closing that Gavin Newsom did.”

An ongoing exodus of California’s residents to other states is illustrative of government-driven increases to the cost of living, Faulconer held. “California is too expensive,” he stated, “and people are voting with their feet [and leaving].”

Faulconer linked rising rates of crime in California with the “defund the police” campaign pushed by Democrats and the broader left.

“We are in the midst of one of the biggest crime surges in California, and we have a governor that doesn’t even seem to think that that’s a problem,” he said. He added, “Increasingly, families don’t feel safe. Crime is at a 15-year high in California. Murders are up 30 percent. Gavin Newsom enables the defund the police movement and he put up 63,000 felons that are eligible now for parole.”

Newsom’s neglect of forest management drives the state’s wildfires, Faulconer assessed.

“Gavin Newsom has not done what’s necessary [to address wildfires],” he held. “[Newsom will not] provide the funding. He cut $150 million last year from the California wildfire preparedness budget,  and he uses the far-left environmentalist movement as an excuse for not doing what we should have been doing in California, which is brush management, fuel reduction, [and] all the things we need to do for home hardening.”

He added, “He just won’t do it, because he’s attached himself to the far-left. And so, I’ve been very vocal that we need to declare a state of emergency. We need to put California on a war footing when it comes to tackling wildfires, because you can’t keep doing the same thing year after year and expect a different result and that’s all we get from Gavin Newsom.”

According to a poll published last week, 51 percent of likely voters in California would vote to remove incumbent Newsom from office, while 40 percent would vote to retain him.

Newsom will face a recall election on September 14. Californians will be asked if Newsom should be recalled and who should succeed him.

Faulconer remarked, “This recall cuts across all demographics in California. It cuts across all party lines. It was Democrats, Republicans, and Independents who signed in this recall position in unprecedented numbers.”

Newsom’s attempts to frame his embattled governorship as a symptom of former President Donald Trump’s politics is a distraction, Faulconer concluded.

“[Newsom] wants to try to make it all about President Trump in California,” he stated. “It wasn’t Donald Trump that caused all the problems in California. It’s [Newsom’s] failed leadership. Time and time again, what we are seeing is when he grasps to try to change the topic or change the tone. That’s why he’s not being successful.”

Breitbart News Sunday broadcasts live on SiriusXM Patriot 125 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Eastern.

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