Yesterday, Governor Newsom delivered his State of the State Address. It was a sad spectacle. CalMatters called it “the kickoff to his don’t-recall-me campaign.”
The State of the State usually takes place at the Capitol, much like the President’s State of the Union. But Newsom broke with tradition and opted for Dodger Stadium. It was a fitting image for his one-man rule, standing alone in an empty sports arena rather than among legislators whose power he’s lawlessly seized.
Legislators were, however, asked to log in via Zoom. We were then instructed to keep our cameras on so the Governor’s team could project hokey images of us applauding from behind our computers. I kept mine off.
Usually, the State of the State is a special occasion. That’s because usually, the Governor of California isn’t a noxious daily presence in our lives. But after a year of monologues inflicted on us by livestream, this address was just one more for the archives. (For a vivid contrast, check out the energy at the Recall Rally at the Capitol I was part of this weekend.)
It took the Associated Press about an hour to throw together a fact check debunking much of what Newsom said. As one example, he perversely bragged that California’s “death rate has remained one of the lowest per capita in the nation.”
In fact, we are middle of the pack despite having the nation’s most severe lockdowns. Seniors in Florida, where everything is open, have done better than in California. Case rates for Florida kids, 99.9 percent of whom are back in school, are lower than in California where 12.8 percent of kids are (last in the nation).
Newsom also used the speech to lash out at the Recall as a “partisan power grab.” He of course knows it’s just the opposite, bringing together people of all party affiliations and all walks of life. That’s why he’s panicking.
Finally, Newsom ominously declared that “we’re not going back to normal.” In a way, he’s right. We’re no longer going to allow our state to be ruined by the corruption that he’s brought to peak levels.
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