- Gavin Newsom told President Biden he was backing his expected 2024 reelection campaign.
- “He not only beat Trump once, I think he can beat him again,” the California governor said of Biden.
- Newsom told Politico’s Jonathan Martin that he “told everyone in the White House” of his decision.
Gov. Gavin Newsom of California, who in recent years has burnished his profile as a future White House contender, told President Joe Biden on election night that he was not planning a 2024 primary challenge, according to Politico’s Jonathan Martin.
Newsom “told everyone in the White House” ranging “from the chief of staff to the first lady” about his intentions, he revealed to Martin — and was firmly behind the president’s expected reelection bid.
During a trip to Washington, DC this past summer, he wanted Ron Klain and Jill Biden to know that he was “all in” for the president’s plans for 2024.
“I’m all in, count me in,” Newsom told the pair, per his conversation with Martin.
“He not only beat Trump once, I think he can beat him again,” the governor said of Biden. “I hope he runs, I’ll enthusiastically support him.”
Newsom, who was easily reelected to a second term as governor this month after winning his 2018 gubernatorial election in a landslide and also defeating a 2021 recall election attempt, has emerged on the national scene as a staunch promoter of the Democratic Party’s values.
This year, Newsom has encouraged Democrats to go bold in their agenda and more effectively communicate with voters about their policies, notably abortion rights. And he has publicly tussled with Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, who could potentially launch a 2024 presidential bid against former President Donald Trump.
But the high-profile nature of Newsom’s remarks led many to believe that he was plotting for a 2024 bid of his own, which frustrated him.
“It’s frustrating because I have so much reverence and respect for not only the president but the vice president is an old friend, for all of those interesting things you guys all love to write about, we’ve known each other for 25 years,” said Newsom, who also mentioned Vice President Kamala Harris, a former California state attorney general and US senator.
Newsom then said he wouldn’t run for president in 2024 even if Biden reverses course and opts out of a reelection bid, but the governor didn’t rule out a 2028 campaign, per the interview with Martin.
The California governor, one of the younger generation leaders within the Democratic Party, has not held back in critiquing the party, which is something that many progressives have been clamoring for — with many grassroots activists frustrated that the party’s leaders aren’t more frequently on the offensive against the GOP.
Newsom declared California “a true freedom state” while speaking with reporters, touting the Golden State compared to states that have passed a raft of abortion restrictions after Roe v. Wade was overturned by the Supreme Court this past summer.
In the midterm elections, California voters overwhelmingly approved a ballot measure that amended the state constitution to guarantee reproductive freedom.