Newsom’s Approach To Politics Shows White House Potential

Keep an eye on the California governor, if not for 2024, then 2028.

What's happening: California Gov. Gavin Newsom's term is up in 2027. Many expected him to aim for the presidency in 2024, especially given the uncertainty surrounded President Joe Biden’s chances for reelection. Newsom says he won't challenge Biden, but some are skeptical.

State of play: Biden's age and embarrassing verbal stumbles are a concern. Vice President Kamala Harris isn’t winning many fans either. If things go south, Democrats will need a new face. Newsom seems to be positioning himself for that role.

  • The signs: Newsom went on Fox News this week to clash with GOP views and seemed to enjoy the national spotlight. He's even set to debate Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a presidential hopeful, and has spent big bucks on anti-DeSantis ads in Florida.

There’s more: California has seen a rise in crime and homelessness under Newsom's progressive reign. He usually brushes it off, blaming it on broader societal issues in line with his Democratic views. But lately, he's changing his tune to sound more like his critics on the right.

  • On the issues: Newsom is now focusing on San Francisco's crime rates, using highway patrol to protect stores in some cities., and sending the National Guard to fight fentanyl trafficking. He criticized a court that forbade clearing out homeless camps as well.

The takeaway: Newsom's still no moderate, as shown by his push for transgender ideology in schools. But his skill in stepping away from typical Democratic positions when it suits — shape-shifting his views — makes him a strong player.