Kevin Faulconer, Former Mayor Of San Diego, To Challenge Newsom For CA Governor

(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Bradley Devlin General Assignment & Analysis Reporter
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Kevin Faulconer, the former Mayor of San Diego, has announced he is running for California governor, hoping to unseat incumbent Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.

Faulconer finished his second term as mayor of San Diego in December of last year. He went from city councilman to mayor in 2014 during a special election brought on by former Democratic Mayor Bob Filner’s resignation over sexual harassment allegations, Fox News reported. In 2016, Faulconer was reelected with nearly 60% of the vote, according to Ballotpedia. San Diego was the largest city in the nation with a Republican mayor despite being in a deep blue state, according to Fox News.

Faulconer told Fox News that getting elected twice in a Democrat-majority city “speaks volumes” about his leadership.

“The voter registration in San Diego mirrors that of California and I think that’s important. And I’ll be the only candidate with executive experience successfully managing a big city. That’s the type of leadership and experience we want,” Faulconer told Fox News. “People don’t really care about partisanship right now. What people care about is leadership and somebody who is going to fix things and get results,” he added.

Faulconer has also endorsed the recall effort against Gavin Newsom, encouraging Californians to sign it on Twitter. Petitioners have gathered over 1.3 million of the 1.5 million signatures necessary to force a ballot, but the March 17 deadline is fast approaching. If the recall effort can garner another 200,000 signatures, California will vote again in November for the governorship. If it fails, then Faulconer will have to wait until the general election in 2022 to face Newsom in the ballot box. (RELATED: Former San Diego Mayor Says There Is Bipartisan Support To Recall Gov. Newsom)

“I think there’s no doubt that people of all political persuasions are fed up with what they’re seeing out of the governor’s office and that that anger is real and that’s across the state. That’s not limited to any party. And so, I think that the folks want a change,” Faulconer told Fox News.

Previously, Faulconer announced his gubernatorial bid less than a month after he launched a gubernatorial exploratory committee that raised over $1 million since Jan. 4.

In an interview with the Daily Caller News Foundation (DCNF), Faulconer brought attention to Newsom’s COVID-19 policies. “Once again, we’ve had changing metrics here in California. Open and shut. Open and shut,” Faulconer told DCNF. “We’ve had businesses that have been open and shut literally four or five times.” Regarding vaccine distribution, Faulconer said, “The unfortunate reality is that California is last right now in terms of vaccine distribution.”