Caitlyn Jenner filed paperwork April 23 to run for governor of California and since then, she’s managed to appeal to the likes of top Republicans nationwide — perhaps with better messaging than more mainstream candidates.
An Olympic gold medalist and transgender rights activist, Jenner released a well-received campaign ad that was praised by a number of Republicans. In the ad, Jenner slammed “career politicians” and their policies that have “destroyed that dream.”
“The government is now involved in every part of our lives. They’ve taken our money, our jobs, and our freedom,” the ad said.
Jenner went on to say she was ready to bring relief for the “business owners who were forced to shut down. For the pastors who are not able to be with their congregation. For the family who lost their home in a fire, for an entire generation of students who lost a year of education.”
While Jenner might be a surprising candidate for the standard Republican voter as a transgender woman, Jenner provides a unique candidate option for Republican and Democratic voters fed up with Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. Most importantly for national politics, however, Jenner seems to be effective at communicating the most important, commonsense policy positions that brought former President Donald Trump such success. (RELATED: Caitlyn Jenner Says US In Desperate Need Of A Border Wall)
Republicans have favored recalling Newsom, with a March poll finding 86% of Republicans supported recalling Newsom while 66% of Democrats supported Newsom. But when it came time to decide whether Newsom should be re-elected in 2022 or whether “it is time for someone new,” 58.3% of voters believed it was “time for someone new.”
Radio host Larry O’Connor expressed a sentiment shared among some Republicans that Jenner’s message resonated with a number of Republicans and fed-up voters even if Jenner personally wasn’t the ideal candidate.
“Set aside the messenger for a moment. This is, without a doubt, the perfect message. This is how Gavin Newsom goes down. This is how California saves itself. Not sure Jenner is the right candidate, but this ad nails it.”
Commentator Bethany Mandel called it a “powerful ad,” saying Jenner “is going to be a force to contend with.”
Republicans have overall taken a relatively conservative stance on the issue of transgenderism, with a slew of Republican governors signing legislation banning transgender athletes from competing on female sports teams. Jenner — who came out as a transgender woman in a 2015 Vanity Fair cover story — also came out against transgender athletes competing on female sports teams.
Jenner said it’s a “question of fairness” when asked about the issue by TMZ.
“That’s why I oppose biological boys who are trans competing in girls sports in school. It just isn’t fair, and we have to protect girls sports in our schools.” Jenner later reiterated her stance in a tweet.
I didn’t expect to get asked this on my Saturday morning coffee run, but I’m clear about where I stand. It’s an issue of fairness and we need to protect girls’ sports in our schools.https://t.co/YODLDQ3csP
— Caitlyn Jenner (@Caitlyn_Jenner) May 1, 2021
While Jenner’s identity doesn’t necessarily jive with mainstream Republicans, her no-nonsense, MAGA-inspired policies could be enough to override an opposition she may face as a transgender woman.
Jenner is in a rather opportune position as Newsom faces pressure for his coronavirus lockdowns that shuttered hundreds of small businesses. The state has also opted to have remote learning despite science pointing to it being safe for students to return the classroom.
Newsom also shuttered hundreds of restaurants but was later caught dining indoors at a restaurant without a mask and with a large group of people despite state guidelines ordering otherwise. Newsom was later sued by more than 50 wineries and restaurants throughout the Napa and Sonoma counties for banning indoor dining.
The state also admitted to hiding certain coronavirus data because they feared the data would “mislead” the public.
In May of 2020, the state also had a massive budget deficit of $54.3 billion, with many blaming Newsom’s stay-at-home orders from March as a contributing factor.
Jenner is campaigning heavily on bringing economic relief.
“Going forward, our strategy must be smart, balanced, and consistent with the best scientific data,” Jenner said. “I will listen to the experts. I will put kids back in school and I will reopen our economy so that small businesses can thrive again. I will do everything I can to protect us from further outbreaks or from another Gavin Newsom lockdown.”
Another issue facing California that Jenner vows to fix is the growing homelessness issue.
Similar to Trump, who campaigned heavily on slashing regulatory barriers, Jenner has vowed to “work with local leaders to remove restrictions and revisit any regulation blocking developers, charities, and others interested in building affordable housing.”
Jenner also said her administration would work with the private sector to create solutions. Perhaps one of her most appealing campaign promises is to slash taxes — a core tenet of the GOP.
“The government [is] taking more and more of your hard-earned money in new and creative ways,” Jenner said. “Newsom’s Administration is built upon a flawed viewpoint that we provide an endless stream of funding for a government that rarely cuts back, almost never assesses progress and outright rejects accountability.”
Jenner said she’d veto any tax increase and “cut duplicate programs.”