Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom of California blamed House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday for crime in his home district despite law enforcement and criminal justice being the California government’s responsibility.
When speaking about McCarthy’s decision to launch an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden, Newsom alleged that McCarthy has neglected crime in his district, Politico reported, even though law enforcement is the responsibility of the state government, of which Newsom is the head. Newsom has frequently targeted McCarthy, a Republican who represents the state’s 20th district in the House of Representatives — which covers parts of Bakersfield and Fresno in central California. (RELATED: ‘You’re Doing Nothing’: California Gov. Gavin Newsom Slams Kevin McCarthy Over Rampant Crime… In California)
“It’s an interesting fact: the murder capital of California is Kevin McCarthy’s district. It’s the murder capital of California consistently, year in and year out. I just think that’s interesting. Two and a half times the murder rate of Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco,” Newsom said, speaking at Politico’s “Golden State of California” event on Tuesday.
Newsom mocked McCarthy today for his about-face re: impeaching Biden: “My Kevin will do what he needs to do — or what he’s told to do.”
He then pivoted to calling McCarthy’s district the “murder capital” of CA.
— POLITICO (@politico) September 13, 2023
The U.S. Constitution does not assign Congress, of which McCarthy is a member, the powers of local law enforcement in the states, nor does the federal government prosecute state criminal offenses or enforce state law. Rather, the Constitution of California vests such powers in the executive branch of the state, with the governor being required to “see that the law is faithfully executed.”
Powers of law enforcement, moreover, are shared with the Attorney General of California, who has “direct supervision over every district attorney and sheriff and over such other law enforcement officers,” according to the state constitution. The current occupant of that office, Democrat Rob Bonta, was initially appointed by Newsom in 2021.
Bakersfield, McCarthy’s home city, has a violent crime and property crime rate above the state average, according to Neighborhood Scout. It is also higher than the national average, according to the U.S. News and World Report.
Newsom also attacked McCarthy for Bakersfield’s insurance and child poverty rates, both of which are policy areas for which he, as leader of the State of California, has responsibility. Newsom has been heavily criticized by conservatives for urban poverty and homelessness in California, particularly in his home city of San Francisco, of which he previously served as mayor.
“They have [a] 63% higher uninsured rate than the city of San Francisco, to the extent you care about families and their health, and 51% higher child poverty rates. You would think that Kevin McCarthy would be focused on those issues as a guy who declares that he cares deeply about life,” Newsom said. That last phrase was a reference to McCarthy’s opposition to abortion.
“Governor Newsom is governor of the entire state of California, and under his failed leadership, Californians have experienced the highest gas prices in the nation, the highest gas tax in the nation, increased violent crime, increased property theft, an exacerbated homelessness crisis, and the highest poverty rate in the country,” said a spokesperson for McCarthy’s office in an email to the Daily Caller News Foundation. “It’s time he takes accountability.”
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