Gavin Newsom wants California to be its own nation-state in the Trump era

SFGate | 2/13/2019 | By Joe Garofoli
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PresidentTrump talks with then-Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom during a Nov. 17 visit to a Butte County neighborhood destroyed by wildfires. At right is then-Gov. Jerry Brown.

SACRAMENTO — Just five weeks into the job, Gov. Gavin Newsom has crystallized his vision of what California will look like in the Trump era: It won’t just be the hub of the resistance against the president; it will be its own nation-state.

Newsom - Country-within-a-country - Grenades - Predecessor - Gov

But before Newsom can create a country-within-a-country, he had to defuse two multibillion-dollar grenades that his predecessor, Gov. Jerry Brown, left in his in-box: high-speed rail and the delta tunnels project. In proposing Tuesday to scale back both of Brown’s unpopular legacy projects, Newsom hopes he can preserve enough political capital to get his own legacy projects on the fast track.

If he can do that, he can lead California down its own path for as long as Trump is president. California must go it alone, because Trump’s portrait of America is “fundamentally at odds with California values,” the governor said Tuesday in his first State of the State speech.

Newsom - President - Country - Inequality - Problem

Newsom said the president has “described a country where inequality doesn’t seem to be a problem, where climate change doesn’t exist, and where the greatest threat we face comes from families seeking asylum.”

So California, as the world’s fifth-largest economy, is going to be a counterweight, a West Coast enclave built on its own values and funded, in part, by an anticipated $21.6 billion surplus.

White - House - Affordable - Care - Act

So while the White House is “laser-focused on destroying the Affordable Care Act,” as Newsom said Tuesday, he proposes that California offer its own health-insurance subsidies to families earning up to $150,000. He wants to expand Medi-Cal coverage to all Californians, including undocumented immigrants, until they are 26.

Newsom says California high-speed rail must focus on Central...

Trump - Gov - Gavin - Newsom

Trump says Gov. Gavin Newsom ‘agrees with...
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