Opinion

Newsom gambles on reopening announcement in effort to save his political career

In a drastic change from what Californians have come to expect from Gov. Gavin Newsom, an announcement has been made that the State will reopen by June 15th.

This announcement seems to come at a convenient time for California’s troubled governor. Newsom is dealing with a heated recall effort that began last year and is almost certain to be certified; meaning the recall should be on the ballot this year. Many California residents on both sides of the aisle have expressed disappointment with how Newsom has handled the pandemic, effectively killing many California businesses.

This move is a major play for Newsom. On one hand, it has the potential to save his job by making it easier for people to forget why they wanted to recall him in the first place. On the other hand, if the fourth wave of the pandemic hits California, like it has in France, then Newsom will have to backpedal and reinstitute the restrictive measures which landed him in the hot seat to begin with. 

What Newsom will also have to worry about are the people who have been financially ruined by his leadership. Some may forget why they wanted to recall Newsom, but the thousands of business owners who had to close their doors for good, and the employees who suffered, will not.

Newsom claims this decision to reopen is not a gamble at all. He stated that he maintains a watchful eye on infection rates and current cases. At a San Francisco press conference, Newsome said, “We’re seeing death rates… go down. We’re seeing case rates stabilize. We have the lowest case rates in the United States of America.”

When questioned about sectors that remain closed, namely schools, and if they will be allowed to reopen at the same time as the businesses, Newsom responded that there were no reasons to believe that children could not return to in-person school attendance by June 15th. Incidentally, children are usually on summer break by June 15th.

Gov. Newsom’s attempt to save his own political career couldn’t be more obvious. Just a few weeks back he declared that California would not follow in Texas’ footsteps, yet today he is discussing fully opening. Newsom is fighting for his political life, and if he is able to trick enough voters into voting no on the recall, he will only be more emboldened to implement his radical agenda while putting the people of California last.