In a major scoop, the California Globe yesterday uncovered just where Governor Newsom and his family spent their mystery Mexico vacation. Our source had spotted the Newsom family spending Thanksgiving week at La Datcha Cabo San Lucas villa in Pedregal, near Cabo San Lucas in the Mexican state of Baja California Sur—an ultra lux property where a villa runs $23,000 to $29,000 per night, owned by Russian entrepreneur and businessman Oleg Tinkov. The source, who was also staying in Pedregal, said from their rental home they could see the 10,000 to 12,000 square foot villa, and could also see the Newsoms and their children, along with another couple.
The source sent the Globe photos, which we included in the article.
Before publishing, the Globe emailed the governor’s press office midday on Tuesday and asked if they could tell us whether the governor paid for his vacation villa himself, and if not, who did?
We heard back from the governor’s press secretary Erin Mellon late in the day: “Katy – This was a personal trip paid for by the family.”
We had several exchanges after that, starting with our question, “What family paid for this?”
The Globe has no reason to doubt the word of the governor’s press secretary. But as we mentioned in yesterday’s story, “by the family” is an intriguingly crafted answer, especially when one’s family members include prominent Californians whose surnames are Brown, Pelosi and Getty.
Following a short phone conversation with press spokeswoman Erin Mellon, it became apparent that the Governor sent her to deny that this was his vacation spot. She asked us to take down our story, but did it in an oddly indirect, lawyerly way. She declined to state clearly whether the male figure in a dark blue shirt and light pants was indeed Newsom, as our story claimed.
We replied by asking if Gov. Newsom and his family did not stay at La Datcha Cabo San Lucas Thanksgiving week, where did he stay, and what did it cost?
The governor’s spokeswoman declined to clarify where in Mexico the governor and his family stayed or the cost of that stay, other than repeating her assertion that the trip was funded by “The Newsom family.”
On Wednesday morning, as the story began gathering steam on social media, the spokesperson declined to specify further and added, “Katy – I will repeat what I sent last night. I cannot provide the location due to security concerns. They rented a home.”
And then … a second source emerged.
Today, a woman who had read yesterday’s Globe story, presumably including the update in which the governor denied through his spokeswoman that he had stayed at La Datcha, sent us another photo. She was staying on Playa Palmilla, which is near La Datcha. This photo is, according to the source, “on the public beach near the Palmilla with one child and his wife.”
Here is that photo.
Gov Newsom, do you still deny that you and your family were at La Datcha Cabo San Lucas last week? Cuz, dude … that’s you in the photo.
There is no denying that this photo, taken by a California Globe reader who asked not to be named for fear of retribution in a one-party state, shows our handsome governor, along with his son and the first partner.
Which is fine — a lovely family enjoying a vacation. But why the secrecy? Why the weird non-answers from the spokesperson? Why the denials? Are there really “security concerns” lingering a week after the governor left the entire country of Mexico?
There’s a saying in journalism: The way we’re taught to count is one, two, trend.
Last month, Governor Newsom canceled a climate change trip to Scotland at the very last moment, citing “family obligations.” That’s one. Then he disappeared for 10 days and went unseen and unaccounted for until he resurfaced at the decadent wedding of Getty oil heiress Ivy Love Getty. That’s two.
So now we’ve got the governor taking a vacation but his spokesperson won’t say where, won’t address what it costs, won’t even acknowledge or deny whether the photos are even of the governor, and then splits hairs over precisely which property the Newsom family technically rented in Cabo. Three makes a trend, indeed.
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