In Part l of Voters Know CA Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Troubles Began Before Pandemic, we suggested “A more contrite-sounding California Gov. Gavin Newsom is now acknowledging some of his mistakes in the handling of the coronavirus pandemic, however, he still doesn’t understand that it’s much more than the pandemic snafus that are fueling the RecallGavin2020 movement. Because is it a movement now.”
In Part ll we outlined the many Executive Orders Gov. Newsom signed in the first half of 2020, making law, under the auspices of emergency powers because of his statewide COVID shutdown. We also addressed his new campaign to fight the pending gubernatorial recall election, calling it a “partisan, Republican recall — backed by the RNC, anti-mask and anti-vax extremists, and pro-Trump forces.”
This is Part lll, and covers the second half of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s 2020, while the state was in various stages of lockdown and curfews.
July 2020 to December 2020
Two of the hottest issues plaguing California during Gov. Gavin Newsom’s COVID-19 statewide lockdown were given a pass in July 2020 by Democrat lawmakers, leaving many asking if there is any leadership in the State Capitol, and “where are the adults?”
Democrat Legislators on the Joint Legislative Audit Committee announced that the planned hearing over issuing an audit of the Employment Development Department was cancelled, angering Republican leaders who had been pushing for such an audit, California Globe reported. Imagine if the audit had gone forward in July: Would the EDD have ended up with more than $31 billion in fraudulent claims, as the Globe also reported?
In the same week, the Legislature cancelled the August 11 hearing of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, abandoning all efforts to highlight the spending of billions of taxpayer dollars on personal protective equipment with companies like China-owned BYD and Blue Flame. In April, lawmakers sent Gov. Gavin Newsom a letter demanding details of the agreement, saying there was too little transparency in spending those massive taxpayer dollars, California Globe reported.
By August 2020, after being told in March the country and state needed a two-week shutdown of the economy to “flatten the curve,” Californians faced mandatory mask wearing, even if you are healthy, because it is keeping others safe from coronavirus, and you are selfish for questioning this indefinite mandate. We went from zero to 60 with a two-week shutdown of the economy, to being ordered by the governor to wear masks indoors and outdoors, as California businesses and schools were still ordered to remain shut down.
In August 2020, while California was still under Gov. Gavin Newsom’s statewide lockdown and restrictions of most businesses, and wearing masks was mandatory, convicted criminals were being released from prisons. By the end of August, 18,000 convicts had been released.
Also in August, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s appointed Public Health Director resigned amid controversy, following the news of the epic IT data failure that resulted in the supposed undercounting of COVID-19 cases. Dr. Sonia Angell was only in the position less than a year before she announced her resignation in an email Sunday to her staff. But Dr. Sonia Angell wasn’t just any state employee – Newsom’s team admitted that she was hired for her social justice activism, despite that it’s been obvious to many practicing physicians she is incompetent. And Dr. Angell was let go or “resigned” a day before her scheduled Senate confirmation, coincidentally.
At one of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s August press conferences, he discussed the state’s heatwave, record temperatures throughout the state, and the rolling blackouts millions have to deal with during the very hottest weather. The California Independent System Operator (Cal ISO) began and continued rolling blackouts, as temperatures reached 111 degrees in Sacramento, even as Californians pay the highest energy bills in the country.
Notably, most businesses and event venues were closed down under the governor’s lockdown order. So the energy users in California should have been using less power, not more. However, while the governor said he was investigating the power outages, he also said Californians needed to get used to it.
The Globe noted, the last California Governor blamed for rolling energy blackouts was recalled by voters and replaced.
By late August, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a “Twindemic” would be upon us with COVID and flu season in the fall, and a new partnership with PerkinElmer, Inc. a diagnostic company, to build a laboratory within the state, and ramp up COVID-19 testing. This announcement came on the heels of the Center for Disease Control announcement that it no longer recommends testing people without symptoms.
About the same time, the Globe reported that while California’s main stream media continued to report “spikes” and “balloons” in positive COVID-19 tests, no one was looking at the good news – that even at that time, there were nearly 10 million negative test results. But Gov. Newsom continued to keep the state locked down.
10,652,487 Californians had been tested for COVID – a quarter of the state’s population – with 668,615 “confirmed cases,” meaning people who tested positive, most without symptoms. This left 9,983,872 Californians who tested negative for COVID -19.
Before August ended, Gov. Newsom issued a third set of re-opening plans, moving the state re-opening goalposts once again. However, his latest plan was overshadowed by the Center for Disease Control which quietly updated COVID-19 numbers, reporting only 9,210 Americans actually died from COVID-19 alone.
At the same time, California’s non-partisan State Auditor, Elaine Howle, warned Governor Gavin Newsom that she had very serious concerns about 18 state agencies responsible for doling out $17 billion in federal COVID-19 relief funds. These 18 departments were officially added to the State Auditor’s “high risk” watch list for potential waste, fraud or abuse. The Auditor said the “potential mismanagement of funds could leave individuals without medical care, or money to pay for food or housing.”
Bad Bills Gov. Newsom Signed, and Dubious Policy Issues
- September 2020: Governor Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 145, which lowers the penalties for adults who have sex with same-sex minors. As Senator Melissa Melendez Tweeted, “Well what a shock. Newsom signed SB145, the bill that allows a 24 year old to have sex with a 14 year old and escape a felony conviction and requirement to be a registered sex offender. Absolutely disgusting.”
- During Climate Week 2020, Gov. Newsom issued an executive order requiring sales of all new passenger vehicles to be zero-emission by 2035 and “additional measures to eliminate harmful emissions from the transportation sector.” The Governor’s Executive Order also addresses “closure and remediation of former oil extraction sites.”
- Since Gov. Gavin Newsom shutdown California businesses in mid-March, Californians filed 8.6 million total new claims for unemployment. In the age group of working Californians, ages 18-65, this was a rate of 39% of unemployed, higher than at the peak of the Depression in the 1920’s which was 24.9%. Notably, California has approximately 12% of the nation’s workforce, and one in three of the nation’s welfare recipients. California’s unemployment averaged 27 percent of all claims for unemployment in the United States in September 2020.
- In October, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “office” Tweeted out a ridiculous message: “Going out to eat with members of your household this weekend? Don’t forget to keep your mask on in between bites. Do your part to keep those around you healthy. #SlowtheSpread .” covid19.ca.gov
- Also in October 2020, more than 12,000 Epidemiologists, infectious disease specialists, and public health scientists said in a letter which became known as the Great Barrington Declaration, “Current lockdown policies are producing devastating effects on short and long-term public health. More than 758,653 concerned citizens, 13,731 medical & public health scientists and 41,628 medical practitioners to date have signed the letter.
- Despite the The World Health Organization’s special envoy on COVID-19 urging world leaders to stop “using lockdowns as your primary control method, In a document dated Oct. 9, Gov. Newsom limited gatherings to three families, two hours or less, with no singing, chanting or laughing.
- California Assemblymen Kevin Kiley and James Gallagher sued to stop Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “one man rule.” Kiley and Gallagher filed their Trial Brief, and Gov. Gavin Newsom filed his. The trial took place Wednesday, October 21, 2020 in Sutter County. The Judge ruled Newsom violated the Constitution. She also issued an injunction restraining the Governor from issuing any more unconstitutional orders. (read more HERE)
- Gov. Newsom denied he issued guidelines for family “gatherings” during the holidays, but assured everyone in a press conference that he and his staff would issue specific COVID guidelines for Thanksgiving and other winter holidays “soon.” Who could forget when Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “office” Tweeted out a ridiculous message: “Going out to eat with members of your household this weekend? Don’t forget to keep your mask on in between bites. Do your part to keep those around you healthy.”
- The Globe reported in November 2020 on Gov. Gavin Newsom’s 58 Executive Orders since March 4, 2020, as well as his original “Stay at home” order March 19, 2020.
- The Nov. 16, 2020, briefing from Gov. Gavin Newsom was as instructive as it was horrifying: He announced that California was “pulling an emergency brake” on reopening because of rising COVID “positivity” cases. Not deaths. And he did a soft-sell on hospitalizations. Newsom admitted that California is nowhere near the national average on “positivity” or hospitalizations, but said he’s still moving 40 California counties back into restrictive tiers.
- Gov. Gavin Newsom was caught November 6, 2020 dining in Napa Valley at a large dinner party at the French Laundry, violating his own COVID stay-at-home orders. At his press briefing following the incident, he issued a duplicitous apology, arguing that Napa was in the orange, less restrictive tier, and the party was outside… as if that minimized his personal breach. Days later, photos hit the Internet showing Newsom and his wife at an indoor dinner party at the restaurant, sitting closely to other guests, not a mask in sight, making it obvious to all that the governor and his wife, and everyone at the party, do not feel they are in any physical danger at a “gathering” of more than 10 people, as his recent orders direct the people of the state to obey.
- Nov. 19, 2020, Gov. Newsom issued a stay-at-home order, and curfew for Nov. 21-Dec. 21, 2020. The curfew was for non-essential businesses and personal gatherings, which were prohibited between 10 PM and 5 AM. The Globe asked, “Does the virus go dormant after 10:00PM?”
- November 24, 2020, District Attorneys from across California joined together for a press briefing hosted by Sacramento County DA Anne Marie Schubert and El Dorado County DA Vern Pierson, to expose the massive unemployment benefits fraud in jails and prisons in California. “This is perhaps the biggest fraud on taxpayers in California history,” DA Schubert said.
- December 3, 2020, Gov. Newsom locked down California, banned bars and salons, restricted travel, just in time for Christmas. “If we don’t act now, more lives will be lost,” California Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday at a press briefing announcing statewide lockdown orders and travel restrictions. “We want to nix mixing. Full stop.” Newsom added.
- December 10, 2020, Reputation Repair: Gov. Gavin Newsom hired a lobbyist As Chief of Staff. The Globe reported Gov. Newsom hired a lobbyist as his Chief of Staff, ostensibly to help fix his image. Jim DeBoo, “one of the most sought-after political consultants in Sacramento” according to his website bio, is also said to be a close confidant of lobbyist Jason Kinney, of French Laundry restaurant birthday party fame. Gov. Newsom and his wife joined Kinney at the swanky Napa Valley restaurant in November, violating his own COVID stay-at-home orders, and restaurant restrictions.
- California’s entertainment industry was given exemptions to operate during the COVID lockdown, thanks to efforts by lobbyists close to Gov. Gavin Newsom. If industries can buy themselves an exemption from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, then there is no real deadly pandemic. If the coronavirus was really as deadly as the Spanish Flu, no one would be lobbying the governor for an exemption to his lockdown orders.
- Mid-December, Tesla founder Elon Musk announced he had enough of the irrational and unlawful lockdowns. Musk left California for Austin Texas, and took more than 10,000 jobs with him. Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced it is moving its global headquarters to the Houston, Texas from California. Oracle just announced they already moved their headquarters from Redwood City to Austin, Texas.
- December 15, 2020, Newsom announced he was extending the lockdown into February 2021, effectively cancelling Christmas by telling Californians that holiday gatherings will not be allowed. The extended lockdown was justified, because the governor and CHHS Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly even disingenuously claimed that asymptomatic people are spreading the virus.
- December 21, 2020, with a recent court win over Los Angeles County regarding the outdoor dining ban, California attorneys Mark Geragos, Harmeet Dhillon, Mark Meuser, Alexandra Kazerian, and Matthew Hoesly, filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against Gov. Gavin Newsom, representing Los Angeles restaurant owner Angela Marsden who made the recent tearful, now-viral video as she was forced to close down her restaurant, Pineapple Hill Saloon and Grille. She was forced to close down even her outdoor dining, while a Hollywood film production was allowed to provide the same outdoor dining across the shared parking lot. The message: Hollywood “essential” and necessary, Pineapple Hill Saloon and Grille, not. This was the 17th lawsuit against the governor by the Dhillon Law Group since he ordered the state locked down for COVID-19 in March.
- As 2020 was drawing to a close, and coming on the heels of a year of COVID lockdowns, business-killing state labor laws were on the horizon in 2021 – bills Gov. Newsom signed into law – changing the rules for employers regarding paid sick leave, COVID-19 reporting, classifying gig workers in California, requirements for minorities on boards, changes to workers’ compensation, among many others.
Part IV – Voters Know CA Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Troubles Began Before Pandemic, (2021)