Cal­i­for­nia Democ­rats say Kamala Har­ris could have upper hand over Gavin New­som if they run

California Democrats say Kamala Harris could have upper hand over Gavin Newsom if they run

SACRAMENTO, Cal­i­for­nia — Vice Pres­i­dent Kamala Har­ris has one advan­tage over Gov. Gavin New­som (D‑CA) if a Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­den­tial pri­ma­ry were held tomor­row, accord­ing to par­ty mem­bers in their home state of Cal­i­for­nia.
That edge is that she is not a white man, those Democ­rats say.
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Vice Pres­i­dent Kamala Har­ris, cen­ter, speaks with Gov. Gavin New­som (D‑CA), left, and Los Ange­les May­or Karen Bass about I‑10, which was closed by an under­pass fire on Nov. 11, 2023, in Los Ange­les on Nov. 19.
(AP Photo/Alex Gal­lar­do)

Regard­less of who con­tests next year’s gen­er­al elec­tion, the polit­i­cal chat­ter­ing class is talk­ing about the prospects of Har­ris, regard­ed by some as Pres­i­dent Joe Biden’s heir appar­ent, and New­som, who has been rapid­ly build­ing his nation­al pro­file, includ­ing by debat­ing 2024 Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Gov. Ron DeSan­tis (R‑FL).
Some Democ­rats at a Cal­i­for­nia state par­ty con­ven­tion in Sacra­men­to con­tend New­som will cede to Har­ris, based on their shared his­to­ries in San Fran­cis­co when New­som was may­or and Har­ris was dis­trict attor­ney and, then in Cal­i­for­ni­a’s cap­i­tal, when New­som was lieu­tenant gov­er­nor and Har­ris was attor­ney gen­er­al. But oth­er par­ty mem­bers are of the opin­ion that the next pri­ma­ry should be an open, com­pet­i­tive race.
Aja, 42, of Sacra­men­to, who pre­ferred not to pro­vide her last name, dis­missed spec­u­la­tion that New­som is in the mid­dle of a shad­ow 2024 pri­ma­ry cam­paign against Biden as he intro­duces him­self to the coun­try, even through Fox News, and takes trips to the likes of Chi­na. She was also adamant that there was no “ani­mos­i­ty” between Har­ris and New­som, whom she calls Gov. Bruce Wayne because he is a “wealthy, good-look­ing phil­an­thropist,” since “they all came up through the ranks togeth­er.”
“I think with the way pol­i­tics is going, if I had to make one point, she might have the edge because peo­ple are tired of wealthy, white men get­ting the nom­i­na­tion,” Aja told the Wash­ing­ton Exam­in­er.
Aja, a health­care work­er, defend­ed Har­ris from crit­i­cism of her vice pres­i­den­tial record, say­ing that “nobody paid atten­tion to the vice pres­i­dent until it was a half-Indi­an, half-black woman” and that she is Biden’s “face of the pro-choice move­ment.”
But scruti­ny of Har­ris is not a Repub­li­can trope, with Joy O’Con­nell, 79, a retired social work­er from Red­ding, Cal­i­for­nia, assert­ing her vice pres­i­den­tial work has not been “pub­li­cized.”
“I don’t know that much about what she has done,” she said. “I kind of knew where she was com­ing from as a sen­a­tor, but I’m not sure. So I think I would sup­port Gavin.”
For Susan Gor­don Green, 54, a mul­ti­cul­tur­al and gen­der stud­ies pro­fes­sor at Cal­i­for­nia State Uni­ver­si­ty, Chico, New­som is a “loy­al par­ty man” who will “cer­tain­ly respect” Har­ris as “next in line” after Biden. When pressed for evi­dence, Green cit­ed New­som not chal­leng­ing for­mer Gov. Jer­ry Brown when he was Brown’s No. 2.
“They were known to not nec­es­sar­i­ly see eye-to-eye on things, but he was right there,” she said. “He knew what his job was. His job was to sup­port Jer­ry Brown and to sup­port the par­ty.”
But Gretchen New­som, 42, who is the Inter­na­tion­al Broth­er­hood of Elec­tri­cal Work­ers 9th Dis­tric­t’s polit­i­cal coor­di­na­tor in San Diego and is not relat­ed to the gov­er­nor, dis­agreed, and she argued that 2028, at least, is “any­body’s game.”

“They do have two very dif­fer­ent sto­ries and very dif­fer­ent back­grounds, but they have very sim­i­lar pol­i­cy per­spec­tives,” she said. “So it will be inter­est­ing to see how they dif­fer­en­ti­ate from one anoth­er.”
Gavin New­som, sim­i­lar to many politi­cians, has wok­en up in the morn­ing and seen a pres­i­dent in the mir­ror since he was a teenag­er, accord­ing to Thad Kouss­er, a polit­i­cal sci­ence pro­fes­sor at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, San Diego, and a co-direc­tor of the Yankelovich Cen­ter.
“He’s put him­self in every con­ver­sa­tion for 2028 and beyond,” Kouss­er said. “Being the voice of Democ­rats, the self-ap …