Newsom Reveals Why He Took Aim at Ron DeSantis in Ad


California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) opened up about the reason behind his decision to attack Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) in an ad.

On July 3, Newsom posted an ad to Twitter with the caption, “We’re about to celebrate Independence Day — but Freedom is under attack by Republican leaders in states like Florida.”

He added, “Banning books. Restricting speech. Making it harder to vote. Criminalizing women and doctors. It’s time to stand up. Don’t let them take your freedom.”

In the ad, Newsom urges Florida residents to join the fight or move to California.

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During an interview with the Sacramento Bee, Newsom said DeSantis “did something that tipped me very directly, and that was going after the Special Olympics. I had an emotional response to that.”

He added, “That led to the consideration of doing something a little bit more expressive and that was the determination on the ad.”

The Bee noted just before the beginning of the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games, the Florida Department of Health said it would fine the organization $27.5 million unless it dropped its vaccine mandate.

Newsom responded in a tweet at the time, saying, “Ron DeSantis’ values on full display: Bullying. The. Special. Olympics.”

DeSantis issued his own response to the ad during a press conference in Cape Coral, Florida.

“California is driving people away with their terrible governance,” DeSantis said.

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He continued, “They are hemorrhaging population. It’s almost hard to drive people out of a place like California given their natural advantages, yet they’re finding a way to do it.” 

DeSantis argued Florida has “created a citadel of freedom here that has attracted people and we are proud of it.”

Newsom’s campaign spokesman Nathan Click told Insider DeSantis’ idea of freedom “means government forcing rape victims to bear the child of their attacker.”

He added, “‘Freedom’ in Florida means any 18 year old can buy an AR-15 and unlimited ammunition, no questions asked. Governor DeSantis’ idea of ‘freedom’ is 40,000 Floridians dying because of the policies he put in place during the pandemic. DeSantis’ take on freedom is simply un-American.”

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