Is airing a television ad slamming Cox’s support for gun right.
UNITED STATES.- St. Gov. Gavin Newsom, the Democratic front-runner in the governor’s race, has said he wants to face a Republican in November and his latest ad makes it seem his preferred GOP candidate is John Cox.
Newsom is airing a television ad slamming Cox’s support for gun rights, noting “John Cox stands with Donald Trump and the NRA.”
It’s the kind of message that could benefit Cox, a businessman, as he seeks to consolidate Republican voters behind him instead of rival Travis Allen, a state assemblyman.
Neither won the state party’s endorsement at last weekend’s convention, but Cox is showing stronger than Allen in polling, has much more money and the backing of prominent California Republicans.
Politics has always made for strange bedfellows, but California’s top-two “jungle primary” created new incentives for odd alliances.
All candidates are on the same ballot in the June primary and the top two, regardless of party, advance to the runoff in November. That means candidates aren’t staying in their Republican or Democratic lanes as they would in a traditional primary.
Newsom has made it clear he hopes to face a Republican, and the ad allows him to draw an early contrast with Cox while making him more appealing to the Republican Party base.
Cox, meanwhile, is locked in a struggle for second place with former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, a Democrat. Cross-party tangling is sure to be on display Tuesday night at a debate in San Jose, where the three, along with Allen and two other Democrats, will be on stage together for the last time ahead of the June 5 primary.
Newsom is not the only candidate to spend time talking about rivals from the other party. Democrat John Chiang’s campaign has called Allen “TrumpLite.” Allen has attacked Newsom’s support for California’s “sanctuary state”law for immigrants, while Cox has accused all his rivals of benefiting from a political system he calls corrupt.
Polls show Newsom has a decisive lead with a close contest for the second spot. Newsom’s road to the governor’s mansion — which he’s been openly traveling for years — would be easier if his rival comes from the GOP in a state where Democrats far outnumber Republicans. Gov. Jerry Brown is a Democrat and fellow party members control all statewide offices and the Legislature