California Republicans Downplay Their Toxic Brand to Survive

6/5/2022 7:52:00 PM

Rick Caruso, Anne Marie Schubert, and Lanhee Chen are distancing themselves from the GOP even as they run on conservative themes.

Caruso, Schubert, and Chen may end up teaching new lessons in how to run as a stealth Republican in blue states, observes Ed_Kilgore

Rick Caruso, Anne Marie Schubert, and Lanhee Chen are distancing themselves from the GOP even as they run on conservative themes.

Big Republican donor Rick Caruso discovered his inner Democrat before running for mayor of heavily Democratic Los Angeles.Joe Buscaino, dropped out of the race last month, with Feuer backing Bass and Buscaino endorsing Caruso.Los Angeles (CNN)Over coffee at Siren's Java & Tea after a walking tour of the San Pedro neighborhood near the Port of Los Angeles, billionaire real estate developer Rick Caruso couldn't stop marveling over the cleanliness of the streets as he listened to Yolanda Regalado's story of starting her coffee shop in this tidy corner of Los Angeles.LA Mayor.

Photo: David Crane/MediaNews Group/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images It’s tough being a Republican in California these days.The GOP hasn’t won a gubernatorial or U.The poll was conducted online in English and Spanish, among 1,204 registered voters in the city of Los Angeles.S.But here -- in a part of the city where City Councilman Joe Buscaino has been unapologetically vigilant in his drive to clear tent encampments and enforce the city's anti-camping law -- Caruso sees an example of what the city can be:"The minute you allow people to start taking back the community, it just continues," Caruso says to Regalado.Senate race in the state since 2006.The margin of sampling error for the likely voter sample is approximately 3.Democrats appear to have an entrenched supermajority in the state legislature.Then, Michaelson is joined by State Assemblyman Robert Rivas, who has made headlines for garnering enough votes in the Democratic caucus to become California’s next Speaker of the Assembly.

And thanks to the top-two primary system that voters imposed in 2010, Republicans are no longer guaranteed a spot on general election ballots, a fact that was dramatized when two Democrats competed in the Senate general elections in 2016 and 2018.A full description of the poll methodology is available on the IGS website.Caruso has surged to the top of the polls in the mayoral race by presenting himself as an optimistic Mr.To the extent that the GOP had any optimism about changing the partisan dynamics of California politics, it was dissipated by their disappointing performance in the 2021 campaign to recall Democratic governor Gavin Newsom.Republican opposition to Newsom’s reelection this year is feeble.Looking ahead at a head-to-head November runoff, Bass leads Caruso 37%-33% among all registered voters with 30% undecided.Sure, there are significant pockets of Republican support in California, and in 2020, they had a bit of a comeback in U.Karen Bass, the front-runner, by pouring a stunning $34 million into his bid by mid-May, mostly financed by his loans to his campaign.S.But with the race starting off close and many voters undecided, Caruso’s ability to spend huge sums on the campaign makes the outcome unpredictable.I'm energized by going around this city.

House races.But even then, it involved clawing back four of seven House seats the GOP lost in a calamitous 2018 election.and a California politics expert, noted Caruso’s relative popularity with Latinos could help him in November when more people are voting.But he is best known for the meticulously groomed, open-air malls that he has built in Los Angeles that are awash in 1950s Americana, with splashing fountains, trolley cars, valet parking and a seemingly unending loop of Frank Sinatra.But as Californians vote in their June 7 primary (since every registered voter was sent a mail ballot, votes have already been rolling in for weeks), there are three notable Republican personalities who have a chance to win in this enemy territory — but not with conventional strategies.Two of them have discarded the toxic party label and a third is downplaying it in a way that acknowledges Democratic domination.“It’s not as cut and dry, I think, as people might think.But all three are running on conservative themes that are resonating elsewhere in this midterm election, only without the loud-and-proud Republicanism.Later, he told LA Magazine in 2016 that he had reregistered as a Republican to support former Ohio Gov.We have to increase the LAPD's gun unit to go out and enforce getting guns off the street, and it needs to be done now because it's only getting worse…" ————— THE ISSUE IS: CLEANING THE STREETS OF LOS ANGELES CARUSO’S CENTRAL TAKE: "The city is dirty, it reads dirty, it feels dirty.

The best known of the trio is probably billionaire developer and veteran GOP donor (and member of the board of the Ronald Reagan Library Foundation) Rick Caruso, who suddenly announced he had become a Democrat on the eve of launching his candidacy for mayor of Los Angeles.” Caruso already has poured nearly $40 million of his own wealth into the race — much of that spent on advertising.His signature developments (epitomized by the Grove) are aesthetically pleasing and orderly mixed-use commercial and residential communities that Angelenos may compare favorably to the rising crime and homelessness affecting other public spaces in their city.His stated desire to “clean up L.His money has meant Caruso’s visage has been ubiquitous on the airwaves, the radio and on mailers in voters’ mailboxes.While Bass and other rivals have accused him of trying to"buy" the office -- with her campaign putting out a digital ad in the final weekend comparing him to Trump -- his outsider argument has proven effective at a time when confidence in elected leaders has plummeted.A.” is a quite literal appeal to the “order” part of an otherwise traditional law-and-order campaign message (he also wants to hire more police officers and in the past has been a vocal advocate of controversial “broken windows” policing strategies that often target minor crimes contributing to “disorder” rather than violent crime itself).“This race is all about a thematic candidate like Caruso saying he’s had enough, we need change and is a can-do business guy, versus yet another friendly Democratic politician who is afraid to rock the boat,” said Republican strategist Mike Murphy, who lives in Los Angeles, is friends with Caruso and has worked with him in the past.I mean, it's basic stuff that our leadership has failed us, that we have a dirty city - you want it to be livable, you want to be proud of walking down the sidewalk… we’re suffocating the ability to live in this city…" ————— THE ISSUE IS: RICK CARUSO, REAL DEMOCRAT? CARUSO’S CENTRAL TAKE: "I believe that the great way to govern is down the middle: I'm tough on crime, I want to give people personal freedoms how to live their life, social issues, you know, to me, you have to have a lot of respect for how people choose to live their lives, I'm fiscally conservative, that's a centrist.

Thanks to his credibility on how to make living surroundings pleasant, and his enormous self-funding (he’s spent $34 million already, which is a lot for a municipal primary), he’s now favored to make the general election, likely against veteran congresswoman (and lifelong, not overnight, Democrat) Karen Bass, who will benefit from a 3-1 Democratic registration advantage in the city (offsetting Caruso’s 10-1 spending advantage).Despite the city's political leanings, this moment of collective unease about crime and homelessness"created an opening for somebody who will say that they can turn things around very dramatically," said Raphael J.His campaign will be watched by conservatives across the country, even though most of them wish he were running as a Republican.In the general election, crime probably will continue to play a key role in the race.A second ex-Republican candidate running an even older-school law-and-order campaign is Sacramento District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert, who is riding a backlash to criminal-justice reform in order to challenge Democratic state Attorney General Rob Bonta.The incumbent was appointed to the position when Xavier Becerra resigned to become President Biden’s secretary of Health and Human Services; Becerra’s predecessor was Kamala Harris.The share of likely voters who feel less safe, 48%, is up from what it was in the recent past, but safety has not become as universal a concern as homelessness.Both cities were grappling with crime and upheaval, concerns that were especially pronounced in Los Angeles after the riots that followed the acquittal of four White police officers of all charges in the brutal beating of Black motorist Rodney King.So Schubert is implicitly taking on a long legacy of liberal criminal-justice policies in a state where voters are now jumpy about rising rates for certain crimes (notably murder, and in some locales, robberies).I was surprised to wake up this morning to Elon's tweet, but I'm grateful for it, and no different than I'm grateful for 'Sweet Alice’…" ————— Advertisement The Issue Is: with Elex Michaelson is California's only statewide political show.

Schubert is famous for her role in the investigation that identified and captured the so-called Golden State Killer, who last year pled guilty to 13 murders and 13 rapes back in the 1970s and 1980s.Advertisement Three-quarters of Caruso voters say they feel less safe now, compared to one-third of Bass voters.Schubert’s also from a prominent Republican family in Sacramento (her brother ran the notorious Proposition 8 ballot initiative campaign in 2008, which banned same-sex marriage in California)."They are literally getting so much mail and there's so many ads -- that it really is kind of a shock and awe campaign.But Anne Marie Schubert is gay and has distanced herself from conservative positions on abortion as well.The congresswoman.She discarded the Republican label after winning her second term as DA in 2018.However, her campaign is more classically conservative than Caruso’s.Biden vetted Bass, the then-chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, to be his running mate as she helped lead the negotiations on legislation to create greater police accountability following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020.

She is basically treating the little-known Bonta as a front man for the far more famous and controversial progressive DAs in San Francisco (Chesa Boudin, who faces a recall election on June 7) and Los Angeles (George Gascon, who could be recalled in November).Her background and hard-core message have drawn strong support from law-enforcement circles, as the Los Angeles Times recently noted.“[D]ozens of California’s top law enforcement organizations have endorsed Schubert, along with the majority of the state’s 58 prosecutors.As Caruso leans on his business credentials to fashion an image of a swift and efficient decision-maker, Bass has emphasized the depth of her policy experience and her reputation as collaborative listener and legislator.” Schubert’s key problem on June 7 is that her otherwise shrewd switch to independent status could trip her up before she can make it to the general election.Bonta is the only Democrat in the AG race, but there are two actual, non-crypto Republicans, one of whom (former federal prosecutor Nathan Hochman) has been endorsed by the state GOP.

Schubert needs to get past Hochman before trying to unite independents and Republicans (and some more conservative Democrats) against Bonta in November.Kennedy Profile in Courage Award in 2010.Being shanked on his right flank on June 7 will not be a problem for the third unconventional GOP candidate in a California statewide race, controller candidate Lanhee Chen, the only one of the trio running as a self-identified Republican.Going into this race, he was probably better known in Washington than in California: He was the highly influential policy director for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.But he grew up in California and now teaches at Stanford.One young woman shared her harrowing tale of surviving homelessness at 17 by riding the Hollywood-Crenshaw bus all day and late into the night with her baby daughter, terrified that fellow riders would call police and try to take her child away.His pitch to voters is that a totally Democratic-dominated state government specifically needs a Republican in the fiscal watchdog role of controller.

In other words, he’s offering a “Horatius at the Bridge” self-description that implicitly depends on his Republican buddies losing every other election in sight.He also cleverly argues that the controller gig should be made nonpartisan in the future and refuses to say whether he voted for Donald Trump in 2020."You guys have survived because you are fighters.What gives his message a lift are widespread concerns over alleged waste and corruption in the spending of federal COVID-19 stimulus dollars, and a general sense that California’s legislature is a bit punch-drunk with bountiful revenues.While Chen needs some nonpartisan street cred if he expects to win in November, his path to a top-two finish in June is smoothed by the fact that four significant Democrats are running (incumbent Democrat Betty Yee is term-limited).The state party has endorsed Board of Equalization member and progressive stalwart Malia Cohen, but the more centrist state senator Steve Glazer has some support, as does Los Angeles City controller Ron Galperin and heavily self-funded tech executive Yvonne Yiu."It's out of control what's happening in Los Angeles," Caruso told an audience of Teamsters, electrical workers and other guests during a recent campaign event on the deck of the USS Iowa, which is now a museum docked at the Port of Los Angeles.

The table is set for Chen to make it to November, but if he does he’ll have to double down on the implicit message that Democratic voters need a Republican jerk like him to keep lawmakers from running wild.There will be other story lines for California Republicans this year.There should be a modest pro-GOP wave in turnout and voter preferences that will help its belabored U.Just drive around the city.S.House candidates navigate a new map engineered by California’s authentically citizen-run redistricting commission.

And it’s very likely the next Speaker of the U.But critics call those plans a fantasy given the city's budget constraints and its current difficulties recruiting police officers.S.House will be Bakersfield Republican Kevin McCarthy (replacing San Francisco’s Nancy Pelosi).Thanks to the top-two system, we won’t know a lot of winners on June 7, and even the hints we get could be obscured a bit by the low turnout primaries in California usually attract (which seems to be even lower than usual in early voting by mail).Though there has often been strong resistance among the unhoused to moving into congregate shelters, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic, Caruso says he would find space for the additional shelter beds by using some 300"surplus" parcels of land that are owned by the city.But keep an eye on Caruso, Schubert, and Chen on June 7.

They may teach new lessons in how to run as a stealth Republican in blue states.More on the 2022 Midterms See All.When asked why he's confident he could build 30,000 beds in such a short amount of time and start moving people off the street -- given the myriad logistical and human challenges involved in that task -- he told CNN:"Because I know how to build.

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ed_kilgore I thought this article was about music. Lol. ed_kilgore Shush

Bass slightly ahead of Caruso in new poll, both appear headed for mayoral runoffBass takes small edge in final pre-primary poll, but neither candidate seems likely to hit the 50% in Tuesday's primary needed to win outright. The good news is that people under 50 weren’t returning a lot of ballots until now. With Katy weighing in as brand ambassador for bad decisions, that may change, and Rick will indeed stay under 50%.

Billionaire mayoral candidate Rick Caruso casts himself as LA's fixer amid unease about homelessness and crimeAt a moment when Angelenos are unnerved by the rise in violent crime and car break-ins, eager to reclaim their trash-strewn parks and public spaces and exhausted by the stressors of the pandemic, shopping mall magnate Rick Caruso has surged to the top of the polls in the Los Angeles mayoral race by presenting himself as an optimistic Mr. Fix-it. Yeah, look how well the last rich guy did, he caused an attempted coup. Democrats will vote for a billionaire? Really. Capitalist to help poor people. Rare

“The Issue Is”: Rick Caruso makes his final pitch to voters“My final argument is the same as my opening argument: we have a bunch of issues in this city like crime and homelessness and corruption and city hall that need to be fixed, and I believe I have the skill set to fix them,' Caruso stated. Con Man Caruso. Did anyone ask him about a Climate Plan, why his father DEFRAUDED marginalized Angelenos, or why he gave money to Anti-Abortion groups? BASS is Trash. VOTE CARUSO Elex_Michaelson GOPCaruso

Elon Musk offers endorsement for Mayoral Candidate Rick Caruso via TwitterMusk joins the growing list of prominent figures to offer their endorsement for the billionaire businessman, which includes Snoop Dogg, former LA Mayor Richard Riordan, Scooter Braun, George Lopez, Wolfgang Puck and Ted Sarandos. One billionaire endorsing another? I'm shocked! Just one more reason to vote the other way.

Sheryl Sandberg's new venture is somehow even scarier than her Facebook gigSheryl Sandberg, the longtime Facebook official connected to the social platform's worst scandals, plans to step down this fall. thereidout Wow what a snarky article and toxic comments on this thread. She has proven to be an immensely successful woman in a make dominated sector. More power to women like her.

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