Report: Gavin Newsom’s California Tour Cost 5x as Much as ‘State of the State’

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D)’s tour of the state cost taxpayers five times more than a traditional “State of the State,” according to a new report by public affairs blog CalMatters.

As Breitbart News reported earlier this year, Newsom — perhaps contemplating a potential presidential run — decided to tour California and hold several events, rather than performing the traditional “State of the State” address in front of the legislature:

Newsom will be giving a series of policy announcements during a statewide tour next week instead of a traditional State of the State speech, which is required by the California constitution and is generally done in the Assembly chamber. His office reportedly explained that he would send a formal letter to the Legislature.
A spokesperson for the governor’s office stated: “Building on his inaugural address and January budget, the governor looks forward to fulfilling his constitutional obligation to update the Legislature on the state of the state and joining lawmakers throughout California to outline new policy proposals that will strengthen our communities.”

report Wednesday by CalMatters suggests Newsom may have stuck taxpayers with five times the bill:

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s State of the State tour to jump start his second term cost taxpayers at least five times more than the traditional prepared speech that launched his first, according to records obtained by CalMatters.
Newsom’s February 2019 speech to a joint session of the Legislature in Sacramento cost taxpayers a little less than $7,000, mostly travel expenses for two consultants and teleprompter services.
The 2023 tour cost at least $38,000, according to receipts obtained through public records requests. The receipts include flights, hotel and transportation expenses for the governor and his staff.

That February 2019 speech was significant for another reason: Newsom used it to cancel the San Francisco-to-Los Angeles high-speed rail project, though he is trying to build the part that runs through the Central Valley.

The governor may have wished to avoid making a similar splash in the legislature this year, especially since he had just been absent, and on vacation in Mexico, during deadly blizzards that killed at least 22 people.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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