The connections date back at least 80 years, to when Jerry Brown’s father, Pat Brown, ran for San Francisco district attorney, losing in 1939 but winning in 1943, with the help of his close friend and Gavin Newsom’s grandfather, businessman William Newsom.
As mayor, Newsom became nationally recognized for ordering the distribution of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. And the shop with the mop sink upstairs, PlumpJack Wines, grew into a line of successful restaurants, hotels, and wineries managed by Newsom’s sister, Hilary.
A Times review of campaign finance records identified eight of San Francisco’s best-known families as being among Newsom’s most loyal and long-term contributors. Among those patrons are the Gettys, the Pritzkers and the Fishers, whose families made their respective fortunes in oil, hotels and fashion. They first backed him when he was a restaurateur and winery owner running for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1998, and have continued their support through the governor’s race.
They are not Newsom’s largest donors: The families in total have given about $2 million of the $61 million that donors have contributed to his campaigns and independent committees backing those bids. But they gave while he was a relative unknown, providing crucial support to a political newcomer in the years before his campaign accounts piled high with cash from labor unions, Hollywood honchos, tech billionaires and donors up and down the state.
Gavin Newsom is succeeding someone who could be considered his quasi-uncle, since his inauguration continues the decades-long saga of four San Francisco families intertwined by blood, by marriage, by money, by culture and, of course, by politics – the Browns, the Newsoms, the Pelosi’s and the Gettys.
Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) defeated businessman John Cox (R) in the general election on November 6, 2018, for governor of California.
President Donald Trump (R) endorsed Cox and former President Barack Obama (D) endorsed Newsom in the race. The forecasting outlets Ballotpedia covered rated the race either Safe Democratic or Solid Democratic in the month leading up to election day.
Fast forward two decades. Gov. Pat Brown’s administration developed Squaw Valley for the 1960s winter Olympics and afterward awarded a concession to operate it to William Newsom and his partner, John Pelosi.
The Squaw Valley concession was controversial at the time and created something of a rupture between the two old friends.
William Newsom wanted to make significant improvements to the ski complex, including a convention center, but Brown’s Department of Parks and Recreation balked. Newsom and his son, an attorney also named William, held a series of contentious meetings with officials over the issue.
An eight-page memo about those 1966 meetings from the department’s director, Fred Jones, buried in the Pat Brown archives, describes the Newsoms as being embittered and the senior Newsom threatening to “hurt the governor politically” as Brown ran for a third term that year against Ronald Reagan.
After Newsom retired from the bench in 1995, he became administrator of Gordon Getty’s own trust, telling one interviewer, “I make my living working for Gordon Getty.” The trust provided seed money for the Plump Jack chain of restaurants and wine shops that Newson’s son, Gavin, and Gordon Getty’s son, Billy, developed, the first being in a Squaw Valley hotel.
Yet the early hand he received in politics and business continues to form the basis of criticism against him. Newsom’s opponents in the mayor’s race painted him as privileged and out of touch. In the gubernatorial contest, former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Treasurer John Chiang, both Democrats, are beginning to do the same.
Crazy California Democrats just destroyed freelance journalism in their state, limiting writers to just 35 articles per year
If ever there was a case study for why Democrats should never be given complete control over our country, it is the state of California.
Actually, there are a couple of other examples along the West Coast as well, including Washington and much of Oregon, but they aren’t a more real-life example of abject lunacy than the Golden State.
Earlier, the Democrat super-majority passed a law (signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom) that outlaws most of what is called “gig” work. Introduced by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, AB5 “changes the rules for how employers determine whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor,” according to lawyer Stephen Fishman at NOLO.
“The law was aimed primarily at workers who obtain temporary (“gig”) work through online hiring platforms such as Uber, Lyft, Postmates, and many others. However, the law applies to all California workers, except for those in several job categories who were specifically exempted from its reach,” he writes.
One group of gig workers who feared the ill-effects of the new law include freelance writers. As far back as October, a month after Newsom signed it, the Los Angeles Times reported:
Freelance writers and photographers in California are in a panic that Conroy’s case is the canary in the coal mine that signals a sharp contraction in their opportunities for work.
AB 5 specifically exempts about a dozen work categories from its provisions, such as doctors, accountants, fishermen, stockbrokers and travel agents. But not journalists. Writers and photographers who submit more than 35 published works per year to a publisher must be treated as an employee of that publisher.
Thirty-five articles a year.
Simply put, the new law “makes in unattractive to hire writers from California,” adds David Swanson, a travel writer from San Diego.
What made Democrats think they HAD to interfere in the first place?
Well, as goofy as this law is, California Democrats just got a boost from a federal judge. As Zero Hedge reports, U.S. District Judge Philip Guiterrez in Los Angeles, a George W. Bush appointee, refused to grant writers a temporary reprieve and instead will permit the law to cripple writers’ incomes.
Two freelancers’ organizations requested the law be halted temporarily but Guiterrez said they waited too long to file their opposition, as he takes additional time to consider their objections before another hearing in March.
“Plaintiffs’ delay belies their claim that there is an emergency,” Gutierrez said in his ruling Friday, according to KPIX5. There would have been time for a full hearing had they “promptly filed” their objections, he added, instead of waiting three months.
Zero Hedge noted that the law has already cost many California-based writers their gainful employment, including hundreds of writers cut by Vox Media. A lawyer for one of the freelance journalist groups said the harm to its members has been “immediate.”
“Freelance journalists in California are losing work each day AB 5 remains in effect,” said Jim Manley, an attorney for the nonprofit libertarian Pacific Legal Foundation, although the judge’s decision to wait until March for a full hearing “is understandable given the gravity of the issues.”
As for the 35-article limit, “I know many people who would hit that cap for an outlet in a single week, let alone in a year,” said freelancer Alisha Grauso of Santa Monica, Calif.
“The 35 submission cap might work for a writer at a traditional outlet or magazine who is writing a 5,000-word piece for a dollar a word, but the vast majority of writers have gigs that are far more versatile,” she added.
The law does not apply to some 700,000 truckers after a different court blocked AB5 from affecting them. But there’s no guarantee that relief will be permanent.
What Democrats did here is absolutely crazy. In their zeal to ‘protect workers,’ they have destroyed incomes instead and made entire classes of California workers unattractive to employers.
What made them think they had to do anything at all?