Former Mayor Faulconer slams Newsom for using lockdowns for political gain

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Gov. Gavin Newsom, who has come under fire from some business groups and political opponents for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and imposition of economic restrictions, insisted Monday the lifting of regional stay-at-home orders was based on scientific projections of future hospital demand — not politics.

The stay-at-home order for the 11-county Southern California region was imposed Dec. 6 when the regional intensive-care unit capacity dropped below 15%. The state announced Monday morning the order in Southern California and all other regions of the state was being lifted, based on a four-week projection of future ICU demand.

Critics were quick to lash out at Newsom over the announcement.

“This governor’s decisions have never been based on science,” California Republican Party Chairwoman Jessica Millan Patterson tweeted. “Him re-opening our state is not an attempt to help working Californians, but rather an attempt to counter the Recall Movement. It’s sad and pathetic.”

Former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, a Republican who has established an exploratory committee for a possible gubernatorial campaign, responded with: “A new day, a new erratic COVID rule.”

“Californians want to follow the science. Instead we’re forced to follow a governor who decides on a whim the fate of millions of Californians while refusing to release the data behind his contradictory and arbitrary decisions. It’s absurd,” he said.

Newsom quickly dismissed suggestions he was playing politics with the announcement, saying, “That’s just complete, utter nonsense, so let’s just dispense with that fundamental and foundational nonsense.”

Former Mayor Kevin Faulconer joined KUSI’s Logan Byrnes in-studio to discuss Governor Newsom’s quick decision to lift the regional stay-at-home order.

Earlier this month, Faulconer launched an exploratory committee to run for Governor of California.

RELATED STORY: Newsom: Science, not politics, dictates lifting of stay-at-home orders

Categories: Coronavirus, Good Evening San Diego, Local San Diego News, Politics