Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday he is among those aghast at the election of Donald Trump as president of the U.S., but promised that San Francisco and California will remain the diverse city and state for which they are known.
“I know a lot of us are feeling a lot of anxiety and reflection of what actually happened last night and what it means — not only our country, but what it means to all of us here living in California,” Newsom said at a Wednesday afternoon news conference in San Francisco.
The news conference was to discuss the passage of state Propositions 63 and 64, which will require anyone wishing to purchase ammunition to first obtain a gun permit and legalize recreational marijuana, respectively. But Newsom began by weighing in on the stunning defeat of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton at the hands of Trump.
Trump’s win has reportedly sparked protests nationwide, including in the Bay Area where several East Bay High Schools held walkouts Wednesday in opposition of Trump’s victory and a large protest was scheduled for Wednesday evening in downtown Oakland.
“This is a universal state,” Newsom said. “I think what makes California great — I say this often because I believe it — is we don’t tolerate our diversity, we celebrate our diversity.”
He continued, “We believe that inclusive societies are adaptable societies. We believe that adaptability and flexibility are what will allow us not just to survive the 21st century, but to thrive.”
Newsom touched on local efforts to promote inclusivity, like his bid to legalize same-sex marriage in San Francisco in 2004 when he was mayor.
“California has long understood that … if we can practice the politics of inclusion, if we can try to build bridges and bring people together, that we have unlimited potential.”
He continued, “I think in so many respects, we look at California, at least all of us who live here, as a cause. California is a mission… We did that a number of years back on marriage equality, where we said we’re going to step up and we’re going to step in.
“We’re not going to be bystanders in the world.”