CA Governor Gavin Newsom Defends Biden as Odds of His Own Presidential Run Increase

By: Sam Watanuki | Published: Jun 28, 2024

Governor Gavin Newsom’s political star is on the rise, particularly after President Joe Biden’s shaky debate performance against Donald Trump.

Newsom, who has not declared his candidacy for the 2024 presidential election, saw his odds improve dramatically from 20/1 to 5/1 with Bet365 and 6/1 with Sky Bet. This shift comes amid growing concerns about Biden’s capabilities.

Biden's Debate Performance

During the debate on June 27, 2024, President Biden struggled with coherence, notably losing his train of thought multiple times. This performance sparked “panic” within the Democratic Party, as noted by CNN’s John King.

President Biden pointing index finger

Source: Alex Wong, Getty Images

Biden’s stammering raised questions about his ability to campaign effectively, leading to calls for a new Democratic candidate.

Newsom's Support for Biden

Despite the rising speculation about his potential candidacy, Newsom has remained a staunch defender of Biden. He praised Biden as a confident, energetic, and competent leader.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks during a press conference at The Unity Council on May 10, 2021 in Oakland, California.

Source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Newsom stated, “He never gives up. He’s never giving up, fighting for us, fighting for democracy, our future kids, our grandkids.”

Betting Markets React

Following the debate, Biden’s odds of winning the November election fell from 13/8 to 10/3. Conversely, Trump’s odds improved from 4/6 to 4/7.

Two silhouettes of a donkey and an elephant, representing the Democratic party and the Republican party on an American flag

Source: Shutterstock

This shift in the betting markets suggests a loss of confidence in Biden’s ability to secure a second term, with Newsom emerging as a potential alternative.

Calls for a New Candidate

The debate performance led to public calls for Biden to step aside.

A phtotogrpah of a smartphone screen which displays social media icons

Source: Wikimedia

Johanna Maska, a former aide to Barack Obama, commented, “Joe Biden can’t put a sentence together. We have to change our candidate, and we have so many good candidates who are sitting on the sidelines.” This sentiment reflects the growing unrest within the Democratic Party.

Newsom's Potential Competitors

If Biden were to step down, several prominent Democrats are seen as potential candidates. These include Vice President Kamala Harris, former First Lady Michelle Obama, and Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Gavin Newsom pictured with an unusual face

Source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Each of these figures brings unique strengths to the table, adding to the uncertainty within the party.


Newsom's Media Appearances

Newsom has been active in the media, defending Biden’s record and criticizing Trump’s policies.

Gavin Newsom standing behind a wooden lectern. The U.S. and California flags are behind him.

Source: Office of the Governor of California/Wikimedia Commons

In an interview with MSNBC’s Alex Wagner, Newsom said, “We must have the back of the President of the United States, Joe Biden, at this critical moment.” He emphasized the importance of focusing on the future and democratic values.


Newsom's Critique of Trump

Newsom has not shied away from criticizing Trump, particularly on issues like voting rights, civil rights, and LGBTQ rights.

Former president and candidate for the 2024 election, Donald Trump, speaks to an audience in front of several American flags

Source: @TheTelegraph/YouTube

He stated, “Trump wants to bring us back to pre-1960s world regarding voting rights, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, access to contraception.” Newsom’s clear stance on these issues highlights his commitment to progressive values.


Immigration Debate Highlights

During the debate, Biden’s comments on immigration were particularly confusing, as he struggled to articulate his policies.

People holding up signs. One sign says, “Immigrants make America great.” Another says, “No hate, no fear; refugees are welcome here!”

Source: Nitish Meena/Unsplash

Trump responded, “I really don’t know what he said at the end of that sentence. I don’t think he knows what he said either.” This exchange further fueled concerns about Biden’s performance.


Newsom's Defense of Biden's Immigration Policies

Newsom defended Biden’s immigration policies, highlighting the executive order that reduced border crossings. He accused congressional Republicans of blocking a bipartisan immigration deal.

immigrant man holding child with other immigrants in the background. Joe Biden top right

Source: John Moore, Getty Images

Newsom emphasized that the “failure of Congress to work with the President” is a significant obstacle to effective immigration reform.


Newsom's Broader Role

As a prominent Democratic figure, Newsom’s support for Biden and his critique of Trump have positioned him as a key player in the party.

A photograph of Gavin Newsom Alongside his colleagues

Source: Wikimedia

His potential candidacy in 2028, and possibly even 2024, depending on Biden’s decisions, keeps him in the national spotlight. Newsom’s media presence and clear policy positions make him a significant contender.


The Road Ahead for Democrats

The Democratic Party faces a challenging road ahead, with growing calls for new leadership and a potential reshuffling of candidates.

President Joe Biden in front of a podium outside speaking into a microphone.

Source: Public Domain/Wikimedia Commons

Newsom’s rising profile, coupled with his strong defense of Biden, places him at the center of these discussions. As the political landscape evolves, Newsom’s role will be crucial in shaping the party’s future direction.