September 15th, 2009
01:05 PM ET
5 years ago

Bill Clinton endorses Newsom in California governor's race

Former President Bill Clinton will endorse San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom in the 2010 California governor's race.
Former President Bill Clinton will endorse San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom in the 2010 California governor's race.

(CNN) – Former President Bill Clinton will endorse San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom in the 2010 California governor's race, a Clinton aide confirmed to CNN.

Clinton's decision to weigh in for Newsom puts him at odds once again with the candidate many consider the likely frontrunner for the Democratic nomination - California Attorney General and former governor Jerry Brown, the man Clinton defeated for the 1992 Democratic presidential nomination.

But Newsom curried favor with the former president in 2008, when he endorsed and campaigned actively for Hillary Clinton during her quest for the Democratic presidential nomination. The 42nd president is now returning the favor by throwing his weight around in a Democratic primary, as he has done with other 2010 candidates who backed Hillary's bid last year.

Clinton has endorsed Florida Rep. Kendrick Meek and Ohio Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher in their 2010 Senate bids, even though both candidates have yet to secure their party's nomination. He also backed his longtime ally Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia governor's race, but McAuliffe lost a three-way fight for the Democratic nomination in June.

The endorsement was first reported by ABC News.


Filed under: Bill Clinton • Gavin Newsom
soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. Enough

    Woa, Didn't think Bill Clinton was that wacked out. Newsom is the absolute worst choice to run California. We cannot afford this nut job to run our state anymore into the ground.

    September 15, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  2. inofritzn

    Clinton going to destroy Obama from the inside out? Interesting to think about if these candidates supported HIllary

    September 15, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  3. Di

    It does not matter whom endorses whom! The american people will decide! They can be a DEM or GOP, whichever is the BEST LIAR! Wake up America!

    September 15, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  4. SLM

    Clinton been smoking a little too much medical marijuana?? Newsom would be the last person to endorse. California is in deep trouble with Pelosi, Boxer, Feinstein and now let's throw Newsom into that mix. Time to seriously consider moving out of this bankrupt state. That would be one less tax payer for them to steal from and add millions more illegals to provide freebies for. And they wonder why businesses leave California only to NEVER come back.

    September 15, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  5. JT

    Just please get the "Govenator" out of the office quickly

    September 15, 2009 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  6. rea

    This sound more like former PRESIDENT Bill Clinton owes Newson a favor. Poltics as usual.

    September 15, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  7. Seth in Jacksonville, FL

    This dude is cool. Hope he makes it.

    September 15, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  8. Hugo

    Just what the land of fruits and nuts needs, another Democrat to help them establish fiscal responsibility, of course he has to be a lawyer. California is now officially the State where oranges suck back when you juice them. If America can't learn what NOT to do from California, then I would imagine that our best hope as a Nation is to simply roll over and play dead! From the picture, it looks like he has already mastered Bill Clinton's trademark finger waving and I am sure if he is lacking political skill that Bill Clinton can bring him up to speed on how to lie to the American people with a straight face.

    September 15, 2009 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  9. Kevin in Ohio

    Oh, gawd. There is no more dangerous man than Newsom. But then against, its the left coast..... the land of fruits and nuts.

    September 15, 2009 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  10. SLM

    Newsom is a joke! Billy Boy endorsing him only goes to show he's truly lost his mind. How can anyone who doesn't live in Nutty California possibly understand the destruciton the Democrats have caused and Newsom is about as nutty as they come! Time to split California in 1/2 and Pelosi and Newsom can have San Francisco and all the lunatics in it!

    September 15, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  11. fellow from chicago

    That's it Bill, endorse the skumbag who has made San Francisco a safe haven for every criminal and illegal seeking a sanctuary from state and federal law enforcement officials. Do America a favor and stay home and learn how to knit or garden. Leave the politics to your wife. She wears the pants in the family now (always has).

    September 15, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  12. Mike

    While I am a more progressive person, and Mayor Gavin Newsom has taken on some bold initiatives in San Francisco, particularly with regard to environmental standards, I would somewhat apprehensive about voting for him or any other Democrat for the simple reason that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is one of the few moderates left in the Republican party. While I DO NOT agree with Schwarzenegger on many issues, including fiscal polices, he has shown real leadership and taken on some issues in direct opposition to the Bush administration. I commend him for some of the bold leadership he has shown with regards to Climate Change and other environmental issues. In fairness I have never lived in California, so it is not my decision to make. However, I worry that the Republican party will become more, and more a party of extremists that will be impossible to work with in the feature without moderates.

    September 15, 2009 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  13. Steve (the real one)

    It this guy wins, it will be bye, bye California. It was good to know ya! I would say he screwed up San Francisco but I think Pelosi beat him to it! Hey! Didn't he cheat on his wife? I believe he did! Where is the outrage that a former President would endorse a cheater? Oh wait, never mind!

    September 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  14. rr

    newsome will make schwarzenegger look like a conservative.

    Californina is in the mess it's in because of liberal big spenders.

    Newsome also decided he was above state law when he started allowing illegal gay marriages in SF, so if elected governor, will he allow others to ignore state laws they disagree with.

    But then again, in a democracy, the voters always get what they deserve.

    September 15, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  15. Bug3t | Ruth, CA

    California is pretty much sick of the Governator... and as far as Jerry Brown goes - been there, done that.

    September 15, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  16. DJ

    Gee what a shocker...after all Jerry Brown called-out Clinton in the '92 primary and almost beat him. No wonder Clinton won't back Jerry Brown.

    September 15, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  17. Rick in OP

    Is Jerry Brown still alive?

    September 15, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  18. Fed Up

    Great – when any of these Democrats take over California there will be no accountability. Arnold wasn't great, but he kept the Liberal spending at bay a little bit. You get a nut job like Newsom in and more jobs will leave California and taxes will sky rocket to compensate. After all you can't deny those illegals their services at Tax payer expense.

    September 15, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  19. Roger in CA

    Surprising action by Clinton. Newsom is a complete doofus who helped energize the radical right nationwide in 2004 and more recently in the Prop 8 campaign, and one of the very few Democrats who could make me consider voting Republican.

    September 15, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  20. Charlie Rangel

    With Bill's current luck at pickin' the winners , I'd advise him to stay as far as possible from the horse track or the OTB.

    September 15, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  21. Bj

    If Clinton is backing him, it should be obvious not to vote for him.

    September 15, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  22. Amazing

    Old Billy – you rub my back, I'll rub yours...............doesn't matter that Newsom is the worst possible candidate available to run California. Good thing these endorsements are meaningless.

    September 15, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  23. worriedmom

    Newsome is a strange person. and of course i dont see where he has helped his people. and as far as McAuliffe, he lost bad in Virginia!!

    September 15, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  24. Gage

    If California wants anything done they better vote Democrat. It's the only way to forge ahead. Republicans have proven themselves to be NONPRODUCTIVE.

    September 15, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  25. JC

    this guy is AWSOME. I would love to have him as my governor.

    September 15, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
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