California Gov. Gavin Newsom suggested in a Wednesday press conference that the coronavirus pandemic is an opportunity to usher in a “progressive era” in American policy.
Newsom was asked by a Bloomberg News reporter if he saw “the potential, as some others in the [Democratic] Party do, for a new progressive era, if you want to call it that, in national politics and policy and whether there’s the opportunity for additionally progressive steps ... on the national and state level.”
Newsom’s response, according to the California Globe, was that “the governor admittedly gave a long-winded answer which culminated in, ‘yes,’ admitting there is political opportunity born out of the pandemic. ‘There is opportunity for reimagining a [more] progressive era as it [relates] to capitalism,’ Gov. Newsom said. ‘So yes, absolutely we see this as an opportunity to reshape the way we do business and how we govern.’”
Newsom’s comments echo a similar sentiment from House Majority Whip James Clyburn, who reportedly told fellow Democrats on a conference call that he saw the coronavirus relief package as a “tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision.” Clyburn’s office told the Washington Examiner those comments were taken out of context.
Former vice president and 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden also referred to the coronavirus relief package as an “opportunity” to accomplish progressive agenda goals.
“We’re gonna have an opportunity, I believe in the next round [of congressional economic aid] here, to use the — my green economy — my Green Deal to be able to generate both economic ground and consistent with the kind of infusion of money as we need into the system to keep it going,” Biden told PBS NewsHour in March.
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