Calif. gubernatorial debate: Gavin Newsom vs John Cox

L: John Cox, photo by Amy Ta; R: Gavin Newsom, photo by Christopher Ho

The two candidates for Governor of California, Democrat Gavin Newsom and Republican John Cox, faced off this morning in what will most likely be the only gubernatorial debate before the November 6 election. The debate took place at KQED studios in San Francisco, where moderator Scott Shafer asked questions on a wide range of topics, including affordable housing, climate change, sanctuary cities, and Justice Kavanaugh.

Newsom, the Lieutenant Governor of California, currently holds a substantial lead in the polls. He touted the successes of Gov. Jerry Brown, focusing on issues such as climate change and health care reform. Cox, a Trump-endorsed businessman, portrayed himself as a fiscal conservative and political outsider who will go to bat for working families.

LA Times political reporter Phil Willon weighed in on the debate, telling KCRW’s Madeleine Brand that in order to be a real match for Newsom, Cox would have to win the votes of some Democratic voters, not just independents.