Caitlyn Jenner files paperwork for California gubernatorial run

The reality star and transgender activist Caitlyn Jenner, who has been denounced for her politics by the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, visited a high school in Brooklyn with Nicholas Kristof to meet some of her critics.

Former Olympic decathlete, reality TV star hopes to unseat Newsom in recall

Caitlyn Jenner filed paperwork for a California gubernatorial run Friday morning.

In an announcement titled “I’m In!” on her campaign website, Jenner said, “California has been my home for nearly 50 years. I came here because I knew that anyone, regardless of their background or station in life, could turn their dreams into reality. But for the past decade, we have seen the glimmer of the Golden State reduced by one-party rule that places politics over progress and special interests over people. Sacramento needs an honest leader with a clear vision.”

Jenner is a former Olympic decathlete and reality TV star. A longtime Republican, Jenner is seeking to replace Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom in a recall election.

Caitlyn Jenner, shown at the 4th Women's March in Los Angeles, is running for governor of California. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
Caitlyn Jenner, shown at the 4th Women's March in Los Angeles, is running for governor of California. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

Credit: Damian Dovarganes

Credit: Damian Dovarganes

According to Axios, Jenner has assembled a team of top GOP operatives, including Tony Fabrizio, the top pollster on Donald Trump’s 2016 and 2020 campaigns; Ryan Erwin, founder of RedRock Strategies; and Tyler Deaton, president of Allegiance Strategies.

Also on her team are Steven Cheung, a former Trump White House and campaign communications hand who worked on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s successful 2003 recall campaign. Trump’s former campaign manager Brad Parscale, a friend of Jenner’s, has helped her assemble her team but doesn’t plan to take an official title on the campaign.

On Friday, The Associated Press reported California now has the nation’s lowest COVID-19 infection rate, even as it has moved quickly to reopen more businesses with greater customer counts and allow larger gatherings.

At the peak of California’s winter surge that followed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, the state was recording 40,000 new cases daily and well above 500 deaths per day. Those numbers have dwindled to 2,300 new cases and 68 deaths daily.

The state surpassed Hawaii on Thursday with the lowest average number of cases per capita in the past two weeks, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. One in every 2,416 people in California tested positive in the past week. At the other end of the spectrum, one in every 223 people in Michigan was diagnosed with the virus.

Newsom has been allowing businesses and schools to reopen by county based on case levels. At different points in the pandemic, he has faced heavy criticism for being too restrictive, and now some worry he is moving too quickly. Newsom said he plans to lift most remaining coronavirus restrictions by June 15.

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