California governor to rebut Trump in 1st State of State

Lamar Ellis
February 13, 2019

"There's been too little oversight and not enough transparency", Newsom said in his first State of the State Address to lawmakers on Tuesday. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) recently introduced her Green New Deal initiative and one of the key points was developing a high speed rail to where using airplanes was no longer necessary.

Governor Gavin Newsom dropped a bombshell early in his State of the State address Tuesday, announcing that California would abandon the state's plan for a high-speed rail connection between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Newsom says he wants to continue construction of the high-speed link from Merced to Bakersfield in California's Central Valley.

"The project, as now planned, would cost too much and take too long", Newsom told lawmakers in Sacramento, the state capital.

Former Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown's plan would have cost almost $77 billion and taken more than a decade to complete, according to recent estimates.

"Right now, there simply isn't a path to get from Sacramento to San Diego, let alone from San Francisco to L.A.", he said. "I wish there were", he said.

In his first State of the State speech Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom wasted no time in criticizing what he called President Trump's "fear-mongering" over the "so-called "border emergency" as a "manufactured crisis" and "political theater".

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California voters approved a $10 billion bond in 2008 largely for the construction of bullet train between San Francisco and Los Angeles. The main reason: if the project was canceled the state would have to return $3.5 billion from the federal government. The Democrat suggested building a high-speed rail line between Bakersfield and Merced - a distance of 160 miles - rather than a project created to connect the state's two largest cities.

"Taking care of each other, showing courage when it matters most - this is what we do in California", the governor said after recognizing Pierce in the Assembly gallery.

Newsom also is replacing Brown's head of the board that oversee the project and is pledging to hold the project's contractors more accountable for cost overruns.

"Tolerance for illegal immigration is not compassionate, it is cruel", Trump said at the State of the Union, linking immigration to violent crime and other serious problems. "Overall immigrant apprehensions on the border last year were as low as they've been in almost 50 years".

Newsom, though, said there's been a "gray area" in the troops duties that may have allowed some to inadvertently participate in immigration activities, although a Guard official said the state's troops have not helped detain anyone.

Newsom disputed Trump's claim there is a crisis on the border and any need for National Guard troops was eliminated when Trump chose earlier this month to add 3,750 more USA troops at the border.

Newsom criticized "fear-mongering that's coming out of the White House", likening Trump's rhetoric on immigrants to George W. Bush opposing same-sex marriage when he was president, during an era when LGBT people had less public support and fewer civil protections.

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