President-elect Joe Biden is reportedly looking heavily to the state of California for “inspiration” in setting the progressive policies of his administration.
With California Sen. Kamala Harris about to become vice president, the new administration will likely be drawing on the more liberal policies enacted in the Golden State, even if many have failed, and sparked an exodus of residents. The Los Angeles Times reported that California will become “the de facto policy think tank” for the Biden-Harris administration and of a soon-to-be Democratic-controlled Congress.
“There is no place the incoming administration is leaning on more heavily for inspiration in setting a progressive policy agenda,” the newspaper reported Sunday in a piece headlined, “Make America California Again? That’s Biden’s plan.”
“California has never had a Democrat on a national ticket, much less a ticket that won,” former Democratic Gov. Gray Davis told The Los Angeles Times.
“Kamala Harris will be in all the meetings and have the last word with the president after they are over. She’ll be sharing ideas, innovations, and breakthroughs from California that might help solve problems on the national level,” Davis said.
A look at Biden’s Cabinet also seems to back the view that California, currently struggling under COVID-19 restrictions that have crippled its economy, will play a central role in setting the tone for national policies.
Biden selected Xavier Becerra, the Democratic attorney general of California, to lead the Department of Health and Human Services. He nominated former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, a professor at UC Berkeley, for Treasury secretary, and Jennifer Granholm who is the nominee for Energy secretary and is also a UC Berkeley professor.
Alejandro Mayorkas, who was nominated to run the Department of Homeland Security, is a longtime California resident, The Times noted. And in Congress, San Francisco Democrat Nancy Pelosi was just re-elected as House Speaker, albeit with a slim margin.
Signature California policies, even ones that have proved to be dismal failures in the state, could find their way into the new White House agenda, including efforts on “climate action, workers’ rights, law enforcement and criminal justice, healthcare, and economic empowerment,” according to The Times.
“The incoming administration is embracing some of California’s most pioneering initiatives, such as programs for rapidly decarbonizing the electricity grid and tuition-free college, as well as more obscure, incremental,” the newspaper noted, including Biden’s support of high-speed rail and efforts targeting pollution-causing cars.
“California has this mantle of leadership, but along with that can come the stumbles of being the first adopter,” Democrat Rep. Jared Huffman said. “It’s an innovative and imaginative place that tends to set trends and blaze trails. It’s too big and too influential not to inform our country’s policy direction going forward.”
“California is not just about pushing the envelope, it is about tearing it apart,” former state Senate leader Kevin de León said. “The state is full of disruptors and malcontents who are impatient and have no problem challenging the status quo.”
The Times noted that the CalSavers program De León helped create in California “is a template for Biden’s agenda on retirement security.”
While the state planned to have zero carbon emissions by 2045, Biden is reportedly pushing for an even more ambitious goal of 2035 – for the entire nation. Biden has also vowed to return the United States to the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change, after President Donald Trump moved to withdraw from the accord and California Gov. Gavin Newsom remained committed to.
“We’ve shown you can have progressive policies and enjoy economic growth,” Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna said.
The incoming administration is already under criticism for being inspired by some of California’s policies, which have proved nothing short of disastrous as the state has seen a massive exodus of residents, has continued to battle spiking coronavirus cases, and its governor is currently facing a recall- effort that has garnered more than 1.1 million signatures.
While liberals on social media naturally celebrated the Los Angeles Times’ headline, many others on Twitter questioned the lack of wisdom in the incoming administration.
“Why make America a cesspool of big gov’t spending, high taxes, crime, homelessness, nutty policies on ‘gender,’ open strip clubs but closed churches & beaches? 2nd Gold Rush-ppl take their gold & leave!,” former GOP Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee tweeted.
California can’t even be a model to itself let alone be one for the country. Political party doesn’t matter. Those in power don’t even do the bare minimum.
— Vanessa (@Chokingvictim77) January 17, 2021
The Dems have apparently learned NOTHING – it is exactly CA’s high-tax, low-service, unaffordable, sanctimonious virtue-signaling paradigm that led to Trump. Doubling down on that strategy courts civil war. CA is a wealthy “nation state” yet the highest functional poverty @ 18% pic.twitter.com/GD7Qm45voi
— Ken Broad (@Metis65) January 17, 2021
Is the @latimes trying to make that sound like a good thing? Highest taxes, housing & fuel costs, largest homeless population, deteriorating infrastructure, corporations leaving (I guess using your argument, they will be leaving the country), let’s make the US California?
— Scot (@slraider) January 17, 2021
Look at Biden’s administration from his VP, all the way down. Nothing but Silicon Valley elites and other Californians who have ruined that state and now want to ruin the rest of the country
— illinoisrepublican (@illinoisrepubl1) January 18, 2021
So we will all be homeless? Well in all fairness he has told us that in many different ways.
— Patriot (@Patriot1776Ny) January 18, 2021
And somewhere out there, millions of democrats will think this is a good thing.. There is no cure for plain ole DUMB.
— tX James G (@grubbs_james) January 18, 2021
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