California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) is facing mounting criticism after a San Francisco cleanup effort to host Paramount Leader Xi Jinping. This Wednesday, President Joe Biden (D) and Jinping will be meeting during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit (APEC) in San Francisco.
San Francisco has been notorious for rising homelessness, but this week, Newsom authorized a massive cleanup that has received widespread criticism from Republicans.
Last week, during a press conference to unveil a new program that will plant trees in urban neighborhoods, Newsom responded to the criticism.
“I know folks are saying, ‘Oh they’re just cleaning up this place because all those fancy leaders are coming to town.’ That’s true, because it’s true,” Newsom confirmed, adding that “it’s also true for months and months before APEC, we’ve been having different conversations and we’ve raised the bar of expectation between the city, the county, and the state and our federal partners.”
Republicans have largely criticized Newsom over the cleaning effort, calling it a move to appease Jinping as opposed to cleaning up San Francisco for the sake of helping California.
In response to the effort, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) shared a video of Newsom’s press conference on social media, captioning the video with “extreme House Democrats partnered with Gavin Newsom to infest California with crime and homelessness. Why will they clean up for China but not Californians?”
Similarly, Texas Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R) took to social media to comment on the controversy, expressing that “at least Newsom is willing to say the quiet part out loud. Democrat leaders only care about cleaning up their cities for foreign leaders and major sporting events. Their own citizens aren’t even an afterthought.”
Calling it “a really pathetic display of leadership,” Crenshaw reminded his followers “that Gavin Newsom was also mayor of San Francisco from 2004-2011… I guess the well-being of his city didn’t matter then either.”