Gavin Newsom, the governor of California, has made a name for himself by meddling in the business of other states and making broad statements on Twitter. Earlier last month, Newsom proved his IQ was even lower than expected. The politician chose to penalize Walgreens for refusing to sell abortion drugs in 20 states. The company was under great pressure from anti-abortion legislators around the country and a changing legal landscape following the Supreme Court’s Roe v Wade decision.
Newsom, an abortionist, was enraged and tweeted: California will not do business with @walgreens or any other corporation that panders to radicals and endangers women’s lives.
That certainly seems like a strong governor taking strong measures. Unfortunately for Newsom, he neglected to do his homework in preparation, and it turns out that the Golden State is constitutionally required to do business with Walgreens. According to Kaiser Health News, California is legally obligated to continue doing business with Walgreens through the state’s enormous Medicaid program. A public records request revealed that the state paid Walgreens $1.5 billion last year.
Oops. Gavin, you might want to remove that tweet. He hasn’t yet, for some reason, but his minions are in full retreat mode. According to the Newsom administration, Walgreens will be paid through Medi-Cal in compliance with federal law, which gives low-income and disabled people health care. Legal experts warned that if California stopped paying Walgreens to fill Medi-Cal prescriptions, the state would be breaking federal law, which says that patients can get their drugs from any certified pharmacy.
Tony Cava, a spokesperson for the California Department of Health Care Services, said that California has no plans to do anything that would break federal Medicaid rules or make it harder for low-income people to get health care. Anthony York, a spokeswoman for Newsom, stated, “Tweeting is not policy.”
The obvious question is: why bother tweeting at all? And perhaps you should conduct some research before spewing useless “policy” that is not policy and violates the law.
The phony threat to Walgreens is another example of Newsom emphasizing flair over substance. He runs slick advertising to remind people of how terrific he is while California is rife with homelessness, has a $22 billion deficit, and is losing inhabitants who are migrating to warmer climates.
It’s far more about looks, style, and attitude than content, said David McCuan, chair of the political science department at Sonoma State University. In his typical fashion, Newsom and his administration oversell their claims while failing to deliver.
This isn’t the first time Newsom has had to backtrack: in June 2021, he prohibited state-funded travel to Republican states he disliked. He was subsequently apprehended in one of those states, Montana, and even used state money to pay for his security. Much hypocrisy there? That restriction is now under threat, as Sen. Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, has sponsored Senate Bill 447, which would abolish it. According to the Orange County Register, Newsom may be behind such an endeavor since it would allow him to campaign in Republican states.
Newsom has been a tremendous disaster for California. Yet, many people believe he has a legitimate shot at the presidency if he decides to run (he insists that he has no plans to do so). One can only hope that the public remembers this and the myriad of other egg-on-face situations Newsom has faced since ripping Cali apart.