Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom had some choice words for conservative media in an article posted Monday, but he also urged Democrats to take note of what news outlets are discussing and figure out ways to penetrate their narratives.
Mr. Newsom told Semafor in an interview that Fox News in particular is “quite literally bullsh*t and misinformation,” and a “24/7 doom loop.”
“I’m not naive, I’m not moving the needle at all,” he said. “The deeper question is: What do we do as Democrats to infect that ecosystem with some reality checks? And it can’t be episodic — you’ve got to go on 24/7.”
The California governor is no stranger to appearing on right-wing media platforms. He’s sat down with Fox News anchor Sean Hannity, most recently right after the GOP presidential debate in his state.
He announced last summer that he joined former President Donald Trump’s platform Truth Social to combat any “Republican lies,” and although Mr. Newsom hasn’t posted in seven months, his last post pointed out information that “Fox and the GOP don’t want you to know.”
And he’s agreed to a “red vs. blue state” debate with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis that will be moderated by Mr. Hannity in November.
Mr. Newsom told Semafor that he began to tune into conservative media in 2021, when Republicans were moving in to remove him from as governor.
“That woke me up. And I came to my senses,” he said. “I just watched that ecosystem and became more absorbed in it. And got a deeper understanding of it, and came out of that a different guy.”
There were a few conservative voices that he said he enjoyed for a time. He called Fox News host Greg Gutfeld a “good, conservative, comedic and insightful voice,” who unfortunately fell “into that trap” of demonization and personalization.
He said that he knows Fox News host Jesse Watters well, but was “disturbed” by his coverage of the attack on former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband Paul Pelosi last year.
“We have got to have a counteroffensive,” he said of Democrats responding to what Republicans say in the media. In the interview, he did not mention liberal cable news outlets such as MSNBC.
He said he stays being a guest on conservative media show — even though he gets flak from his party — because he believes there are “good” and “persuadable folks” that are watching.
“There are a lot of independents still watching Fox. And there are plenty of Democrats still watching Fox,” he explained. “I talk to them all the time, or they bring up as if I’m like, ‘Wow, you’re watching Fox?’”
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