California gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder today formally challenged Governor Gavin Newsom to a one-on-one debate on the issues facing California voters in the special recall election scheduled for September 14.

“Gavin Newsom, I’ll see you anywhere, anytime, for a debate in the next 10 days!” Elder declared.

When Elder first entered the gubernatorial race, Shirley Weber, Newsom’s appointed secretary of state, refused to qualify him for the ballot. Elder officially became a candidate after suing Weber and prevailing in court.

Since then, Elder’s poll numbers have soared, as he has become the top candidate to replace Newsom in the recall election. In the past two weeks, Newsom and his allies, including the California Democratic Party, have zeroed in on Elder as the most formidable opponent and attacked him repeatedly.

This is a stark departure from the early days of the recall, when Newsom spoke dismissively of the will of 1.7 million Californians—Democrats, Republicans, and independents alike—who signed a petition to recall him. He has repeatedly referred to them as Trump voters and white nationalists.

“Gavin Newsom can’t defend his record, and he knows I’m going to take his job. That’s why he’s running scared,” Elder said. “It’s also why he’s up and down this state attacking me with baseless ads, phony opposition research, out-of-context quotes, and outright lies. Let him try to attack me to my face. It’s time to settle this.”

The Elder campaign has proposed the following for the debate:

  • A formal debate, with opening statements, rebuttals, mutual cross-examination, concluding statements, and a moderator present to enforce time limits;
  • Unlimited media access to the debate—any TV or radio station, any print publication, and any online venue, may cover the event and access video and audio; and
  • The details to be expeditiously negotiated by two representatives from each campaign.

“Gavin Newsom’s record is on the ballot. This recall is a referendum, remove Newsom or keep him in office,” Elder added. “Let him accept this offer to show up.”

Larry Elder is a nationally syndicated radio host and newspaper columnist, bestselling author, and award-winning documentary filmmaker who has dedicated himself to saving his beloved home state.


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