…sparking race-based outrcries from many Democrats
Mid-November, I reported that several California Democrats were lining up for the chance to fill Kamala Harris’ US Senate seat.
The winner in this phase of political reshuffling is the Secretary of State, Alex Padilla.
Padilla, a longtime Newsom ally, will become the first Latino to represent California in the Senate, succeeding another history-making politician, Sen. Kamala Harris. Harris, who was the second Black woman and first South Asian to serve in the Senate, in November became the first woman elected vice president of the United States.
“Through his tenacity, integrity, smarts and grit, California is gaining a tested fighter in their corner who will be a fierce ally in D.C., lifting up our state’s values and making sure we secure the critical resources to emerge stronger from this pandemic. He will be a senator for all Californians,” Newsom said in a statement released Tuesday morning.
…Padilla, who earned a degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, went on to become the city’s youngest council president, a state senator and California’s current two-term secretary of state.
“I’m just tremendously honored and humbled and look forward to bringing my story, and my journey, as an important perspective to the deliberations of the United States Senate,” Padilla told The Times in an interview shortly after Tuesday’s announcement. “I know there’s a lot of big-picture issues, but the COVID response is front and center. A relief package was done last weekend but much more is going to be necessary. This pandemic is far from over.”
The “Latino” aspect of Padilla’s nomination is getting all the social media attention. However, the selection isn’t being embraced by many in the Democratic Party who believe the seat should automatically go to a black woman.
“I will tell you that I do believe that there should be an African American woman in the Congress,” Rep. Karen Bass, D-Calif., told FOX 11 earlier in December. “When Sen. Harris is sworn in as the vice president, there will be one African American Democrat, one African American Republican, no African American women.”
San Francisco Mayor London Breed was particularly unhappy with the choice.
During a virtual press conference Tuesday a couple hours after Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the appointment, Breed called it an “unfortunate situation,” hoping to see a Black woman appointed to replace Harris.
“The sad reality is [Harris] was the only African American woman in the Senate at this time, and when you think about the history of this country and the challenges that exist for African Americans especially … this is a real blow to the African American community, to African American women, to women in general,” Breed said. “I think it’s really challenging to put it in words.”
Perhaps, however, the most important aspect of Padilla’s career that Legal Insurrection voters should know is that he faces a GOP-sought probe over his involvement in a Biden-connected, political consulting firm’s state contract.
Padilla, a Democrat, is under fire from Republican congressmen over a contract his office awarded to public affairs and political consulting firm SKDKnickerbocker, which created a voter outreach campaign called Vote Safe California.
The Sacramento Bee first reported the contract with the firm, which has been linked to several notable Democrats. Earlier this month, the main banner to the firm’s website featured a picture of President-elect Joe Biden and Harris and thanked them for fighting for the “the soul of the nation,” according to the Bee.
The voter outreach program was used to provide California voters with voting information during the coronavirus pandemic. The Bee reported that Padilla’s office has received more than $34 million worth of invoices from the firm.
It appears that Padilla will fit right in with the Washington, DC crowd!DONATE
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