Eyeing Sacramento, Newsom Claims Undue Credit

In trying to be more than just the same-sex marriage guy, Gavin Newsom is making some bold claims and exaggerating achievements

By Jackson West
|  Wednesday, Jul 22, 2009  |  Updated 3:01 PM PDT
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Eyeing Sacramento, Newsom Claims Undue Credit

Martin Alleus

Newsom has long been fond of making promises with no sense of who will pay for them, so maybe he's who Californians deserve for governor.

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San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is in southern California today making his case to voters that he should be the state's next governor, but he may be overselling his achievements.

The San Francisco Chronicle took a look at a number of claims made by the Newsom campaign that don't ring entirely true.

For instance, the Healthy San Francisco program offering insurance to all city residents was actually the brainchild of former Supervisor Tom Ammiano -- and the employer mandate that pays for it was actually opposed by the mayor.

As for balancing the budget without raising taxes, dozens of popular programs were cut, and fees on everything from cigarettes to public pools were raised to make that happen.

Luckily for Newsom, hardly anyone in the state knows who he is outside of San Francisco. A poll of voters in San Diego showed nearly half of them had no opinion of him.

Chances that they know Ammiano, now an assemblyman in Sacramento, are even slimmer, however.

So unless his rivals bother to point out the vague claims and inconsistencies, he can keep on selling the city's successes as his own.

Photo by Martin Alleus.

Jackson West .

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