Governor-Elect Gavin Newsom on Nov. 8, 2018.

Doug Sovern/KCBS Radio

Newsom: 'Insane' To Normalize Mass Shootings

Doug Sovern
November 08, 2018 - 2:26 pm

SAN FRANCISCO — Governor-elect Gavin Newsom had carefully laid plans to serve food to the homeless at St. Anthony’s Dining Room in San Francisco on Thursday.

But that changed after Wednesday’s deadly mass shooting at a crowded bar in Thousand Oaks in Ventura County. Newsom, who is serving as acting governor while Gov. Jerry Brown travels in Texas, put service on pause to speak to the seemingly endless epidemic of gun violence.

Newsom openly worried that Americans are becoming numb to mass casualties in ordinary homes and businesses, while Congress does nothing to stop it.

“It’s insane,” he said. “Is the only way to describe it. The normalization — that’s the only way I can describe it. It’s become normalized. And it’s just jaw-dropping to me that these guys get re-elected, or even elected.”

Newsom noted that this level of everyday gun violence does not routinely happen in other countries.

“We can do more and do better on gun safety. ‘Good enough’ never is,” he added. “California continues to lead the nation, Massachusetts, a few other states. But there are areas where we still fall short.”

It was Newsom’s first appearance since he cruised to victory over Republican businessman John Cox on Tuesday, an outcome that was widely expected in the deep blue state.

Long a champion of gun control, Newsom wrote Proposition 63, passed by voters in 2016, which requires background checks to purchase ammunition, However, a ban on high capacity magazines in that measure remains in legal limbo. Today he blasted the National Rifle Association for tying up that effort in court, and for blocking meaningful gun control around the country.

“I completely support the Second Amendment, I support people’s right to bear arms,” he insisted. “Always have…without hesitation, I believe that people have that fundamental right. But I also think people also have a right to, you know, not get a phone call at 2 a.m., just praying that their daughter survived a mass shooting.”

Newsom said that it’s too soon to know if this mass murder is cause for new controls, but believes that something has to be done beyond the politicians offering thoughts and prayers to the victims' families.