Caitlyn Jenner, 71, called herself a "compassionate disrupter," a "proven winner," and the "only outsider who can put an end to Gavin Newsom's disastrous time as a governor."
Former Olympian and reality TV star, Caitlyn Jenner, 71, has announced that she is going to join the contest for the position of governor of California. She has filed the paperwork, which is the first official step to run for the position against current Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.
The longtime Republican and transgender rights activist came out as trans in 2015. "I'm in! For the past decade, we have seen the glimmer of the Golden State reduced by one-party rule that places politics over progress and special interests over people," she said in a statement, announcing her campaign, as per Good Morning America. "Sacramento needs an honest leader with a clear vision. I have been a compassionate disrupter throughout my life," Jenner continued. "As Californians, we face a now-or-never opportunity to fundamentally fix our state before it's too late," she added.
Newsom has faced criticism over his handling of the pandemic in the recent past and might face a recall election. Even when infections started to fall, he had enforced restrictions that were criticized by business owners, as per BBC. Jenner called herself a "proven winner" in her statement and added that she is the "only outsider who can put an end to Gavin Newsom's disastrous time as a governor."
Jenner is one of the highest-profile celebrities to come out as trans. She told Diane Sawyer in 2015 that she has been struggling with her gender since childhood. Named Bruce Jenner by her parents, the former decathlete won a gold medal at the Montreal Games in 1976.
She used to be married to Kris Jenner and has two daughters, Kendall and Kylie. She was part of the hit reality show Keeping Up with the Kardashians as Kris' daughter Kim is her step-daughter. Kardashian is reportedly a big supporter of her transitioning. Since transitioning, Jenner has also gained more fame as an activist, and it is not surprising that she threw her hat in the ring for the governor position.
The 71-year-old mentioned cutting taxes, repairing the economy, and flushing out Democratic-dominated politics, according to the Independent. David McCuan, chair of the political science department at California State University, Sonoma, said that she "doesn’t have a record of political participation." She hasn't made her policy positions clear yet.
However, she has already met Republican Governors Association Executive Director Dave Rexrode earlier this month about her possible gubernatorial bid, writes Good Morning America.
California is no stranger to celebrities as governors. In 2003, Arnold Schwarzenegger won the recall election, beating adult film star Mary Carey and former child actor Gary Coleman, to become governor. He stayed in the position for eight years. He too was a Republican, who was also expected to run for president but his Austrian birthplace became a roadblock since the constitution states that candidates must be born in the US. He stepped down in 2011 after seven years in office. Since then, the position has been held by Democrats.
Cover image source: Getty Images | Photo by Rich Polk