President Donald Trump’s first visit to California this week as commander-in-chief saw little support from the Golden State’s Republicans.
“The president’s unpopularity is sky high here in California,” Mike Madrid, a political consultant with GrassrootsLab, told Southern California Public Radio. “Most Republicans, with few exceptions, are mostly keeping their distance trying to disassociate themselves with the president. Which is not uncommon with President in power during midterm elections … this however seems to be a little bit more impactful.”
Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), who is being challenged by Democrats Ammar Campa-Najjar and former Navy SEAL Josh Butner, was one of few San Diego Republicans to meet with the president. “A lot of my constituents see me and President Trump on the same page with issues because we are” Hunter reportedly said.
The deep blue Golden State went overwhelmingly to Hillary Clinton during her failed presidential bid in 2016. Since 2016, the state seems to have moved even further left. Trump’s tax reform also hit wealthy property owners hard, making re-election tougher for Republicans in traditional strongholds like Orange County. Many Republicans are therefore distancing themselves from Trump to avoid losing their seats.
Several California Republicans are being targeted by Democrats in the upcoming elections. In November, Breitbart reported:
A coalition of liberal and labor groups named “Not One Penny” began airing a series of television ads on Saturday targeting five of California’s Republican members of Congress over the GOP’s tax reform plan.
The plan would cut middle class and corporate taxes, and remove a deduction for local and state taxes, which would disproportionately impact high earners living in states with high taxes, like California and New York.
Democrats need to win a net 23 seats to take control of the U.S. House of Representatives.