California’s Governor Buys TV Advertising Time in Florida – Could He Be Trying To Win Back Californians Who Moved?

Toby Hazlewood

Governor DeSantis is not impressed

On June 27 it emerged that Governor Gavin Newsom - the governor of California has invested around $105,000 in cable TV advertising time on July 4, with the adverts to be run in the state of Florida. The news surfaced after the purchase of air time was announced on Twitter:

While his exact intentions regarding the adverts are unclear, there are a number of theories that have emerged.

Trying to win back Californians who moved to Florida?

In 2021, Florida was recognized as one of the most popular destination states for Americans looking to pack up and relocate from states like New York and California in the wake of the global pandemic. 220,890 Americans reportedly moved to Florida in 2021 alone, and many of these were leaving Democrat-led states such as California in search of more favorable taxation and better career opportunities.

Governor Ron DeSantis has stated that it's not his priority to attract technology firms from California to relocate to Florida along with their staff, but Americans continue to move regardless.

While the effect of this influx of people has been to heighten the demand for homes and the value of properties and the rents that landlords are willing to charge their tenants, it's undeniably had a positive effect on Florida's economy while simultaneously making life more expensive for native Floridians.

It may just be the Governor Gavin Newsom's adverts are an attempt to reach out to Californians who left his state, trying to lure them back.

An attempted swipe at Governor Ron DeSantis?

It's no secret that Governor Newsom of California, and Governor DeSantis of Florida are not the best of friends.

In an April interview posted to Twitter, Governor DeSantis described San Francisco as a "dumpster fire" and further expressed concerns at the prospect of Californian businesses potentially relocating to California if they aren't willing to adapt to Florida's way of doing business.

Newsom has also been critical of Florida's recently introduced so-called "Don't Say Gay" bill which prevents the discussion of sexuality, gender identity and sexual orientation in primary school classrooms.

The bill has sparked outrage amongst Democrats, and prompted tension between the state and some corporations who operate in Florida - notably Disney who are now facing the loss of their special tax status as a result of criticizing DeSantis and the state legislature.

Even if Newsom were attempting to score points off Gov. DeSantis by running adverts on TV in Florida, it seems like the DeSantis administration is not interested.

A spokesperson for DeSantis had this to say:

“Gavin Newsom might as well light a pile of cash on fire. Pass the popcorn for his desperate attempt to win back the California refugees who fled the hellhole he created in his state to come to Florida"

They continued:

“The people of Florida pay no mind to the pathetic smear campaigns from the Democrats and their allies in the corporate media. We’re too busy enjoying the freedom Governor Ron DeSantis has created in the Sunshine State.”

Presidential ambitions?

A final possible explanation is that in advertising away from his home state, Newsom could be signaling an intention to run as a Democratic candidate in the 2024 presidential election. Governor DeSantis too has been rumored to be considering a run for the White House and has been beating former president Donald Trump in various polls conducted out of Florida.

This could be Newsom's first attempt to establish some credibility away from Florida. There is a sense though that this may well be a small amount of money to achieve such a significant task! Whether those who see the adverts in Florida are moved, regardless of the intentions behind running them, remains to be seen.

Are you interested in seeing Gavin Newsom's TV adverts and in learning what he has to say or do you think he's wasting his money? Let me know in the comments section below.

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