AP NEWS

Excerpts from California Gov. Newsom’s inaugural address

January 7, 2019

Gavin Newsom was sworn in Monday as California’s 40th governor. In his inaugural address, Newsom celebrated the “California Dream,” chided the Trump administration and vowed to help the poor, children and immigrants.

Here are excerpts from his prepared remarks:

California has always helped write America’s future. And we know the decisions we make would be important at any time. But what we do today is even more consequential, because of what’s happening in our country. People’s lives, freedom, security, the water we drink, the air we breathe - they all hang in the balance. The country is watching us. The world is waiting on us. The future depends on us. And we will seize this moment.

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Make no mistake, there are powerful forces arrayed against us. Not just politicians in Washington - but drug companies that gouge Californians with sky-high prices. A gun lobby willing to sacrifice the lives of our children to line their pockets. Polluters who threaten our coastline and pay-day lenders who target our most vulnerable. In other places, interests like these still have a tight grip on power. But here in California, we have the power to stand up to them - and we will.

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We face serious challenges - some that have been deferred for too long. Even in a booming economy, there is a disquieting sense that things are not as predictable as they once were. That we must now run faster just to stay in place. Stagnant wages. Costs that keep rising - rent, utilities, visiting the doctor - the basics are increasingly out of reach. We face a gulf between the rich and everyone else - and it’s not just inequality of wealth, it’s inequality of opportunity. A homeless epidemic that should keep each and every one of us up at night. An achievement gap in our schools and a readiness gap that holds back millions of our kids. And too many of our children know the ache of chronic hunger.

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We will prepare for uncertain times ahead. We will be prudent stewards of taxpayer dollars, pay down debt, and meet our future obligations. And we will build and safeguard the largest fiscal reserve of any state in American history.

But let me be clear: We will be bold. We will aim high and we will work like hell to get there.

Here in California, we will prove that people of good faith, and firm will can still come together to achieve big things. We will offer an alternative to the corruption and incompetence in the White House. Our government will be progressive, principled, and always on the side of the people.

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Together, let us build a house stronger than the coming storms, yet open to the world. A house that provides shelter to all who need it and sanctuary to all who seek it -- where opportunity abounds for all who will work for it. A true California house, sun-kissed, dream-soaked, and built with the sweat of honest work. We will not have one house for the rich and one for the poor, or one for the native-born and one for the rest. We will build one house for one California.

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My wife Jennifer and I have four children, and there is nothing more important to us than giving them a good and happy life. But all kids - not just the children of a governor and a filmmaker - should have a good life in California ... Not ripped away from their parents at the border . Not left hungry while politicians seek to pour billions into a wall that should never be built. We will support parents so they can give their kids the love and care they need, especially in those critical early years when so much development occurs.

In our home, no one should live in constant fear of eviction or spend their whole paycheck to keep a roof overhead. We will launch a Marshall Plan for affordable housing and lift up the fight against homelessness from a local matter to a state-wide mission.

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Everyone in California should have a good job with fair pay. Every child should have a great school and a teacher who is supported and respected. Every young person should be able to go to college without crushing debt or to get the training they need to compete and succeed. And every senior should be able to retire with security and live at home with dignity. That is the California Dream. Not to get rich quick or star on the big screen, but to work hard and share in the rewards. To leave a better future for our kids.