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California gubernatorial candidate Caitlyn Jenner covered a number of topics in her first interview with a state television reporter on Friday night.
She has previously given several national interviews, including with Fox News.
“I think I’ve been preparing for this moment all my life,” Jenner, a former Olympian and reality television personality, told FOX 11’s Elex Michaelson in Los Angeles on the political show “The Issue Is.”
“I was the first American to hoist the American flag – this is our bicentennial year – at the finish line, so proud to be American, proud to bring the gold medal back to California,” she said of her 1976 Olympic victory in the decathlon Summer Games in Montreal.
Jenner said that since moving to California in 1973, she has seen the state decline and watched friends leave.
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“I’ve really lived in Malibu since 1976, to be honest, I don’t want to leave. I want to be an example to so many people that if you don’t like what’s going on, get up and I’m ready to get up,” she said.
“I want to be an example to so many people that if you don’t like what is going on, get up and I’ll be ready to stand up.”
– Caitlyn Jenner
She said she felt she wouldn’t have been able to run for governor before turning out to be transgender because she was still going to find out herself.
The interview covered homelessness, education, elections, and budget, among other things, but Jenner often did not respond accurately to the interviewer’s targeted questions.
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Jenner told Michaelson the main homelessness problem is too many regulations making it difficult to build affordable housing, and said she would work with charities as governor to accommodate people.
When asked about homeless living in tents that gubernatorial candidate Kevin Faulconer banned on the streets of San Diego during his tenure as mayor, she agreed that it was a problem.
“When you drive in Beverly Hills and look at the park and there are tents in the park, we have to look at this very seriously,” she said. “But to be honest, by and large, living in a tent in a park in Beverly Hills is just different today. The homeless used to be in the city center. I am sure you were downtown. I mean, you … go down there and it’s so hard, so hard for these people. “
“When you drive in Beverly Hills and look at the park and there are tents in the park, we have to look at this very seriously.”
– Caitlyn Jenner
And despite Governor Gavin Newsom’s historic $ 12 billion package targeting the crisis, Jenner said the Democrat would “do nothing, he’s a politician”.
Jenner added that if an election were to be held, she would not face political concerns because she “owes a favor to a special interest group in Sacramento.”
She also accused Newsom of playing politics in its decision to send business stimulus checks to Californians during a recall, calling them “recall discounts” – despite Michaelson finding that returning money to residents in the event of a budget surplus is a legal requirement.
Jenner also cleared the confusion over whether she voted in 2020 after saying she didn’t vote in a recent CNN interview last November, but public records showed she did.
“It was a postal vote and there were a few people in the house and we all sit around, ‘Oh, shall we do this?’ And I’m pretty sure of it [the ballot] probably sent in, “she explained.” I didn’t do it the old fashioned way, I’m an old fashioned person, you know, common sense. I like to sit there in the little booth and hammer. “
When voting, she said she wanted to make it easier for Californians to vote and to make it harder to cheat so more residents would participate.
However, Michaelson noted that the state had a record turnout in 2020 – more than 70%. In California, a postal ballot will be sent to every resident who has registered to vote.
Jenner was also asked who she would choose to replace U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-California, if Jenner became governor and Feinstein – who turns 87 later this month – retired.
The candidate said she would choose the most qualified candidate, be it a Republican or a Democrat.
“I don’t care if you’re a Republican, a Democrat, a liberal or a vegetarian, it doesn’t matter to me,” Jenner said. “I’m an inclusive Republican, I’m so different from most Republicans. I’m not in that little box because you think, ‘Oh my god, you’re a Republican, you have to think that way.” . ‘ Just look at me … I am the figurehead of change. ”
“I don’t care if you’re a Republican, a Democrat, a libertarian, or a vegetarian, it makes no difference to me. I am an inclusive Republican. “
– Caitlyn Jenner
She added that coming out as a transgender alerted her to the struggles of others, saying that her beliefs have guided her through her own challenges and she believes that she may be destined to be a public person, to help people.
“Maybe I can make a difference,” she said. “I can bring something special.”
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Newsom’s near-sure recall election – sparked by criticism of its handling of the coronavirus pandemic – marks Jenner’s first candidacy for office.
Several other prominent Republicans, including Faulconer and businessman John Cox, who ran against Newsom in 2018, are also running for governorship.
However, a recent poll found that Jenner is only supported by 6% of voters.