Gov. Gavin Newsom, D-Calif., was criticized on social media after admitting that San Francisco, nationally infamous for homelessness, timed a massive cleanup effort ahead of an important U.S.-China summit this week.
President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jingping will meet Wednesday during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit (APEC) in San Francisco for a much-anticipated face-to-fac —the first since the two leaders met in Indonesia in November 2022.
“I know folks are saying, ‘Oh they’re just cleaning up this place because all those fancy leaders are coming to town.’ That’s true, because it’s true,” Newsom said Thursday at the unveiling of a new program to plant trees in urban neighborhoods as part of his Clean California initiative launched in 2021.
He added, “It’s also true for months and months and months before APEC, we’ve been having different conversations and we’ve raised the bar of expectation between the city, the county, and the state and our federal partners.”
Many on social media expressed their outrage at video clips of Newsom acknowledging he cleaned up San Francisco to prepare for this event and wondering why it hadn’t happened before.
“Extreme House Democrats partnered with Gavin Newsom to infest California with crime and homelessness,” the account representing the National Republican Congressional Committee wrote. “Why will they clean up for China but not Californians?”