Good morning, it’s Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021. California’s gubernatorial recall election is in the homestretch, and not a moment too soon. It’s a zoo. Yesterday, while conservative talk show host Larry Elder toured the Southern California beach town of Venice, a woman on a bicycle and wearing a gorilla mask threw an egg that glanced off of the candidate. She then threw punches at a man who tried to intercede. A homeless man punched a member of Elder’s security detail, and others shouted obscenities. The campaign appearance was cut short.
Among the Republicans seeking to replace Gov. Gavin Newsom, Larry Elder is an unlikely frontrunner. He’s an African American conservative with no political experience and a history of provocative pronouncements on public policy, not to mention a rejection of the liberal social programs overwhelmingly supported by the African American community. This hardly excuses California’s largest newspaper for a headline calling him “the black face of white supremacy.” Nor does it rationalize away political violence — or the ancient racist trope of a white person dressed like an ape while threatening a black man.
It did, however, underscore the message Republicans are pushing in the recall, which is that California’s cities have become lawless havens for criminals and radicalized colonies of the homeless. Although this characterization is an exaggeration, the woman in the gorilla mask hasn’t even been identified, much less arrested.
With that, I’d direct you to our front page, which aggregates, as it does each day, an array of columns and stories spanning the political spectrum. We also offer a complement of original material from RCP’s reporters and contributors, including the following:
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Jan. 6-BLM Riots Comparison. A new database compiled with an introduction by RealClearInvestigations shows that the George Floyd riots resulted in some 15 times more injured police officers, 30 times as many arrests, and estimated damages up to 1,300 times more costly than those of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
Anticipating Biden’s Nuclear Posture Review. At RealClearDefense, John R. Harvey takes a sweeping look at U.S. deterrence efforts since the end of the Cold War and assesses the new administration’s likelihood of replacing aging systems.
Don’t Jeopardize Paychecks With a Corporate Tax Increase. At RealClearMarkets, former Sen. Blanche Lincoln argues that burdening employers with higher costs will undermine, rather than unleash, President Biden’s vision to Build Back Better.
Peter Osnos’ “Especially Good View” Is Excellent. RCM editor John Tamny reviews the newspaperman/publisher’s memoirs.
Robert Nisbet Is Still the Man of the Hour. At RealClear’s American Civics portal, Luke C. Sheahan explains how the famed 20th century sociologist can help reverse our social disintegration.
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Carl M. Cannon
Washington Bureau chief, RealClearPolitics