KEY POINTS

  • Gavin Newsom's ad targeting Florida Governor Ron DeSantis will air from Monday
  • Newsom urged Floridians to fight back against Republican-backed policies 
  • Newsom is rumored to be a presidential candidate in 2024

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has gone on air to criticize his Florida counterpart, Ron DeSantis, and the state's Republican leaders in a July 4-themed ad, while urging people to not let them "take your freedom."

Fox Network will run the 30-second video in the Sunshine State starting Monday. Newsom condoned Florida's abortion policies, "Don't Say Gay" law and the ban on children's books in the 30-second ad.

Newsom begins the video by saying, "It's Independence Day -- so let's talk about what's going on in America. Freedom is under attack in your state."

Visuals of DeSantis shaking hands with Donald Trump and captions highlighting Florida's ban on books, Rick Scott's Voter Act and restricted abortion access after 15 weeks then plays out on screen, along with Newsom's voiceover urging Floridians to fight these GOP-backed policies.

"Republican leaders, they're banning books, making it harder to vote, restricting speech in classrooms, even criminalizing women and doctors," said Newsom.

"I urge all of you living in Florida to join the fight or join us in California where we still believe in freedom. Freedom of speech, freedom to choose, freedom from hate, and freedom to love," Newsom continues, before concluding, "Don't let them take your freedom."

Newsom shared the ad with his 2 million followers on Twitter. The ad has strengthened speculations surrounding his participation in Presidential Elections 2024.

While his supporters lauded the video, it has also stirred up a strong response from GOP adherents.

"Newsom is branding us 'the real Freedom state of CA.' Keep in mind this is a state that bans plastic straws," California legislator Kevin Kiley tweeted.

Conservative journalist John Zeigler wrote, "King Gavin Newsom running an ad promoting 'freedom' to people in Florida is like Louis Farrakhan running a pro-Judaism ad in Israel… We have reached PEAK insanity! BTW, if Newsom thinks he could defeat Ron DeSantis in a national race he is medically delusional."

"Dear Floridians! The overly gracious Governor of California @GavinNewsom would like to offer his “california freedom” to YOUR state! (Door slam!) How about just the needle exchange? But unlike Florida, California doesn’t have plastic straws!" wrote actor Rob Schneider, who switched to the GOP in 2013.

This ad is being viewed as Newsom's response to DeSantis calling San Francisco a "dumpster fire" at an event in April, while adding Democrats from California and other states were moving to Florida. He had also mentioned their voting patterns could be a "cause of concern."

California Governor Gavin Newsom delivers remarks as he tours the U.S. Forest Service's Del Rosa Fire Station with U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, in San Bernardino, California, U.S., January 21, 2022.
California Governor Gavin Newsom delivers remarks as he tours the U.S. Forest Service's Del Rosa Fire Station with U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, in San Bernardino, California, U.S., January 21, 2022. Reuters / Mike Blake
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