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Newsom’s Financial Moves in South Carolina Stir 2024 Presidential Speculation

California Governor Gavin Newsom’s recent financial backing of a mayoral candidate in Charleston, South Carolina, has reignited conversations about his potential aspirations for the 2024 presidency, despite his vocal support for President Joe Biden’s incumbency.

On the political radar, Newsom made a $1,000 donation to Clay Middleton, a candidate challenging the current mayor, John Tecklenburg, as reported by Axios on Monday. Moreover, Newsom’s political action committee, Campaign for Democracy, has rallied an additional $17,000 for Middleton through an email campaign. This move is perceived as strategic, aligning with Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, whose endorsement is seen as critical for any Democratic presidential hopeful.

Similarly, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, along with other congressional Democrats, has contributed the same amount to Middleton, signaling a pattern of investment from influential party figures.

Amidst these developments, Newsom’s activities, including international trips to China and Israel, are interpreted as steps to enhance his national stature, feeding into the narrative of a potential White House bid.

This speculation gains traction in the context of recent polls, which suggest that President Biden could face challenges in key swing states against Republican front-runner and former President Donald Trump.

Such poll results have sparked discourse among Democrats about the future of their presidential ticket. Notably, David Axelrod, a Democrat analyst and ex-adviser to President Obama, has publicly questioned whether Biden’s continuation in the race is beneficial for himself or the nation, highlighting age as a significant concern.

Amidst this political climate, criticisms are directed at figures like Newsom, who are suspected of shadow presidential campaigns. For instance, Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania recently pointed out that while other Democrats are eyeing the presidency, only one has openly declared their intent, contrasting with Newsom’s more subtle approach.