Rent-control campaign chief says he doesn’t trust Newsom to help tenants, may be back with 2020 initiative

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Californians don’t seem to be fans of Prop. 10, the ballot initiative that would allow cities to expand rent control in ways currently prohibited by state law. Multiple polls show the measure trailing by double digits; a survey by the Public Policy Institute of California found just 25 percent of likely voters support the measure.

Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, the Democratic frontrunner in the race for governor, has pledged to work “immediately” to reach a deal between landlords and tenant groups if he’s elected and Prop. 10 loses. Newsom recently told the Sacramento Bee that although he opposes Prop. 10, “I will take responsibility to address the issue if it does get defeated.”

Proponents of Prop. 10 are deeply skeptical of Newsom’s promise.

“The reality is the [candidate for] governor, like so many politicians in the Democratic party, has been bought and paid for by the landlords and the realtor lobby and the developer lobby,” Damien Goodmon, director of the “Yes on 10” campaign, said on Gimme Shelter, the California Housing Crisis Podcast.

“He has a long history of taking money from the very perpetrators of this crisis,” Goodmon said.

He also said that should Prop. 10 fail, his organization will explore putting another statewide rent-control initiative on the 2020 ballot.

Newsom’s opponent, Republican John Cox, opposes Prop. 10 and rent control of any sort.

On this episode of Gimme Shelter, CALmatters’ Matt Levin and the Los Angeles Times’ Liam Dillon discuss the four major housing initiatives on the ballot, with special attention to Prop. 10. Guests include Goodmon and spokesman Steve Maviglio from the “No on 10” campaign.

CORRECTION: On the podcast, Matt Levin incorrectly states that Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg supports a local rent control ballot initiative. Instead he supports a temporary rent increase cap. 

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