But Mike Murphy, a longtime Republican strategist based in California, pointed out that the 2003 California recall election attracted other famous candidates who had collapsed. The list included everyone from the late actor Gary Coleman to adult film actor Mary Carey and Hustler editor Larry Flynt.
“I learned from the rather astonishing and Robert Altman-esque list of candidates of the last recall election in 2003 not to take pre-noise too seriously. I think that would most likely be a stunt candidacy, but we’ll see, ”said Murphy, who advised bodybuilder and Hollywood actor Arnold Schwarzenegger that year.
Jenner denied any interest in the race earlier this year, with Hutchins saying in a statement that “Caitlyn is not running for governor, has never considered running for governor and is very happy to do so. work she does to promote LGBT rights and spend time with her 18 grandchildren and 10 children.
Axios first reported earlier this week that Jenner was considering participating in the race.
Several Republicans have entered the contest before, including former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, former Rep. Doug Ose and businessman John Cox, who led an unsuccessful 2018 campaign against Newsom. The race is expected to attract dozens of candidates from all parties, if not more than 100. More than 130 candidates participated in the 2003 recall, which resulted in the impeachment of Democrat Gray Davis.
Ric Grenell, who served as acting director of national intelligence during the Trump administration, was also mentioned as a potential candidate. Grenell on Thursday launched a new organization, Fix California, aimed at registering voters.
Deactivating Newsom will not be easy. California has become an increasingly liberal state and President Joe Biden received over 63% of the vote in the election. Newsom, a former lieutenant governor and mayor of San Francisco, has also established a massive fundraising base and entered this year with more than $ 20 million on hand.
National Republicans are preparing to invest in the race, however. The RGA has launched an organization, Recall Newsom! RGA Action, which will be authorized to collect and spend unlimited amounts.
Jenner’s connections could be a financial boon to his campaign, some Republicans say.
“Anyone who starts out with meaningful name identification and financial resources can be viable in a race where there can be over 200 nominees,” said former California State GOP President Jim Brulte, former legislative head of the republican state.
Jenner, who became a strong advocate for transgender rights after his release in 2015, has already considered running for office. Ahead of the 2018 election, she said she was considering challenging Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, though she ultimately opted out. Jenner supported Trump in the 2016 election, but later openly criticized his policies towards the transgender community.
Jenner’s extended family has played an increasingly important role in politics in recent years. Kim Kardashian, whose mother is Jenner’s ex-wife Kris Jenner, has worked closely with Trump’s White House on issues related to criminal justice reform.
“She has a name and a sequel,” Dave Gilliard, a veteran California-based GOP strategist said of Jenner, “so she should be taken seriously.”