Editors at Issues and Insights warn readers about the latest political maneuvers from California Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The governor of the biggest state in the country has said he isn’t running for president. But there’s no question Gavin Newsom wants to be in the White House. The only question: Is this country foolish enough to elect such a miserable failure?

Newsom has said publicly that he has no presidential ambitions. But it’s no secret that he’s been groomed for White House occupancy by rich, progressive San Francisco elites. And now he’s “picking exactly the kinds of fights that presidential candidates like to pick” and is “clearly laying the groundwork for a presidential run,” in 2028 if not 2024.

California, the “damn state” Newsom swears he loves, was once the destination for those who wanted a better life and were willing to work for it. Now, both residents and businesses are fleeing. They’re fed up with confiscatory taxation, a can’t-do-business-here regulatory regime, an extreme cost of living that’s been driven by public policy, and a prohibition agenda that threatens to ban every consumer convenience Americans have grown accustomed to.

No longer golden, California is the center of the universe for homelessness. At 4.3%, the state’s unemployment is worse than in all but seven states, the poverty rate is higher than in any other state, blackouts are becoming more rule than exception, soft-on-crime policies have shown up in ugly street crimes, a politically created drought has a distinct Third World feel, and personal freedom is on the decline while economic freedom has been near rock bottom for more than two decades.

No, Newsom did not create these problems. But his party did. And as governor, he’s done nothing to solve them, which he was elected to do. He has talked a lot, though, and has yet to see a camera or microphone that didn’t need his presence.