Calif. Dems Pressure Gov. Newsom About Sen. Feinstein

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California Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom has been pressured by fellow Democrats about who he would name as a temporary replacement for Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., if she decides to resign due to ailing health, the Washington Examiner reported on Wednesday.

Feinstein has not been at the Senate since February after the 89-year-old contracted shingles, a situation which has upset some fellow Democrats because her absence has prevented the Senate Judiciary Committee from going ahead with President Joe Biden’s controversial judicial picks due to the tight Senate balance.

Feinstein has already announced that she is not running for reelection next year, which has led many prominent Democrats — such as California Reps. Adam Schiff, Katie Porter, and Barbara Lee — to join what is expected to be a bruising primary to replace her.

“The hard part now is that the race is not that many months away,” Newsom said. “The primary’s early next year. So it’s now a very different place. It’s not an academic conversation like it was a year ago. If she does resign and hope she doesn’t, obviously, that’s a more difficult question.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., talked with Feinstein earlier this week and said that she was optimistic she will return to Washington next week.

During her absence, the Senate has managed to move forward on the president’s less controversial choices for judges, as a handful of nominees have received bipartisan support, according to the Washington Examiner.

Newsom, who is a long-time personal friend of Feinstein, has said that “all I care about is her. It’s a hard one for me because I’m so subjective. She’s one of my oldest friends, not just political friends. It’s hard for all of us that have known her, and I want her when she decides what to do … that she goes out with dignity.”

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