Gov. Gavin Newsom sharply criticized President Trump in front of foreign leaders Monday, using his first appearance on the international environmental stage to highlight how California is addressing climate change, in contrast to the federal government.
“I don’t know what the hell happened to this country that we have a president that we do today on this issue,” Newsom said to applause at the opening ceremony for Climate Week in New York. “Because it’s a damn shame. It really is. I’m not a little embarrassed about it — I’m absolutely humiliated by what’s going on.”
Those who are attending the United Nations Climate Action Summit and surrounding events in New York City said the proceedings would give many international leaders their first exposure to Newsom while allowing the governor to signal where he plans to take California’s pioneering initiatives to address climate change. Other countries are watching closely to see how he carries a torch of activism lit by his predecessors.
“The new governor is not a known commodity,” said Robert C. Orr, special advisor on climate change to the U.N. secretary-general and dean of the University of Maryland School of Public Policy.
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