Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom took time during a weekend trip to deep-red Idaho to celebrate a bookstore claiming it sells ‘banned’ books.
‘Book bans are at a record high – there have been over 1,200 challenges in the last year, nearly double the (then-record) total from 2021,’ Newsom tweeted on Sunday, including a video of his visit to Rediscovered Books in Boise.
‘Couldn’t leave Boise without dropping by this incredible bookstore. The owners of Rediscovered Books are doing everything they can to push back against these insane bans happening across the country,’ he added.
The video Newsom posted included shots of him browsing through the store, an image of what appeared to be a bumper sticker reading, ‘Stick it to the ban. Read banned books,’ and an image of sign reading, ‘Read these banned books.’
According to an April report, nearly 1,500 books were ‘banned’ in the first half of the 2022-2023 school year across the country as conservatives push back against what many view as attempts to indoctrinate children with books on the themes of race, racism and LGBTQ ideology. The book ‘bans’ – which consist of removing sexually-explicit books from public school libraries, or restricting access to older students – have been largely prevalent in red states.
Newsom, who has been a frequent critic of such ‘bans,’ visited Idaho to campaign for President Biden. It was his latest visit to a red state to share his liberal message that many Americans view as the source of what’s driving many Californians to pick up and move.
Despite his campaigning in support of Biden, Newsom has been seen as a potential rival to the president in the 2024 presidential race. Polls have shown that a majority of Americans, including Democrats, don’t want Biden to run for a second term.
It’s unclear what Newsom’s future presidential aspirations might be, but he did tell Fox News’ Sean Hannity last month that he had ‘great confidence’ in Biden’s leadership.
Fox News’ Joshua Q. Nelson contributed to this report.