Newsom: Democrats should be ‘worried’ about third-party candidates

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) warned that Democrats should be wary of third-party candidates in the 2024 election, predicting efforts to slow them down could “backfire.”

Third-party efforts, including an independent bid from Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and a rumored “unity” ticket from No Labels, have raised concerns among some Democrats about splitting votes in key battleground states, which is likely to hurt President Biden’s reelection efforts.

Newsom said in an ABC “This Week” interview Sunday that the third-party efforts don’t have a chance of winning, but they still can play “spoiler.”

“We have to be worried,” he said. “But you know what? You got to control the controllables. You got to control what you have to control. And right now, it’s getting the vote out.”

No Labels’s rumored ticket has come under legal scrutiny from some Democrats, seeking to keep the effort off ballots. A separate lawsuit is also attempting to force the group to reveal its donors.

The “unity” ticket pledges a bipartisan candidacy, with one Republican and one Democrat vying for the White House. Rumored candidate options include former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.).

“If America wants another choice, we’re gonna offer it to them,” No Labels director Joe Cunningham said this week. “And that’s why we’ve been working hard to secure ballot access across the country.”

Earlier this month, No Labels asked the Justice Department to investigate a “conspiracy” to keep it off ballots nationwide.

Newsom warned against any attempt to slow the groups down.

“When you try to suppress choice and voice, it tends to backfire,” he said.

He instead argued against No Labels on the issues, claiming that much of what the group stands for is encompassed by the Biden campaign.

“Let’s look at No Labels. I actually took the time — I encourage people to look up what are they for — and I thought, ‘Wow, this literally reads as the accomplishment list of the Biden-Harris administration.’” he said. “They’re a solution in search of a problem, I respectfully submit.”

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