GOP gubernatorial hopeful Neel Kashkari made his Sacramento debut yesterday before the Sacramento Press Club, a regular ritual for aspiring governors. He was articulate and informed, and certainly has done his homework on California issues. But are his issues those of California Republican voters who will decide whether he advances to the runoff against Gov. Jerry Brown?
Kashkari’s themes center on income inequality, not an issue that immediately moves GOP voters. He does frame this in economic terms; we cannot close the income inequality gap without economic growth and improved schools. But most Republicans who will be voting in June don’t have kids in school and many have fled to exurban gated communities to escape California’s economic woes. This is not an approach that wins primaries.