SAN DIEGO — Governor Gavin Newsom went head on with a gubernatorial candidate in the only California Gubernatorial Debate for the 2022 election.

“Want to start off by thanking the governor for taking time out of his…going forward on his dream of being President of the United States and actually coming to California to have a debate,” said gubernatorial candidate and Republican state Senator Brian Dahle.

“I’ve barely been out of state,” Governor Gavin Newsom said. “I’ve been out of state a few hours to take on his party and the leader of his party — Donald Trump.”

The candidates went straight into topics of climate change, education and abortion.

“I will absolutely fund reproductive services, but I am not going to fund out of state abortion,” Dahle said.

The moderators asked Dahle, “What about instate?”

Dahle answered, “Yes, I’m prolife.”

“You’re not pro-life, your pro government mandated birth,” Newsom said.

Higher gas prices made its way into the conversation.

Newsom argued the oil companies are taking advantage of prices and said he wants to see a profit tax on them. Whereas Dahle wants to see gas taxes paused.

“The gas tax holiday is the fastest way you can help drive down inflation,” Dahle said.

“This is a talking point from the rind,” Newsom said. “We’ve seen other states that have moved with gas tax reduction and we haven’t seen the commencement reduction because there is no guarantee. It means more money in the pockets of oil companies.”

Political analyst Carl Luna, called the debate anticlimactic.

“Because there really is no race, Governor Newsom is a lock to win,” he stated. “Brian Dahle is a little-known state senator who can raise no money in a largely democratic state. Republicans put him up as a sacrificial lamb.”

Luna said Newsom used the debate to look toward his next term, 2024 and beyond. Whereas Dahle used the time to lay out issues Republicans have said California needs to come to grips with, like the unhoused population.

Dahle said, “He throws money at everything, but what are the results? He spent $20 billion, $75,000 per homeless person, and we have 22,000 more.”

“When I got here there was no homeless strategy, no plan,” Newsom responded. “No resources of any merit. Today there is $15.3 billion. There is a real strategy, real plan and there is accountability for the first time.”

Luna said the outcome of a Republican running the state of California, would be a strategy change.

“For Republicans, they are waiting for Democrats to screw up royally with a really bad economy,” Luna said. “If the party stays as far right as its going, the green party might have a better chance getting into Sacramento’s Governor’s Office.”

“And Republicans, if you can’t win elections repeatedly, it’s a sign you gotta change your message, otherwise running just to get the money to stay in office…treating political office like job,” Luna added.