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Father of Polly Klaas, Fresno Sheriff Urge Newsom’s Recall Over Crime Record



Victims rights advocate Marc Klaas and Fresno Count Sheriff Margaret Mims speak in support of recalling Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday. (GV Wire/David Taub)
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Marc Klaas remains vigilant advocating for victims rights, 28 years after the notorious kidnapping and murder of his daughter Polly Klaas in the San Francisco Bay Area.

To make the state safer, he says, California must recall Gov. Gavin Newsom.

“This is about this guy usurping the power of the people, making sure that we’re under the foot of of crime. He does not care about crime victims. He only cares about the prisoners as he is so quick to release,” Klaas said.

Joined by other fathers of violent crime victims, including Mike Reynolds of Fresno, Klaas said Newsom has relaxed tough-on-crime measures like the state’s 3 Strikes law and the criminal gun sentencing measure 10-20-life.

Rescue California, one of the groups that helped get the Sept. 14 recall on the ballot, held a news conference at the steps of the Fresno Veterans Memorial building.

Mims Blames Newsom

Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims was the only elected leader joining the news conference.

“Californians are less safe (because of) the governor’s policies and his stated future plans of justice reform,” Mims said.

She cited Newsom’s moratorium on the death penalty, the state’s gun laws, and policies allowing early inmate releases.

“The governor does not discuss victims of crimes, he does not acknowledge the devastation they live with all of their lives,” Mims said. “Victims continue to battle medical and psychological issues that cause lifelong pain and suffering due to their loved ones losing the lives in the most horrible ways.”

Mims also brought up Newsom’s recent decision not to block the parole of David Weidert, who was convicted in the 1980 murder of Michael Morganti and buried alive in the Fresno foothills.

SEIU Wants to Keep Newsom

“Governor Newsom has been the champion for workers.”Riley Talford, president SEIU 521

Counter-protesting quietly, a group of Fresno union members watched from the sidelines. They advocate for keeping Newsom in office because of his pro-labor stance.

“Governor Newsom has been the champion for workers,” said Riley Talford, the president of SEIU 521 representing Fresno County public employees.

Talford cited Newsom’s support of increasing the minimum wage, overtime protections, and COVID protections.

Although the Rescue California and SEIU groups were advocating for different aspects of the recall, Talford talked about Newsom’s record on crime.

“There are things that can always be improved, there’s always things. And, you know, my heart goes out to any victim of crime. It does,” Talford said. “There are things that need to be done. But the governor has also championed reformative justice laws to ensure that laws are enforced adequately and equally across this country.”

Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email