The Los Angeles Times, not known for being a balanced or moderate newspaper, is breaking the mold with its endorsement of a Republican candidate for a statewide office and making the case that California Democrats need someone to check their power within the Golden State.

The endorsement of Republican Lanhee Chen for Controller of California — an admittedly “wonky” office — from The Times Editorial Board is based on its sentiment that “the controller should be as independent from the party in power as possible.” The endorsement for controller — “the person who cuts the checks that keep government running and also holds the power to audit agencies that spend state funds” — also notes Chen “is a sharp thinker with experience analyzing large financial systems,” experience that would certainly be useful to look at waste, fraud, and abuse happening in California. 

Even though the Editorial Board notes that it supports California Democrats’ woke agenda, it notes “California’s governance is falling short of its ideals” despite “several years of strong revenue that have pumped billions more into education, healthcare and alleviating homelessness” while “too few students can read at grade level, too many Medi-Cal patients can’t see a doctor and too many people sleep on the streets.” 

Clearly, Democrats’ handling of those policy areas has not gone well, despite all the funding thrown at issues, which would lead most to question whether the Democrat policies were really the right ones — but alas The Times misses the chance to point that out. 

Still, The LA Times’ recognition that a Republican ought to be elected to a statewide office to act as a check on Democrats’s power puts a crack in the left’s claims that California’s one-party “utopia” is an effective example of good Democrat governance. 

“California needs a fiscal watchdog who will examine why state spending has not yielded better results, and point the way toward necessary improvements,” The Times’ explains. “The most prominent Democrats in this race seem unlikely to exhibit the independence that this moment demands of the next controller.” As the endorsement piece does its due diligence to compliment California Democrats, it again reinforces that “California will benefit more from a controller who will stand up to them.”

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