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I have long assumed I would support Gavin Newsom for governor as soon as his “turn” came after Gov. Brown is termed out this year. I like his progressive ideas and his entrepreneurial approach. But I have found a better candidate.

Recently I met with Delaine Eastin and many others supporting her. This was my second opportunity to hear her speak in person. She is dynamic, practical, fierce, and she has a wonderful ability to tell stories and connect with both individuals and crowds. And I like her politics.

“Budgets are statements of values” is one of her favorite declarations. She is a champion of pre-school to graduate-level education, the environment (clean air and water, no to allowing transportation of oil drilled off our coast, strong waste management regulations) a strong, educated and vibrant economy (California is the sixth largest “country” in the world), universal healthcare, and sophisticated technology to run our state. She speaks in detail on these subjects, not in generalities.

If you also value governmental experience, she is your woman. She started out as a Union City councilwoman, became a member of the California Assembly, and went on to become the state Superintendent of Public Instruction for two terms. She’s a native Californian and, despite her valuable government experience, has not been in a political position since 2003. This run for governor is not the next rung in her political ladder. She genuinely wants to be governor, specifically, and not as a stepping stone to even higher office.

In this #metoo year, it is worth adding that she has always been a solid advocate for women and civil rights. Delaine has called for an independent investigation into claims of sexual assault in the state legislature and for recommendations for much-needed institutional change.

Please, don’t miss this opportunity to support an outstanding and highly qualified woman candidate, especially if you have simply gotten used to the idea of supporting someone else, like I did. Delaine Eastin has changed the equation.

Susan Wilkinson