Kevin Faulconer running for California governor

Faulconer is the former mayor of San Diego, a SDSU graduate and former Associated Students president.


Brenden Tuccinardi

Then-San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer speaks at the Aug. 17 ground breaking ceremony for Aztec Stadium.

by Brenden Tuccinardi, Editor in Chief

After forming an exploratory committee on Jan. 4, former San Diego Mayor, San Diego State alumnus and former Associated Students President Kevin Faulconer announced his run for California governor Monday evening. 

The two-term Republican mayor is challenging incumbent Gov. Gavin Newsom, whose handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has come under fire in recent months as the state’s COVID-19 numbers soared and vaccine distribution faltered. Not to mention a damning dinner party at The French Laundry restaurant, days after announcing much of the state would be placed under stay-at-home orders. 

Newsom also faces a growing recall movement that is on track to go before voters after garnering more than 1.3 of the 1.5 million signatures required to qualify for the ballot. 

Faulconer graduated from SDSU in 1990 with a bachelor’s in political science and served as A.S. President from 1989 to 1990. He was elected to the San Diego City Council in 2002 and became mayor after winning a runoff election to replace Bob Filner, who resigned amidst sexual harassment allegations. 

In a video announcing his candidacy, Faulconer drew parallels between Newsom and Filner. Saying he’s “taken on promise breakers” before. 

“In San Diego, we had waste, corruption, an incompetent, bullying mayor, but voters had the courage to overthrow the status quo,” Faulconer said in the video, an overt reference to the Newsom recall campaign. 

“I’m running to make a difference,” he said. “Not make promises.”

If elected, Faulconer would be the first SDSU alumni to be governor and the first California State University graduate elected to the state’s highest office.