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Push to recall Gov. Newsom receives $500K donation from firm

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Gavin Newsom California Governor

The movement to recall California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has just received its first six-figure donation, Politico reported Tuesday.

The consulting firm Prov 3:9, LLC—based in Irvine—donated $500,000 to one of the committees aiming to give California voters a recall election on their governor.

Additionally, the campaign also obtained about $100,000 from Sequoia Capital partner Douglas Leone and his wife Patricia Perkins-Leone, according to the Politico report. During the 2020 election cycle, the couple gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to President Donald Trump and allied Republican organizations.

As for why all this matters, Politico‘s Jeremy B. White writes that “[s]tatewide campaigns require lots of money, usually in the millions of dollars, and political observers have been closely watching to see if major donors step up for the recall effort.”

“Now the first major sum has landed, bolstering the recall’s chances,” he added, though he called the effort a “longshot.”

In recent months, the recall effort itself has picked up traction, amid Newsom receiving criticism for his handling of the pandemic in the nation’s highest-population state. Notable supporters of the recall effort include the California Republican Party and former Republican gubernatorial candidate John Cox, while conservative media figures such as former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee have given the effort their blessing.

In particular, Newsom faced fierce criticism for going against his own COVID-19 guidelines back in the autumn in order to attend a dinner party at a swanky Napa County restaurant called French Laundry, violating the limits at the time on the size of gatherings. This incident, White writes, “crystallized frustration” in the Golden State “with stringent restrictions”.

RELATED: Gov. Newsom apologizes for attending guideline-breaking party, says it was a ‘bad mistake’

Like Newsom, other high-profile Democrats across the country have been accused of violating COVID-19 guidelines such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock among others.

RELATED: McEnany slams Gov. Cuomo on religious gatherings, other high-profile Dems for violating COVID-19 guidelines

Last month, a judge gave proponents of the recall effort three additional months to gather the approximately 1.5 million signatures they would need to certify a recall. According to the proponents, they have collected about 800,000 signatures so far. However, “getting enough valid signatures,” White notes, “would likely mean collecting close to 2 million given that a share of them are typically deemed invalid.”

Back in 2003, there was a successful recall of former California Gov. Gray Davis (D). Why the 2003 recall succeeded, according to White, is in part due to former Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) donating money to the effort. On the other hand, the Newsom recall effort has only seen a series of smaller five-figure donations.

While $500,000 is certainly something to write home about, it’s “still not enough to collect all of the remaining signatures needed,” White concludes. Nonetheless, this surge in donations could indicate to potential donors that the recall effort is serious, thus opening the door for more money.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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REPORT: China has vast network of covert police stations around the world

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ChineseFemaleMiitary 652840318

China has a vast network of covert police stations abroad, according to a recent report by Safeguard Defenders, an NGO that focuses on human rights violations in China and other Asian countries. These police stations serve consular functions, but are also used by China to crack down on what the CCP deems “illegal” activity of Chinese nationals abroad. The police stations include at least 38 run by the Fuzhou City police, and 22 run by the Qingtian City police. Cities housing these police stations include New York, Toronto (which has three stations), London (two), Paris (three), Buenos Aires, Rio De Janeiro, and Tokyo.

Key findings of the report are below.

“Persuaded to return”

According to China, China has “persuaded to return [to China]” 230,000 Chinese nationals living aboard from April 2021 to July 2022 alone to face charges of fraud and telecommunications fraud. A Yangxia police station set up in Mozambique, for example, persuaded a Chinese national to return to China after being accused of stealing money from his employer. Chinese authorities also put pressure on the accused family to convince the accused to surrender.

Roughly 54,000 Chinese nationals were persuaded to return from northern Myanmar alone, in the first nine months of 2021. In July 2022, the government of Wenchang City warned that its citizens living in northern Myanmar must check in with their local police stations or face multiple penalties including blocking their children from attending urban schools back in China. Similarly, in February 2022, the government of Liayang City stated that Chinese “illegally staying” in northern Myanmar must return or the bank accounts of their immediate family members could be frozen.

The Nine Forbidden Countries

China has claimed that nine countries contain serious levels of fraud and telecom fraud perpetrated by Chinese nationals. Since November 2021, China has declared that Chinese citizens living in these nine countries must return to China immediately unless they have an “emergency reason” or a “strict necessity” to travel or stay in those countries. Those countries are: Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, the UAE, and Turkey. However, the report questions whether these countries are truly awash in such fraud, as most of China’s oversees police stations are in the West, and only one of the nine countries (Cambodia) has such a police station. Chinese staying in the nine forbidden countries, as well as threats to family members as stated above, creates a “guilt-by-association” atmosphere intended to repatriate the Chinese nationals.

Conclusion

According to the report, Chinese police stations abroad serve to bypass “bilateral extradition treaties or other mechanisms of judicial cooperation” to cooperate with CCP-linked NGOs which effectively “[sets] up an alternative policing and judicial system within third countries.” Instead of using international judicial cooperation, which establishes due process, the presumption of innocence, and the right to a fair trial, China uses the above “persuade-to-return” methods and transnational police stations to circumvent international law and coerce Chinese nationals to return to China for trials. These policies show the power of China’s long-arm oppression over its own subjects.

You can follow Steve Postal on Twitter @HebraicMosaic

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