The Democratic frontrunner for governor of California, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, recently opened up about an affair he had a decade ago while mayor of San Francisco, saying he “learned an enormous amount” from the shameful experience.
“I acknowledged it. I apologized for it. I learned an enormous amount from it,” Newsom reportedly said while speaking at a forum sponsored by Politico and the University of San Francisco’s McCarthy Center for Public Service. “And I am, every day, trying to be a champion and a model” for youth and societies “to get to the roots causes,” he reportedly said.
According to Politico, Newsom also said he “applaud[ed] women for coming forward” as part of the #MeToo movement. He said the movement presents “a profound opportunity to address deeper issues,” and noted his belief that “it’s not a political movement, it’s a cultural movement.”
In February 2007, headlines emerged about Newsom’s brief affair with Ruby Rippey-Tourk, who worked with him and who was also the wife of his chief campaign adviser, Alex Tourk. At the time, Newsom was reportedly separated from his first wife (and current Fox News), host Kimberly Guilfoyle.
Newsom’s second wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom (whom he married in July 2008) has been very vocal about feminism and issues of sexual harassment.
In October, Mrs. Newsom published an op-ed about the #MeToo movement at HuffPost, titled “Harvey Weinstein And The End Of Open Secrets.”
She wrote: “Based on my years in the industry and unfortunately, my own personal experience with Harvey Weinstein, I can tell you that I believe every single word that was written in the extremely disturbing, but not all that shocking … not all that shocking because very similar things happened to me.”
Asked if the public could expect headlines about any other sexual transgressions since that event that could emerge and disqualify him, Newsom reportedly said firmly, “Absolutely not.”
Newsroom’s chief rival, former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, also had an extramarital affair during his term in office.