Major Williams, California’s Republican gubernatorial candidate, believes California’s ability to tackle rising crime will have a profound effect on the rest of the country.

“(California) is the incubator and then it’s moving to other places as well,” Williams told Granthshala News in an interview on Wednesday. “So, we have to nip this in the bud right here.”

Williams, a Republican competing to replace Governor Gavin Newsom in a recall election, said he also supports the recall campaign against Los Angeles Country District Attorney George Gascon.

Gascon, the former assistant police chief of the Los Angeles Police Department and former attorney for San Francisco, has been accused by crime victims of creating a revolving door for criminals where they are not held fully accountable for their crimes.

Incoming Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon is sworn in as his wife, Fabiola Kramsky, holds a copy of the Constitution during a mostly-virtual ceremony in downtown Los Angeles, Monday, December 7, 2020.

Williams said the ability of criminals to commit petty crimes knowing they won’t face serious punishment is “a red flag if you want to see an increase in crime in a particular location.”

“As a candidate (for governor), I am the one who is actively supporting the recall of the DA, when he has some leniency… offence,” Williams said. “It also sends a message to the entire state, because California is a trailblazer and trendsetter when it comes to policy, the things we do.”

California Gov. NEWSOM gets salary boost between recalls. The challengers say they should reject it.

Williams said she believes the state should balance a tougher approach on crime, while ensuring that it does not disproportionately affect minority communities.

“[T]There have been unjust sentences here too, which is why I care so much about reform when those people walk out, so they have the opportunity to advance in our society,” Williams said.

Williams, an entrepreneur and founder of Major Kicks for Kids, was the first Republican to announce his candidacy for governor. Businessman John Cox, who was defeated by Newsom in 2018, former San Diego mayor Kevin Faulkner, and 1976 Olympic decathlon champion and TV personality Caitlyn Jenner have since entered the fray.

Newsom faced a recall election later this year. Organizers, upset over the governor’s handling of the pandemic, gathered and validated enough signatures to qualify for a ballot in April.

Granthshala News’ Louis Cassiano contributed to this report.