L.A. Times endorses Republican in state’s controller election

The liberal L.A. Times has endorsed a Republican for the state’s controller battle in an unexpected move.

Republican Lanhee Chen received the support of the Times in an editorial on Thursday.

The view

“Among this strong field, we believe Chen is the best choice for this position. Why? Because he is a sharp thinker with experience analyzing large financial systems, and because the controller should be as independent from the party in power as possible,” the editorial said.

“Democrats control state government and we support their priorities to combat climate change, preserve abortion rights and advance economic and racial justice. But California’s governance is falling short of its ideals,” it added.

The battle

Politico, another liberal outlet, shared a more balanced view of Chen’s run.

“The former Hoover Institution fellow and young fiscal wonk has piled up GOP endorsements and collected some $2 million since launching as he preaches a message of financial discipline, arguing Democrats have mismanaged the state’s enormous spending,” it wrote.

In his announcement to run as the state’s controller, Chen noted he will “expose fraud & waste in government, & ensure we can account for every penny our state spends.”

The move could be big for conservatives who see the opportunity as a new chance for influence in the largely Democrat state.

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