Opinion: California 2010 governor prospects Newsom, Brown, Whitman, others take to Twitter


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Across the board, Twitter is looking like the fast track for organizing constituents and attracting some fundraising for California governor hopefuls. But there’s a pretty significant divide among the top candidates. Just look at these numbers.

San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom (see photo), a competitor for the Democrats’ 2010 nomination, has more than 1 million followers.


California Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown, the other guy on the left, has about 829,000 followers.

But the elephants aren’t looking so good.

Meg Whitman has 3,300 followers. Steve Poizner, Calif. insurance commissioner and a potential Republican nominee, has 2,100.

And taking home the bronze medal is fellow Republican Tom Campbell with 1,400.

C’mon, Tom, 1,400?

Unfortunately for the GOP, Twitter -- the social network that became so integral for Barack Obama to reach a connected demographic during his presidential campaign -- is becoming a major platform in the California gubernatorial race.

Newsom seems to be devoting the better half of this week to his virtual campaigning. He’s hosting a “Twitter Talk” on Tuesday at 12:45 p.m. Pacific to discuss his ideas for California.

The next day, Newsom will make a short speech in the afternoon at 140: The Twitter Conference, a series of panels discussing the social network. The Ticket will be there. Then at 6 p.m. Pacific, Newsom will ....

... hold an online townhall, which will be broadcast live on the Ustream website. Users will be able to send in questions via Twitter.

Although Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger can’t run again, he’s leading some impressive Twitter campaigns of his own. He’s an avid user of the service, and, perhaps unsurprising for a former movie star, he’s pioneered some unique, Twitter-connected video-streaming sites.

Schwarzenegger did so last month when he broadcast live from the Twitter Inc. headquarters in San Francisco. “With Twitter, you get an immediate response,” the governor said, praising the service. “What was important to people three months ago is not what’s important to them now.”


Schwarzenegger said he’s learning a lot from Twitter.

And what’s Twitter learning from the governor? “Now I realize we have to get a weight room,” quipped co-founder Biz Stone.

-- Mark Milian

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