SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom will deliver his third State of the State address from Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, the home field of the World Series champions that has been transformed into one of the nation’s largest COVID-19 vaccination sites.
“Dodger Stadium represents California’s spirit of service. Once filled with dedicated fans, it is now filled with dedicated health care providers,” Newsom spokesperson Sahar Robertson said in a statement Monday.
The stadium also provides a more somber reminder of the pandemic: It seats 56,000 people, nearly the number of people who have died from COVID-19 in California.
Newsom’s address Tuesday comes at a crucial time for the Democratic governor, who faces a likely recall election later this year fueled by anger over his handling of the pandemic.
Newsom has been crisscrossing the state in recent weeks, highlighting his administration’s efforts to administer vaccinations while trumpeting the declining numbers of new coronavirus cases in the nation’s most populous state.
Speaking Monday at a vaccination site in the small Central Valley community of Earlimart, Newsom said not to expect lots of policy announcements during his speech, scheduled for 6 p.m.
“I want to highlight this heroic work that’s being done every single day with people that aren’t getting attention or being celebrated but are the quiet heroes in this pandemic,” Newsom said. “It’s a different kind of State of the State.”