Jonathan Cooper at AP:California finally deserves a great Governor, one who understands borders, crime and lowering taxes. John Cox is the man - he’ll be the best Governor you’ve ever had. I fully endorse John Cox for Governor and look forward to working with him to Make California Great Again!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2018
Cox is backed by much of California's GOP establishment, including U.S. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield, who is close with Trump.
"I am honored and deeply grateful to my President and I am looking forward to working with him to make California great again," Cox said in a statement. "Like the President, I'm businessman who knows how to get things done."
Trump's decision is a blow to Allen, a Huntington Beach Republican who has been aggressively courting Trump supporters and often points out that he's the only candidate for governor who voted for the president. Cox voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson — a decision he now says he regrets.
Following the announcement, he declared on Twitter that Californians deserve a governor who actually voted for Trump.
If conservative voters split between Cox and Allen two Democrats could advance to November — an outcome Republicans fear would hurt them in down-ballot races for Congress and the Legislature, potentially compromising GOP control of the House.Lisa Hagen at The Hill:
California and national Democrats have brokered an agreement between two House candidates to cease negative campaigning ahead of the June 5 primary in a key race that had gotten increasingly nasty.
California Democratic Party Chairman Eric Bauman announced that he had helped to engineer a deal between health insurance executive Andy Thorburn and veteran and lottery winner Gil Cisneros.
Bauman said Cisneros and Thorburn agreed to stop attacking each other and instead will focus on “promoting their positive visions” and “highlighting their contrast with the corrupt, incompetent Trump Republicans.”
Both candidates are running in a crowded Democratic primary in the race to replace retiring GOP Rep. Ed Royce. The race is seen as leaning Democrat given Royce’s retirement.
Democrats are growing fearful that they'll get boxed out of the general election, however, thanks to California's unique election laws.
The state’s “jungle primary” puts all candidates, regardless of party, in a single primary, with the top two vote-getters moving on to the general election. Democrats worry that the crowded primary fields could split up the party's vote and lead to two Republicans moving on to the November election.