Richard Grenell Suggests He'll Run for California Governor, Attacks Gavin Newsom

Former Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell, who was a member of former President Donald Trump's Cabinet in 2020, seemingly hinted at a run for governor of California in 2022, after criticizing current Governor Gavin Newsom

At the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Saturday, Grenell concluded his speech by saying that Newsom should be recalled.

"Of course, if a public official is still failing to deliver on their promises, and if you can't limit their term or recall them in time, there's always one other option: you can run against them yourself," he said to applause, before walking offstage.

After calling for term limits in the House and Senate, Grenell shifted his speech to an attack on Newsom.

"If things get really bad with elected officials, there's always the option to recall them. If you want the best case possible for a recall campaign, take a look at my home state of California," he said.

Grenell then spoke about how the perception of California has shifted from "Reagan Country" and "the shining example of business innovation and middle-class success."

"Now when you think of California, you think of out-of-control wildfires, of rolling blackouts, of schools still closed, of shuttered businesses, of bans on fracking and wealthy people jumping the vaccine line," he said.

Grenell also referenced Newsom's $1 billion deal with the Chinese company BYD to manufacture masks for California "when American companies with the same equipment were based in California," as the former acting national intelligence director put it. He mentioned again that he felt that there wasn't a better example of someone to be recalled than Newsom.

Despite appearing to hint at a gubernatorial run in his speech, Grenell said he was "looking at the private sector" in an interview with Real America's Voice, while also dedicated to the efforts to recall Newsom.

When asked who would campaign, Grenell dodged the question and spoke about making sure they have enough verified signatures and expressed skepticism about the verification process.

WATCH: @RichardGrenell discusses his plans for the future with @realdrgina pic.twitter.com/AeK8jYOKtN

— Real America's Voice (RAV) (@RealAmVoice) February 27, 2021

In an interview with conservative media outlet Newsmax after his speech, Grenell was asked to sum up what his message was.

"The value of the outside viewpoint is really key, and I think what we have right now is a political system that all of the insiders are controlling the information, controlling what we hear, what we see, and I think we've gotta somehow break that system. We need better representation," he said.

As the next CPAC panel began, former White House Director of Strategic Communications Mercedes Schlapp, who's married to American Conservative Union chair Matt Schlapp, also tipped her hat to Grenell before beginning to moderate the panel.

"How wonderful was Ric Grenell? I don't know, I think he'd make a great governor of California," she told the audience.

Grenell wasn't the only Californian at CPAC to support a recall for the governor. Congressman Devin Nunes showed support for the move during a panel and spoke about the importance of supporting Republican candidates in the case of a recall.

Rep @DevinNunes discusses the recall effort in California. #CPAC2021 #AmericaUnCanceled pic.twitter.com/TZAMIiInpn

— CPAC 2021 (@CPAC) February 27, 2021

"What we're gonna have to do as conservatives, we're gonna have to rally behind one candidate—there's a lot of good candidates that are talking about it right now. At the end of the day, when it comes time to push this, we're gonna have to really rally behind one. Those candidates will have to work it out. They need to get out and campaign and rally behind one," he said in a clip shared by CPAC.

Newsweek reached out to Grenell for comment, but did not receive a response in time for publication.

CPAC Richard Grenell California Gov
Amb. Richard Grenell, former Acting Director of U.S. National Intelligence, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference held in the Hyatt Regency on February 27, 2021 in Orlando, Florida. Joe Raedle/Getty