Although he was re-elected to a fourth term as governor of California on Tuesday in an electoral landslide, age and ideology make it unlikely that Jerry Brown will run for president in 2016, according to The Wall Street Journal
Although Brown is in good health, he would be 78 years old on Election Day in November 2016, and he seems less ambitious about seeking national office than he did when he campaigned for president in 1976 and 1980.
Brown has said he plans to use millions of dollars left over from his 2014 gubernatorial campaign to fund future state ballot initiatives, and he cannot transfer this money into a presidential campaign fund.
The time and expense required to pass California ballot initiatives and run for president make the prospect of doing both exceedingly difficult.
But the bigger obstacle to another White House run is that Brown’s efforts to position himself as a centrist Democrat may be an obstacle to winning over party activists who believe that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the presumptive front-runner, is not liberal enough.
During his current term as governor, Brown has clashed with Democrats in the California Legislature over his efforts to make spending cuts, his unwillingness to ban gas fracking, and his support for revamping costly environmental regulations — all positions that could create friction with progressive groups that are powerful forces inside the national Democratic Party.
In September, Brown signed into law legislation that could make the state’s regulatory environment more friendly but could antagonize another powerful party constituency: trial lawyers
. The measure would authorize trial courts to award legal expenses to one party in a case if the opposite party behaves in a frivolous way or seeks to cause unnecessary delay.
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