By Clint Olivier
FRESNO - Wednesday evening scores of Democrats packed Pardini's in Northwest Fresno for the party's Jefferson and Jackson Dinner.
The featured speaker, San Francisco Mayor and candidate for Governor Gavin Newsom.
"We're losing our competitive edge, the success of this state has always been our talent. The ability to get people from around the world to come here for riches and new beginnings," he said.
Newsom says the biggest challenge facing the state is the loss of people.
People that move out of California in search of a better future.
He says it should be the other way around.
Newsom says the state needs to lure more employers to the state to bring back the California dream.
But Kuyler Crocker of the Fresno County Republican Party has a different view of the state with Newsom as governor.
Crocker says whoever ends up being the GOP's nominee will prove to be a worthy challenger to Newsom or whoever the Democrats run.
So far former Ebay C.E.O. Meg Whitman, Insurance Commisioner Steve Poizner and former congressman Tom Campbell are in the race.
"We're going to be very active in this county and in the valley and we're looking to gain seats at all levels of government including the governorship," he said.
So far Newsom is the only Democrat in the race, officially.
Former governor Jerry Brown is currently serving as Attorney General.
Brown is expected to enter the race against Newsom.