The Re-Branding of CA Gov Candidate John Cox: Comedy Gold or Game-Changer?

John Cox for Governor

One of the Recall Gavin Newsom campaign’s first contenders, businessman John Cox, has literally gone off the deep end in his commitment to be a frontrunner candidate. The milquetoast candidate, who lost to Gavin Newsom by 24 points in 2018, has decided to start a new strategery with this 2021 campaign, and it involves a complete rebrand.


Cox changed the “Real John H. Cox” on his Twitter page to “Beast John Cox,” and has a California Brown Bear prominently displayed on his header photo.

I. Kid. You. Not.

The re-branding of John Cox into “Beast Mode”

Cox’s website has also been rebranded with the “Beast” and Brown Bear insignia, with the headline:

“California Has Tried Pretty Politicians. It’s Time For A Beastly Change.”


According to Fox 40 in Sacramento, Cox is launching his “Meet the Beast Bus Tour” campaign this morning in the State Capitol, with a live, 1,000 pound Brown Bear in tow. Cox then plans to go down to beautiful Yountville, home of the infamous French Laundry. We can only assume he doesn’t plan to dine in—I don’t think the bear would fit through the door.

But the icing on the cake is the first ad footprint of the Recall Gavin Newsom campaign, and it’s a doozy.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle,

The recall campaign against Gov. Gavin Newsom is about to take its first surreal advertising turn and not surprisingly, Fred Davis — who once created a U.S. Senate ad in California starring a demonic sheep — is involved.

Davis, one of the most provocative GOP political ad makers of the past two decades, is the guy to call when you want to get voters talking about an ad — and hopefully your campaign. Not everything people say will be positive, but at least they will be talking.

Fred Davis, meet John Cox.

Davis’ latest creation involves rebranding Cox, one of the leading Republicans challenging Newsom. The $5 million statewide campaign launching Tuesday features a talking parrot mocking Newsom as a “pretty boy” and a growling 7-foot, 1,000-pound bear licking his new client, Cox, dubbed here as “a ball-busting beast.”

“You want something that people go home and talk about,” Davis told me, “not just one more political ad.”

This is not just another ad. You will talk about it. And so will late night comedians, who just received the gift of fresh content for weeks.


Joe Garofoli the SF Chronicle Senior Political Writer who interviewed Cox is not wrong. This ad, and Cox’s campaign, will either be the running joke of the 2021 Recall Gavin Newsom campaign, or it will be the game-changer. For now, it’s gotten the attention off Caitlyn Jenner and transgender athletes.

We know Jenner’s story ad nauseam. Cox at least recognized that people needed to hear his story (which is quite compelling), and get a fresh look at him. You can give his story a listen here.

With Cox dropping an initial $5 million on “fresh” ads, and the cool bear, you would think Cox’s people would have grabbed the web domain for “Beast John Cox,” as well as kept his former Twitter handle.

Oops. Their bad.


This is indicative of the grifter class of Republican strategists. Cox needs to go into beast mode and fire them.


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