Trump, California governor feud on Twitter over bullet train

"Fake news," Gov. Gavin Newsom tweeted to Trump, who claimed the project had been canceled.
President Donald Trump and California Gov. Gavin Newsom traded barbs over Twitter on Wednesday over the state's scaled-back bullet train project.Saul Loeb / AFP - Getty Images file
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By Dennis Romero

President Trump and California Gov. Gavin Newsom traded tweets Wednesday over federal funding for the state's scaled-back bullet train project.

"California has been forced to cancel the massive bullet train project after having spent and wasted many billions of dollars," Trump said. "They owe the Federal Government three and a half billion dollars. We want that money back now."

California Gov. Gavin Newsom discusses the results of an investigation that found Pacific Gas & Electric was not responsible for the Tubbs Fire, in Sacramento, Calif on Jan. 24, 2019.Rich Pedroncelli / AP file

The project was not canceled.

At his first State of the State address since taking office Jan. 7, Newsom said Tuesday that the under-construction transportation project, which has seen projected costs more than double, would be limited for now to a route from Merced to Bakersfield in the Central Valley.

"The project, as currently planned, would cost too much and take too long," the governor said Tuesday. "There’s been too little oversight and not enough transparency. Right now, there simply isn’t a path to get from Sacramento to San Diego, let alone from San Francisco to L.A. I wish there were."

Responding to Trump, Newsom accused the president of "desperately searching" for cash to fund his proposed wall along the Southwest border.

"Fake news," Newsom tweeted. "We’re building high-speed rail, connecting the Central Valley and beyond. This is CA’s money, allocated by Congress for this project. We’re not giving it back."

Dennis Romero

Dennis Romero writes for NBC News and is based in Los Angeles.