Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg thinks the rest of the country could learn a thing or two from the policies in California.

The former New York City mayor opened his first campaign office in California in Los Angeles on Monday, telling supporters that he admired the state for being a leader on issues like gun control and protecting illegal immigrants.

“I think that California can serve as a great example for the rest of this country,” Mr. Bloomberg said, City News Service reported. “You have led the way on climate change, on fighting gun violence and on criminal justice.

“And you have, as importantly, welcomed immigrants with open arms,” he said. “Because unlike our president, you understand immigration doesn’t threaten America, immigration strengthens America.”

Conservatives, including President Trump, have pointed to California’s homelessness and drug crises as examples of the setbacks of unrestrained liberalism. Mr. Bloomberg, however, claimed Monday that the Golden State “is something the rest of the country looks up to” and has “been a leader in an awful lot of things,” the Associated Press reported.

Samantha Zager, a regional communications director for Trump Victory, the joint effort between the Republican National Committee and Mr. Trump’s re-election campaign, responded to Mr. Bloomberg’s comments in an statement to City News Service on Sunday, saying the former mayor was a “complete embarrassment as mayor and he has brought those same socialist policies with him on the presidential campaign trail.”

“From his radical stance on the Second Amendment to his attempts to regulate every detail of Americans’ lives, Californians have already seen what a Bloomberg presidency would mean for them,” Ms. Zager said.

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