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Opinion California recall election is disaster for democratic values, threatens nation

17:15  09 september  2021
17:15  09 september  2021 Source:   usatoday.com

Top 10 Candidates in California Recall Less Than 2 Weeks Before Election

  Top 10 Candidates in California Recall Less Than 2 Weeks Before Election Nearly four dozen candidates are running to replace Governor Gavin Newsom in California's September 14 recall election. © Scott Strazzante-Pool/Getty Images Though 46 candidates appear on the California gubernatorial election ballot, few are polling in the double-digits less than two weeks out from the September 14 special election. Above (L-R): Democrat Kevin Paffrath and Republicans John Cox, Kevin Kiley and Kevin Faulconer debate in the California gubernatorial recall election hosted by KCRA 3 and the San Francisco Chronicle on August 25, 2021 in San Francisco, California.

California’s recall process has always been deeply flawed. The very idea that a sitting governor could receive 49% of the vote and still be replaced by a candidate receiving a significantly smaller percentage of the vote is mind-boggling. But in an era of voter apathy and Trumpist scheming, our largest state could be on the brink of catastrophe, one with national implications.

Larry Elder wearing a suit and tie standing in front of a building: Conservative radio talk show host Larry Elder speaks to supporters during a campaign stop outside the Hall of Justice downtown Los Angeles Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021. © Damian Dovarganes/AP Conservative radio talk show host Larry Elder speaks to supporters during a campaign stop outside the Hall of Justice downtown Los Angeles Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021.

It is time to sound the alarm. Voters who rejected President Donald Trump by massive margins must now turn out to vote no on the recall to keep Team Trump from taking over.

California recall reality: Newsom could be replaced by candidate with far fewer votes

  California recall reality: Newsom could be replaced by candidate with far fewer votes Legal scholars say courts would uphold California's recall law, even if an incumbent were replaced by someone with fewer ballots.Although it's impossible to predict how courts will rule, many experts say the current recall process has long survived legal challenges, and probably would again, even if a fringe candidate won on Sept. 14 and became governor with a minority of overall votes.

How bad could it be? Imagine someone like Rush Limbaugh as governor of California.

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That’s right. Polls show that if voters do not reject the recall, right-wing talk-radio host Larry Elder is likely to become governor.

California’s recall process is, frankly, a disaster for democratic values. There is no reason required to recall a governor. All that's needed is enough signatures to get the challenge on the ballot. Voters have two choices – vote yes or no for a recall, then select a new governor. If 50% of voters support a recall, then the candidate on the ballot who receives the most votes will become California's next governor. The winner does not need an overall majority.

California's Newsom votes as recall against him nears end

  California's Newsom votes as recall against him nears end SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom voted to keep himself in office Friday, days before the recall election against him comes to a close. The Democratic governor cast his ballot at an early voting center in Sacramento alongside his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and took a glimpse of her vote. “I think we're gonna be alright," he joked. The last day to vote is Tuesday, and at least a third of California's 22 million registeredThe Democratic governor cast his ballot at an early voting center in Sacramento alongside his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and took a glimpse of her vote.

Elder is a smooth talker, but that can’t hide his extremist record.

Elder has spoken against the minimum wage and family medical leave. He has stated that women make too much of sexism. And he thinks bosses should be able to ask women whether they intend to have children and discriminate against them if they say yes.

Elder has promoted white supremacist ideology. He believes it is a lie that racism is a problem in the United States. He blames young Black people killed by police for not being more deferential to officers. Elder insults Latino immigrants. He wants to deny Dreamers, young immigrants in the country illegally who were brought here as children, a shot at the American dream.

COLUMN: Families of people killed by police violence: Reform is not the answer. Uproot the system.

He has also helped bring us some of the worst people in American politics. He mentored Stephen Miller, the notorious architect of the Trump administration’s ugliest anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies. Elder even told Miller, “I hope to live to see the day when you become president.” That is deeply disturbing.

What Makes Newsom's Recall Election Different From Davis' 2003 Ouster

  What Makes Newsom's Recall Election Different From Davis' 2003 Ouster A Democratic strategist who advised former California Governor Gray Davis said there are "several" differences between the two gubernatorial recall elections.Newsom and Davis, both Democrats, are the only California governors who have had to defend their seats through a recall election since the state adopted its recall process in 1911. While voters elected to remove Davis from office nearly 18 years ago, South said he believes the September 14 recall election "is going to be a blowout win for Newsom.

Worse still, Elder is making it clear that he won’t let legislators elected by California voters stand in his way. He is planning to run the state like a king. He says he will declare emergency powers to suspend California’s environmental protection laws and fire thousands of teachers.

Elder tries to deflect criticism of his extremism by calling it a distraction from issues he would rather talk about. But his extremism is exactly what has right-wing leaders so fired up about putting him in office. Elder says he was talked into running by propaganda pusher Dennis Prager. He’s being promoted by fellow radio host Eric Metaxas, who hosted a “Stop the Steal” rally at which the head of the Oath Keepers threatened bloody civil war if Trump didn’t stay in power after losing the election.

Jack Hibbs, a megachurch pastor who has denounced Nancy Pelosi's politics as “demonic,” turned a recent Sunday service into a campaign rally for Elder. While praying for Elder, Hibbs asked God to forgive Californians “for sending people with antichrist worldviews to office, like Nancy Pelosi and Kamala Harris.”

EXPLAINER: How California could recall Gov. Gavin Newsom

  EXPLAINER: How California could recall Gov. Gavin Newsom LOS ANGELES (AP) — The California recall election that could remove first-term Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom from office wraps up Tuesday. Nearly 8 million mail-in ballots — the form of voting most Californians use — already have been returned out of 22 million sent to registered voters. The contest unfolded this summer as the nation's most populous state saw a surge in coronavirus infections from the highly contagious delta variant and the return of masks and other restrictions in many places. There have been raging wildfires, crime rates have risen and a homeless crisis persists unabated.

And the implications go far beyond California. I hate to even think this, but Sen. Dianne Feinstein is 88 years old. If she were to leave office before the end of her term, Elder wouldn’t hesitate to replace her with a hard-right Republican. This would immediately put the Senate back into Republican hands and give Mitch McConnell the power to block everything we care about: climate change, voting rights, the pandemic response and, of course, President Joe Biden’s federal court nominations. It’s no exaggeration to say this would cause generational damage.

The state’s voters have repeatedly and strenuously rejected Trump and Trumpism. Someone like Elder would never come close to winning a normal statewide election. But the way the recall election works, he could end up as governor even if millions more Californians voted to keep the current governor than voted to elect Elder.

The prospect of seizing power in California has right-wing activists fired up to vote.

Mainstream and progressive Californians must match that fire. This is not a drill. Everything is at stake, in California and potentially the rest of the nation. Many of us know somebody who lives and votes in California. Talk to your friends and loved ones in the Golden State. Let them know they can’t sit this one out. Urge them to vote no in this recall calamity.

California recall election: Will the state keep or remove Gov. Gavin Newsom? Results could take time.

  California recall election: Will the state keep or remove Gov. Gavin Newsom? Results could take time. Tuesday is decision day in California and voters in the Golden State will decide whether they will keep Gov. Gavin Newsom or remove him from office.It's been a winding path to get here, but polls show the Democrat is likely to keep his job leading a state that is known nationally as a liberal trendsetter.

Ben Jealous serves as president of People For the American Way. He is the former president and CEO of the NAACP and a graduate of Columbia University and Oxford, where he was a Rhodes scholar.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: California recall election is disaster for democratic values, threatens nation

Democrats push for changes to California recall efforts .
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom handily defeated a recall election that could have removed him from office, but his Democratic allies in the Legislature already are seeking changes that could make it harder to mount such a challenge in the future. © Provided by Associated Press Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks to the press after visiting with students at Melrose Leadership Academy, a TK-8 school in Oakland, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021, one day after defeating a Republican-led recall effort.

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This is interesting!